We are approaching the end of the year. There’s no doubt that 2016 has been an unusual year in terms of market growth and the contentious U.S. election. There have been many issues to deal with that have perhaps taken you away from focusing on your business.
Late November tends to be a time focused on Thanksgiving and the upcoming holidays. Business tends to almost come to a standstill. Phones die down and there are fewer client emails. Clients are busy with holiday parties and visiting family members.
But that doesn’t mean you have to put your business on the back burner. This is a great time to plan and establish your 2017 business growth strategies in order to really get a handle on where you’ve been and where you want to go. This is so that you are operating your business intentionally rather than by accident.
What should you be looking at for end of year tasks?
1. End of Year Business Planning
What I ask of all my clients is to write their Business Plan for the upcoming year. Dedicating time in November or December to strategically approach next year is time well spent. If you have never done it before, writing your first Business Plan can be a bit time-consuming as you have to think about all the big issues. But once you have that first plan, you simply need to update it for each consecutive year, making planning a breeze!
2. End of Year Financial Metrics
Do you track financial data for your clients? Of course you do! You are a financial planner and that’s your job. But do you track financial metrics for your own firm? The end of the year is a great time to look at your numbers and compare them to a year ago. What metrics should you review? Here’s a list to get you started:
- AUM versus 1 and 5 years ago
- Number of household accounts
- Number of prospective client meetings this year
- Percentage of prospective clients who become new clients
- Clients per advisor
- Clients per total staff
- Revenue per client
- Revenue per staff
- Operating profit per staff
3. End of Year Check-in on your Website and/or LinkedIn Profile
Has your website become obsolete? Does your LinkedIn profile need an update? If you’re not happy with the quality of clients you’ve been attracting, it may be time for a brand update. What type of client would you most like to work with? If you are not getting referrals to the quality of clients you desire, it’s time to ask for more! Give centers of influence and your referral partners a better idea of who you work best with. Use this information in your website copy and your LinkedIn profile.
The vast majority of financial advisors who contact me are not achieving their goals because they are not giving their business the focus needed to achieve results. Make 2017 the year you break out of obscurity, work on your business, and achieve your goals. These three end of year tasks can help you make progress.
Most advisors need their own Business Coach to make these meaningful changes. If you want more for your practice and your life, contact me for a consultation.