Tomorrow, Today: The Future of Financial Services

by Nicholas Ross
Advisor looking out Surge Business Consulting blog

The future of financial services is here. It simply hasn’t been widely accepted yet.

A usual laggard to innovation, financial services is drastically evolving. Looking back a year, every advisor can construct a quick list of available advancements that alter the way financial advisors and retail consumers conduct business. This year, it’ll be another year of drastic change for financial services.

The Future of Financial Services

Consumers will continue to scrutinize the value aspect of their financial alliances. Technology will add efficiencies in everything from process competencies to the timing of transactions. It’ll even affect the way we communicate with clients in the future of financial services.

Not to mention, demand for solid professional advice will increase as the financial marketplace becomes harder for households to navigate. This requires the financial professional to select optimal relationships for every vertical of their business to continue to offer the best planning, products, and processes to its clientele.

Related: The Quick Guide: What Do Clients Really Want from a Financial Advisor?
woman advisor looking over finance report

Utilizing the best tech and new-age strategies will help continuously adapt.

Wealth Counselors

It used to be effective for financial professionals to isolate themselves into one or two offerings. The insurance agent was a specialist in life insurance. The retirement planner generally offered a few products in and around retirement income. And the term broker or investment professional was commonly used for stock and bonds. However, as we deliver with conviction: the future is now. And the only way to thrive is to continuously adapt.

At Surge, we label the financial advisor of the future The Wealth Counselor™, and they’ll be the key conduit for all household financial planning. Nothing will get to or from the retail household without them. The Wealth Counselor™ may not offer every household planning need but will know exactly where to go to get the right alliances for their business. The Wealth Counselor™ will have a great opportunity—and responsibility—to selectively align with the perfect partners for them and their clients. Is that how you envision yourself in the future of financial services?

Related: Your Clients Need These 3 Things

Requirements for Alignment

There are three specific requirements of your broker-dealer (BD), registered investment advisor (RIA), independent marketing organization (IMO), and/or brokerage general agent (BGA). They include guidance and pure recommendations, expertise in products and process, and regulatory and compliance comprehension.

You’re hired to provide advice. And you remain hired if the client believes the advice is superior to other sources. Growing complexities in today’s households place greater emphasis on objective guidance and education in specific household planning recommendations. Wealth counselors like yourself must confirm who they choose to work with and through to construct the right solutions for any given plan.

The alliance must be educated and able to be diverse in recommendations. You must not favor any institution. You must remain agile as new facts are discovered in the planning process. Any lesser result may cost time—and most importantly—the client relationship. Regularly test your strategic alliances for consistent expert planning output.

man playing chess

It should be strictly strategic when it comes to your alliances.

Retail clients have access to product intelligence with single clicks. From health to hospitality, consumers are conditioned to do their homework. Finance is no exception. Expect clients to come to you with questions and ideas of their own. Not to implement necessarily, but to seek your professional expertise to execute on their behalf. The future of financial services depends on it.

This forces you, The Wealth Counselor™ to ensure your alliances have superb and creative planning knowledge in their respective fields. You should never feel they you need to question outputs or be required to seek second opinions. You should have as much confidence in your strategic alliances as your own staff.

Related: Artificial Intelligence Boosts Your Business Smarts

Regulation is Here to Stay

Regulation and a client-centric authority are here to stay. Most of you will confidently state that you have and always will remain client-centric in all conduct and recommendation. That doesn’t mean regulators will agree and not fight for continued consumer protectionary methods and rules. This’ll be costly for your business and require you to continuously adjust business practices and processes.

Your alliances shouldn’t only fully understand adjustments, but they should also be able to swiftly enact changes that make regulatory adjustments easy on your business model and protect you from issues. Some alliances may provide you with expert counsel on rules and regulation, while the best firms will be there with ongoing resources and processes to help make conducting business simplistic.

Welcome to the future of financial services.
Welcome to tomorrow, today.

As you decide how and whom to conduct business with, be certain to have a plan for your selection and ongoing diligence. The future of financial services will get easier in some ways and tighter in others. As you face your valued client base, be certain you have the very best behind you.

Do you have what it takes to be a Wealth Counselor™?

Surge Business Consulting engages financial professionals to create tailored business solutions to maximize growth in their respective businesses. Through a unique ’20/20 process’, Surge holds itself and the Wealth Counselor™ accountable for reaching new heights together.

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©Surge Business Consulting 2019.  All Rights Reserved.  The thoughts and opinions expressed herein are those of its authors only.  This is not tax or legal advice.  This article is for educational purposes only.  Written exclusively for Financial Independence Group.  This article shall not be circulated without expressed written permission from Surge Business Consulting or Financial Independence Group. 

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