- Business development
- Personal growth
- Business skills
As a financial advisor you advise clients on where to invest their assets. But where should you spend your valuable money when it comes to investing in your own skills and practice growth? The answer to this question varies depending upon your personal circumstances. I believe you should allocate a certain percentage of your annual budget to growth. Not just marketing and promotions but personal growth.
While there’s no magic number designating what you should spend on business development or marketing, a good range is between 10 – 30% depending upon your business size and revenue. This number frequently includes branding, marketing tactics, marketing materials, web presence, and the like.
Now spending on personal growth is another matter. You should ALWAYS be striving for growth in your skills, whether business or personal. Skills you acquire help you become not only a better financial planner, but a well rounded human being (not to mention a more interesting person with whom to hold a conversation).
Grow your income
Money spent to help you grow your revenue is a worthwhile investment. This would include investments in your marketing concepts such as client appreciation events, webinars, and referral campaigns. These tactics help raise awareness and put your name and face in front of clients and prospective clients.
I have a client who turned away from seminar marketing in the past year and began investing in providing value to his clients through events. It was slow going at first, but he’s now getting feedback that his clients love the new focus and he’s receiving referrals unlike in years past. He’s still spending the same amount of money but now he’s investing in his clients and they can tell.
If you haven’t invested in your brand in the past three to five years, this can be worthwhile although the return on investment is longer term. Seeing as the marketplace has changed, reviewing your strategic position and how that relates to your ideal client can help you look at the bigger picture and the real value you provide that no one else does. This begs the question: what do you do better than your competition?
Money spent to grow your investment management skills, financial planning knowledge, and client relationship skills is invaluable. These are skills you use daily. When you sharpen these skills you become more confident which in turn projects success.
Money spent to hire coaches and consultants can also be money well spent. You are too close to your own business to see the forest for the trees. Your faults and assets may not be what you think they are. Bringing these issues to the surface helps you manage long term success and allows you to avoid many mistakes your peers make.
So my question for you is: What skills do you lack and what are you going to do about it?
Improve your health
We all know that the first wealth is health yet many advisors avoid putting their well being on the front burner. Garbage in results in garbage out. How do you think you come across when you don’t take care of your body? When you treat your body like a temple it rewards you.
Money spent on maintaining a healthful lifestyle shows up in areas you may not consider. When you show your clients, family, and friends that you place a high importance on going to the gym, hiring a personal trainer, eating organic food, and regulating your body’s hormones, you are showing leadership. You are setting a good example.
The best part about investing in your health is that you are better able to handle the stresses of everyday living. Your mind becomes stronger and protects you against the stress of market declines, annoying clients, and busy schedules.
Get a better life
The above mentioned investments help you improve the quality of your life, and that is the point, isn’t it??? When you invest in your skills, marketing, branding, health, and lifestyle, these factors contribute to overall happiness.
Having more income comes with a myriad of benefits. For me, travel is one of the greatest. There are many cultures and countries waiting for you to visit. I come from an international family, originally from Australia, and now living all over the world including Myanmar and Thailand. This gives me a unique perspective on life issues and allows me to be a well-rounded person.
Affluent clients are well-rounded and well-traveled. They are sophisticated and appreciate the finer things in life. When you can hold an interesting conversation about domestic and international issues, you have the ability to bond with the affluent. Being able to interact and hold an intelligent conversation make you a more interesting person.
Investing in business skills and personal growth brings long term success to your practice. Whether it’s investing in marketing, travel, or business success, it’s all the same. We don’t work hard for nothing. There has to be a reason for everything we do. Don’t get stuck in inertia. Don’t let procrastination stop you from your best investment: YOU.