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Simply put, killer performance and greater team retention just may lie in taking the time to develop the talents of your staff members.
Be sure to visit the Practice Management to learn about more ways of growing your advisory practice.
A study by Investment News showed that a third of advisory firms have no training program in place at all for their staff members.
The same study indicated that almost half of advisory firms relied solely on ad hoc mentoring by senior-level advisors.
While mentoring by senior financial advisors is definitely valuable to team members, there should be a formal development process in place and it shouldn’t simply be ad hoc.
A strong culture truly values the contributions and talents of its staff members. The more valued your team members feel, the harder they actually work and the longer they stay with you.
Furthermore, your staff should know where to turn to if they need help, ongoing training or additional development. Most importantly, they should not be embarrassed to ask. Matter of fact, it should be routinely encouraged.
It is a wise idea to urge your staff to regularly identify and make a list of areas that they need further assistance in or training to do their jobs at peak level.
If you truly want to keep team members that are motivated and who outperform, consider holding a brief meeting every other month or even quarterly to specifically discuss the developmental needs that they have identified. Put together a plan to help your staff members tackle the areas they need additional help with.
It should not be assumed the additional training will be offered by you or your other team members, even if you are able to. There are numerous options for outsourcing ongoing developmental needs. Whether it is a certification, online training, webinar, or conference they can attend, your staff should be empowered and encouraged to obtain the additional skills they desire to do their jobs well.
They will not only attain new skill sets by participating in outside training, but they will also likely come back to the office with new ideas and best practices to keep your practice current. After all, the flow of new ideas and new ways of doing things is paramount to a successful business.
You must also take into consideration your senior team members. Even seasoned advisors, who are no longer newbies, can benefit from ongoing mentoring and coaching. Well-established financial advisors and senior staff members desire to improve and grow in their careers as well. Mentoring and coaching shouldn’t end because the team member is no longer green.
While in-house coaching and mentoring is usually an option for younger advisors, outsourcing is also a possibility and is likely the best option for veteran team members.
There are numerous personal and professional coaches both inside and outside of the financial services industry that can be hired to help with coaching. In addition, many of the industry associations offer strong mentoring programs.
The National Association of Professional Financial Advisors offers a program called Mentor Engage. It matches both mentors and mentees in specific areas they wish to be mentored. The Financial Planning Association offers a similar program called MentorMatch that also helps mentees and mentors advance their career goals.
The CFP Board not only has its own mentoring program, but it also has a mentoring program specifically for women called WIN-to-WIN in order to connect aspiring female CFP professionals with established CFP professionals for guidance as they pursue their careers and their CFP certification.
It is undeniable that the cost of hiring new staff is extremely expensive. If you don’t invest in developing your current staff, it will not only lead to higher turnover but also to underperforming team members and lost productivity to your practice.
It is paramount that your firm retains its clients, right? It should be equally as important to your business to retain your team members. The key is to invest in their ongoing development. The results will be invaluable.
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