Monday, December 28, 2009

New Year = Perfect Reinvention Time

Great article!
A "must read" as we enter the New Year:

Cover Story - Investment Advisor magazine: Reinvention Time
By Robert F. Keane

Scott Hanson and Pat McClain have built several successful advisory businesses. Now they’ve launched a new firm to serve low-net-worth clients. Pay attention.

You'll want to read the primary article (link above) as well as the 3 corresponding side bars. Why? I've worked with a lot of highly successful financial advisors over the past 23 years. Hanson and McClain are two of the smartest financial advisors I know. They treat their business like a business, outsource or hirer in expertise for anything they don't enjoy or do well, use time blocking and hold to personal time commitments, focus on first things first, are constantly in marketing mode - even when they don't need the business (which is, of course, the very best time to market) - and much more.

"A lot of financial advisors are just tradesmen," said Hanson in Keane's article. "They have a certain service that they provide and that’s what they do. As they get more successful they just work with bigger clients or more complicated clients to generate more revenue for the service that they provide. Most advisors don’t view themselves as a business. That’s why most advisory shops stay small, and I think it’s a mistake. Moving forward, it’s going to be even more of a challenge for these folks.

"We look at this as a business. We’re business people first and financial advisors second. Any decent businessperson would say, ‘How can I leverage the brand I have right now to bring in additional revenue?’"

Smart advisors everywhere will read Keane's article and take note. Hanson McClain are ones to watch in 2010 - and beyond.

Saturday, December 19, 2009 - Have Meaningful Dinner Conversations this Holiday Season, Win New Clients in 2010

Just in time for the holidays ...

LifeBio is offering a free Family and Friends Conversation Kit, available at through December 31, 2009. Company founder, Beth Sanders, guarantees the kit will make family dinner conversations richer and more meaningful. The holidays are one of the best opportunities families have to permanently capture family stories and make them last forever.

LifeBio's free Family and Friends Conversation Kit includes:
  1. Life story questions ideal for the holidays or anytime. These table tents can actually be printed and set right on the dinner table. Answer cards for recording memories are provided.
  2. LifeBio's 7 Tips for Interviewing
  3. Ideas for kids to draw or write the memories being discussed
  4. 5 good reasons to capture life stories NOW

Everyone has a story to tell, yet not everyone knows it, or knows quite how to tell it. That's where LifeBio comes in. Read more here: Free Download From Promises Meaningful Dinner Conversations this Holiday Season

Advisors: Learn how to use LifeBio Events to generate better conversations with current and future clients - Read my article, published by Research magazine, here:

LifeBio Events: A New Way for FAs to Bond with Clients
Tom McCarthy, affiliated with Commonwealth Financial, uses LifeBio system to build rapport with current clients and special guests – a great “next generation” strategy for smart advisors nationwide.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Missing Piece of the Portfolio Puzzle

Only recently have managed futures become accessible to individual investors. These assets – investments whose value varies with changes in market indexes, interest rates, currency exchange rates and commodity prices – have long been used by foundations and other institutional investors to diversify traditional portfolios of stocks and bonds.

Now investors who have total portfolios of $500,000 to $5 million can benefit from managed futures. These investments are often viewed as being a bit risky for individual investors, and it’s true that they’re not for the faint of heart.

Unlike many traditional investments, managed futures aren’t suited to long-term, buy-and-hold strategies; they must be closely monitored and managed. But when added to well-diversified portfolios of stocks and bonds and properly managed, they may help to protect individual investors against market declines.

Bob Lindner, CEO of Lindner Capital Advisors, provides more details in his article published by HCPlive in their Finance/Money section:

HCPlive | Finance/Money | The Missing Piece of the Portfolio Puzzle