There’s a big difference between working together and thriving together, as any member of a team can attest. Even though one may require a little more effort, it has a huge payoff for you and the clients you serve. At advisory firms, admins are the glue that can help offices run efficiently, and advisors provide the service that keeps loyal clients coming back. Both have a huge impact on the firm’s overall success—but working harmoniously is sometimes easier said than done. We work with thousands of teams, large and small, and want to share a few tips on how to make your firm a well-oiled, fearless investing machine.
Here are five ways that admins and advisors can work better together.
Share Data, Not Logins
Easy access to data is essential for running a streamlined firm. Administrators need to be able to run reports, advisors need to be able to share their screen or complete stress tests in meetings, and both need to be able to schedule follow-ups and notes in their CRM. You know a bad way to streamline data? Sharing login information.
Not only is sharing logins a potential security and compliance problem, it requires another level of coordination that distracts admins and advisors from the most important aspects of their jobs. Discuss with your technology providers if they offer special licenses for admins/advisors/ IT. This ensures that everyone has exactly the access they need without having to coordinate who is in the program, logging in and out from different devices, or logging tasks elsewhere until they’re able to log in again.
Adopt Your Own Mission and Values
A team that works well together usually has something that unites them; whether it’s an unwavering dedication to customer service, a love of the industry, or a love of making money (and that’s okay too), having a singular vision has a way of bringing people together and keeping them on track. That task is all but impossible without a clearly-communicated mission and values.
Firms that have their mission, principles, and beliefs in words create a standard that every team must meet, and when everyone works for a common goal it facilitates understanding. But it’s not enough to have them, everyone should take them to heart and apply them to their role accordingly. Don’t leave it to senior leadership, or HR, or “someone else” to implement. Start a conversation!
At Riskalyze, we had each of our mission and values made into signs for all of our offices—and more importantly—our employees walk the walk! We really love mission and values around here, and no firm is too small to feel the same way.
Create a Workflow That Works
Coordinating the handoff between client intake, client meeting, and client follow-up doesn’t have to be a struggle. Create a workflow so that everyone is one the same page. When preparing for a client meeting, it can be easy for each team to be confused or overwhelmed.
- Who will make sure that all client information is up to date in our CRM and other software?
- Who will print the reports and when will they be handed off?
- Who will enter action items following the meeting?
- Who will follow up with clients in different contexts?
Instead of assuming task ownership, come together and create a flowchart for each stage of the process so that everyone knows their part in every successful client meeting.
We created a sample workflow between advisors and assistants that shows what a handoff could look like. Maybe you could adapt it for your own firm!
Brand Like A Team
Working as a team means also presenting yourself as a team, and branding can play an important role in making that happen. A logo isn’t just something for business cards, it’s a visual representation of your firm and your mission. Any software deployed by your firm should have a way for you to manage your firm’s logo as well as any disclaimer text and any client-facing reports. This makes all of your messaging consistent and predictable. Whether it’s an assistant, an advisor, or an executive sending an email or printing a report, you operate as a team and eliminate friction when reaching out to clients.
Consider making these items standard across departments:
• Email signatures
• Business Cards
Have a Game Plan for Client Communications
Two of the biggest reasons that clients fire their advisor are directly related to communication, so it’s important that advisors and administrators are on the same page. Create a cohesive strategy so that every member of the team knows how to communicate with clients, can set the right expectations, and represents the firm’s mission and values. For example, set a policy on when and how your office can be reached and make it clear on documents, emails, voicemails, and anywhere that’s appropriate. Don’t be afraid to delegate. You may not want all communications going directly to an advisor. In many cases, clients call in for status checks and other non-urgent reasons and administrators may be capable of handling these requests more easily and just as effectively (especially if they have their own access to the firm’s software programs).
Teams are happier when they have the tools they need to succeed. We developed Riskalyze Premier with teams in mind and the unique challenges they face. Working in a collaborative environment and accommodating multi-department functions has never been easier. Riskalyze Premier has your firm covered from front office to corner office.
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