Financial advisors pour so much time and energy into building their businesses and cultivating high-quality relationships with clients. Yet, they often don’t put in a fraction of the thought when it comes to succession planning even though the implications are massive in terms of maximizing the firm’s value or ensuring that employees remain satisfied and business continues successfully operating.
For ThinkAdvisor, Buckingham Strategic Wealth’s MIchael Kitces shares some advice on successful succession planning. He recommends starting with honest and frequent dialogue between owners and younger advisors who may have expectations about their role in the firm’s future. Older advisors can also choose to transition at their own pace and may give up certain responsibilities while continuing to do the parts of the job they enjoy.
Part of this communication strategy is to be open about uncertainty rather than repeatedly changing plans which can lead to frustration. Another common mistake is to think about every decision as being binary rather than thinking about compromises between valid, competing interests. Finally, remember that succession planning is ultimately about maximizing the value of the firm in the present and setting it up for success in the future.
Finsum: Succession planning is the final major decision that advisors will make in their careers. Here are some ways to maximize your chances of success.