The employment outlook has never been better for Financial Advisors. It is not as difficult as many think to launch a career as a Financial Advisor. Here’s an insiders view of the best ways to get started as an Independent Financial Advisor.
Free time, flexibility, and excellent potential income are waiting for those who choose to follow this career path.
As with many things, there is a hard way and an easy way to launch a career as an advisor. One is a more difficult trail with obstacles along the way. It begins with an MBA degree in personal finance or economics followed by intensive study for one or more NASD examinations to become a registered representative.
Once completed, you’ll need to start looking for an employer and competiton for these positions is keen. Despite significant competition and regulatory compliance oversight, you’ll build your “assets under management” in order to satisfy your employer and/or qualify for assistance with expensive advanced certifications.
There is, however, an alternate route that doesn’t involve such life changing career moves.
For the Boomer, a fifty-something with the life expectancy of a Galapagos sea turtle but with less than two years of income saved for retirement, it’s no longer about accumulating a portfolio of assets. It’s about the other three quadrants of his or her balance sheet which have gone largely ignored.
1. How to get the most sustainable lifetime income from the existing portfolio of assets.
2. How to eliminate hidden and/or and unnecessary expenses.
3. How to eliminate all debt before retirement.
A true financial advisor should address these areas of concern and, to do so doesn’t require a life changing career experience. There are new and innovative financial products and services which effectively address these issues, but are not securities and are not regulated by the NASD and SEC.
If you’re contemplating a lucrative and rewarding career as a Financial Advisor, Here are some tips to help you down that path.
1. Be independent. No one financial entity that has all of the right solutions to all of the financial problems out there. As an Independent Financial Advisor, you’ll have the freedom to choose the best financial products and services from a variety of carriers.
2. Be independent but don’t walk the path alone. You need a system. Join an Independent Marketing Organization. They will, in exchange for an override commission from the carriers, provide turn-key systems including advisor training, product access, provider contracts, and assistance with licensing, marketing, and regulatory compliance. Many have spent years developing effective and predictable systems to support their network of advisors.
3. Build a professional referral network. Your clients will seek advice on a range of financial subjects including real estate, taxes, insurance, legal contracts, mortgage and consumer finance. Team up with some qualified specialists in your vicinity. Refer your clients to them and they will refer their clients to you.
4. Don’t worry about your sales skills. Many successful advisors are numbers people and couldn’t sell snow cones in Death Valley. It’s all about positioning. The model of all successful business is the same. There is a problem. There is a solution. By positioning yourself between the two, you have value and people will recognize that value.
5. Don’t talk about yourself or your business. Focus on your prospect/client and ask the right questions. How do you feel about ….? What do you plan to do about ……? If there was a way to ……, would you …..? The art of asking questions is critical to your success in attracting new clients.
6. Keep in communication with your prospective clients. It often requires six or seven exposures to build a successful client relationship. Set up an email system to keep them informed of the latest developments in your industry.
7. Test the water, first. Some new advisors run into difficulty because they get excited and spend too much money before they start making money. Keep your start-up expenses under $500. The worst case scenario should be that you didn’t make a career out of it but got a very inexpensive financial education.
We are at the brink of the largest wealth transfer in history. There is a tremendous need for qualified financial advisors to lead this history making generation down the path to financial security. Those that choose this path will discover a career that offers an abundance of personal satisfaction as well as significant income potential.