The following blog post was originally published in ProducersWeb:
Recently, I interviewed USA Financial’s CEO, Mike Walters, regarding practice management as it relates to how financial advisors are spending their time. Mike shared the three things many advisors aren’t spending enough time on. More importantly he explained how they can begin to implement these three things to help grow their practices. Following is a transcript of our conversation:
Mersman: Mike, I know one thing that a lot of advisors — I think all of us — face to some extent is time management. And ultimately, we’ve got a certain amount of time in the day and we want to grow our practices.
So, I want you to walk through a few things some advisors struggle with as it relates to time management — what they’re spending their time on versus what they should be spending their time on — and hopefully it will be a little bit of a guide to help people look at their practice a little bit differently in what they’re doing with their time.
Walters: I mean, that’s a huge conversation. So I’ll pivot off of an article in a moment. But one of the things that I tell people when advisors who work with us come in for consulting days and so on, the quick kind of synopsis I always give them is: Everything you do, every job in your practice (whether it’s a role that you play or whether it’s a role that you have a staffer hired to play), everything has to either drive revenue or drive profits. I mean, it doesn’t matter what the role is. When the rubber hits the road, their job is to do one or both of these things.
So if you are there to gather the assets to bring the clients into the firm, you’re primarily driving revenue. If you’re there to manage the expenses, to administer the process and the flows of transactions through the business, then you’re there to drive profits rather than revenues. One way or the other, that’s what the game’s about. And so from a starting point, anything you’re doing that falls outside of the realm of those two issues is something you shouldn’t spend your time your time on.
That’s stepping point number one. Stepping point number two is that people just get sideways inside their business. I mean, we run in a complex environment and it’s easy to get side-tracked — the shiny objects, as we say. You see a shiny object and immediately your attention focuses on it rather than what’s driving revenue or driving profits. And the stats that are out there are pretty mind-boggling in terms of where advisors spend their time versus where they know they should spend their time.