As a financial advisor, it’s essential to prioritize planning, according to Brandon Stukey, a fellow financial planner. It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day tasks of running a practice, such as marketing and client appointments, but neglecting your own business plan can lead to inefficiencies and a lack of progress towards your goals.
Stukey emphasizes the importance of having a written business development plan, which should include a growth goal that’s both realistic and feasible, as well as factors beyond income, such as lifestyle and free time. A plan that lays out where you want to be in three years can serve as a guide to establish whether you’re trending in the right direction quarter over quarter and year over year.
Your business plan should also consider factors such as lead generation, marketing campaigns, and how many appointments are necessary to achieve your goals. Taking the time to think through all of this can save months, if not years, of frustration, or prevent you from overspending on the way to your desired end result. The worst-case scenario is that you never reach your goal, and your practice becomes unenjoyable and inefficient.
Stukey offers a “next level blueprint” that breaks down each phase of a practice, allowing you to think through where you want to be and how to get there. He recommends revising and reviewing the plan at least quarterly, rather than waiting for January 1st.
As a financial advisor, you should take the time to think about where you want to be in 36 months and break that down into the next 12 months, setting realistic targets for new clients, revenue per client, revenue to the firm, seminar numbers, and lead generation. Don’t try to eat the whole elephant in one bite, but break it down into achievable steps. Those who take the time to plan and revise their plan regularly are more likely to achieve their goals and build a successful practice.