The Ostrich Syndrome
Your future is now! Never before has there been such an opportunity to make a positive impact on your life as there is at this moment.
Is your financial advisor equipped to handle affluent clients? What should you expect from a relationship and how do you define the difference between a super advisor and a mediocre one – in today’s article we will show you some of our real time findings.
Sapphire Blue Investment Partners, Inc. is continuing to grow its presence as one of the highly recognized and trusted firms with a commitment to contact, service and transparency. A frequent contributor to numerous media outlets, we believe our attention to detail is the differentiator that separates us from the pack, creating a significant inflow of new clientele.
Over the past 10 years our firm has partnered with an industry leader that has drilled down into the wants, needs and expectations of today’s affluent elite. Here is what they have told us they desire.*
How should the affluent select their financial advisor?
Reputation and word of mouth influence are the key impact factors. They want to be introduced by a business associate or another leading professional. They desire a combination of quality and recognition of the advisor’s competency and professionalism.
What kind of relationship do today’s affluent prefer?
Providing comprehensive wealth management and overseeing the totality of their family’s financial affairs should be a reasonable expectation of today’s affluent. A qualified advisor expands the relationship to include a social relationship with spouse and family. We find it an interesting phenomenon that for whatever reason, husbands handle the family investments and other financial affairs, while women statistically outlive men. Consequently, we see frequently, widows that come to us in panic mode with little or no idea of what to do from a financial or emotional aspect. We work with a number of suddenly single women who have come to us by introduction of a current client.
Is service meeting their expectations?
As an affluent investor you should deserve and receive service beyond your expectations – yet only *42% of affluent respondents reported that they get their calls returned within 1-2 hours – the other *58% find their advisor as unresponsive. This breeds poor service and is a loyalty killer – why would you do business with an advisor who is not responsive to your needs?
What is the affluent getting and what are they paying?
The study shows that far too many advisors are focused on the portfolio return only, that they miss the true target of overseeing the multi-dimensional aspects of their client’s and family’s financial affairs. That is really the wrong focus. The affluent investor should be working with an advisor whose ability allows them to go deep into coordinating their total financial affairs.
Costs, Costs, Costs
Today’s affluent elite recognize that cheap is not necessarily best; however, they should demand full transparency of the costs. Some advisors may not fully disclose the costs of investment products they represent. Many mutual funds and annuities are not only complex but expensive. Caveat Emptor, let the buyer beware. The affluent investor may be better served in a privately managed account whereas individual ownership of stocks and bonds managed by a professional institutional asset manager trumps many of the alternatives.
Beware of the free dinner seminar!
I have attended numerous free seminars to observe the true intentions of the presenters. Often the presenter is a polished, well-dressed orator that conveniently leads the unwary investor into their product sales lair where the attendee can be lured into an investment product represented that may be profitable for the presenter and not necessarily the best investment for the attendee. As an affluent investor, you may want to avoid these types of programs.
Sapphire Blue Investment typically works on a fee based structure which fully aligns our interests with the affluent client’s. Our attention to detail is unparalleled in the world of today’s advisory firms. We are extremely comfortable working with the 2- to 50-million-dollar investor; however, we are often a good fit for those who are not there yet, but desire a solid, well-thought-out financial relationship with a firm that understands their needs.
What to do next!
As an affluent individual if you are not 100% satisfied with the contact, 100% satisfied with the service or 100% satisfied with the results of your current financial advisor, we would welcome the opportunity to speak with you about what a relationship with our firm could mean to you.
Sapphire Blue Investment Partners, Inc. is an independent firm with securities offered through Summit Brokerage Services, Inc., Member FINRA, SIPC, Advisory services offered through Summit Financial Group Inc., a Registered Investment Advisor. Hensler and Associates Wealth Management, Hensler Aviation and Physicians Wealth Management are all divisions of Sapphire Blue Investment Partners, Inc. Each division of Sapphire Blue Investment Partners, Inc. is also independent of Summit Brokerage Services, Inc., and all of its affiliates. *The Oeschli Institute Study Dated 1/2016