I remember when I first started my career in this business. Wide-eyed and fresh out of college, I was excited to work in investments and financial planning. Money and finance interested me. Beginning my career felt invigorating. Working with people to enhance their real-world outcomes sounded rewarding. “Wealth management” had a nice ring to it.
I learned quickly what many people still don’t know. The majority of the financial planning and wealth management business is…
And given it is a sales business, most financial advisors spend far more time chasing new clients than they do working with their existing clients. Rather than being obsessed with tracking clients’ progress and outcomes, the emphasis is on tracking outreach to prospective new clients. Phone calls made, networking meetings attended, business cards handed out... The philosophy taught from day one is success in this business is a function of the number of prospective clients you talk to. I suppose it makes sense when you think about it. When there are products to sell, it’s more profitable to spend time with prospective buyers. Incentives are undefeated.
Just how you want your financial advisor spending his time, right?
We didn’t think so.
So we founded Resolute Wealth Management in 2021. Same business, completely different business model. Rather than defining success as a function of chasing more prospective clients, we believe success should be a function of doing great work for our existing clients. Our crazy idea: do excellent work for the people who trust us with their wealth and others will seek us out.
We suddenly found we have a lot more time on our hands. Zero time spent chasing prospective clients means more time to:
- Work with our investment team, led by our Chief Investment Officer, Rick Wedell, who monitors and manages our client’s portfolios daily.
- Stay ahead of the curve on legislative changes, particularly changes to the tax code, that will impact our clients. Ensure our clients act proactively rather than reactively when relevant bills become law.
- Plan and execute educational dinners for our clients – giving them an opportunity to hear our firm’s thoughts on the relevant topics of the day in a relaxed (read: open bar) environment.
- Study investor psychology and develop methods of communicating and managing investor behaviors, which ultimately have an outsized influence on our clients’ odds of long-term success.
- Create helpful content – blogs and videos – to push out to clients weekly to assist them in separating the signal from the noise of the 24-hour financial media and news cycle.
- Create and monitor in-depth plans for each client in addition to their portfolios (rather than spending 15 minutes to create a “plan” to check a box as is too frequently done in the industry).
- Spend more time with our clients and focus on building a relationship that will help us weather financial curve balls and down markets together.
- Ensure our clients have access to the best financial technology and provide feedback to ensure our tech stack continues to improve for the benefit of our clients.
- Spend time with other like-minded advisors to learn new ideas and methods they use to deliver value to their clients to ensure we’re constantly sharpening our own sword.
In short, we believe people prefer financial advisors who spend their time focused on their existing clients rather than on chasing new prospects. Personally, we have a lot on the line as well. Resolute Wealth Management’s first clients were Sean & Laura Cawley and Rory & Sarah Hartmann. Our portfolios are managed and plans monitored using the same philosophy and processes as our clients. Our own financial house is on the line.
Finally, our model creates the freedom to operate on a prospective clients’ timeline rather than our own. We have no quotas. We have no deadlines. We spend time getting to know prospective clients while they get to know us. Then they let us know if they decide to work with us.
Funny thing… most do.
We’ve written this note for two purposes. First, to provide a behind-the-scenes look at the philosophy of our firm and to answer the question what makes you different? Second, hoping that if you find yourself in a conversation with a friend or a neighbor, or if someone simply needs a sympathetic ear, you might let them know we’re always willing to listen and to help where we can.
Sean Cawley, CFP® & Rory Hartmann, CFP®
Neither asset allocation nor diversification guarantee against investment loss. All investments and investment strategies involve risk, including loss of principal.
Content here is for illustrative and educational purposes only. It is not legal, tax, or individualized financial advice; nor is it a recommendation to buy, sell, or hold any specific security, or engage in any specific trading strategy. Results will vary. Past performance is no indication of future results or success. Market conditions change continuously.
This commentary reflects the personal opinions, viewpoints, and analyses of Resolute Wealth Management. It does not necessarily represent those of RFG Advisory, clients, or employees. This commentary should be regarded as a description of advisory services provided by Resolute Wealth Management or RFG Advisory, or performance returns of any client. The views reflected in the commentary are subject to change at any time without notice.