3 Steps to Finding a Great Financial Advisor

3 Steps to Finding a Great Financial Advisor

Choosing a financial advisor is tough. Almost everywhere you look, there's a new option and opinion available to develop for your financial future. So, the real question becomes: How can you differentiate from the everyday financial advisor - the one that's only interested in the selling investment products that eventually pack their salary - compared to the local, trusted financial advisor that can really manage your financial future?

We always encourage clients to do their research. Like you would any other purchase, you want to make sure you're prepared. One way to be prepared is to just simply ask your trusted friends and family members. Although comparing finances with family members and loved ones can get messy, we find that it's always smart to get recommendations from those that have similar needs and outlooks to your lifestyle. Another great way to see what's out there is by looking online for financial investors that are working in your local area. A lot of these investors may have different philosophies about there practice, so keep in mind these questions:

  • Are they a fiduciary - do they invest solely to benefit the client or are they instructed to invest in a certain way?   
  • How do they charge for their services - do they work off a sales commission or a percentage/hourly rate? 
  • How often would these charges take place?
  • What are their credentials as a financial planner?  
  • And finally, what are their strengths or philosophies as a financial planner - what sets them apart from others around the area?


Once these waters are tested, keep in mind these certain qualities that many people find important when selecting a financial advisor.


1. Trustworthy

It's no secret that the client-advisor relationship is based on a foundation of trust. While many top performing advisors seem to do an incredibly good job of building a top-notch image of trust, finding an advisor that is actually trustworthy can be a bit more difficult. Selecting an advisor who is down to earth, sticks to their word, and always keeps their promise can be a challenge. 

Now, is an advisor dishonest if they can’t guarantee a return on your investment over a short period of time? Absolutely not. It's almost impossible to guarantee that for any financial client. But what they can promise is they are researching diligently and working hard for you. Take into consideration the small, little things that are done in order to paint the larger picture for your investments. Many advisors seem to be naturally charismatic people, but following through is the important part.


2. Action-oriented

It's not enough to simply have great ideas - the most successful advisors know that it's all about putting good ideas to work. Great advisors are always ready to take action and get the ball rolling. They want to set deadlines and get working on making great ideas turn into successful ideas. How can you identify action-oriented advisors? Look for someone who is ready to get moving and sets concrete deadlines for themselves.


3. Sets high standards

Top performing advisors set unrealistic goals. But most importantly, they find a way to meet these goals.  They make a habit of setting standards really high and somehow, they find a way to meet them. Advisors who think about their goals in terms of opportunities rather than challenges are better at thinking outside of the box. This trait doesn't just apply on the job - the most successful advisors set high standards in all areas of life. Look for advisors who are active in the community and active in learning outside of work. 

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