By Mike Byrnes
To effectively work with millionaires and billionaires, you may have to change your approach.
Attendees at the First Annual Elite Wealth Management Conference in Boston, sponsored by Private Wealth magazine, heard from various experts who offered their advice on how to serve the ultra-affluent.
Richard Flynn, a Rothstein Kass principal who leads the firm's Family Office Group, said the wealthy are worrying about geopolitical issues and the election, but their top concerns are sustainability, preservation and passing wealth.
"The greatest transfer of wealth is going to happen right here," Flynn said. "[The super rich] can get any [advisor] they want. You have to be in the top 1 percent of advisors."
Today it is easier to find "submerged whales," because the super rich are not as secretive as they used to be about their wealth, Flynn said. This change has come because just about everyone is sharing information on the Internet.
But wealthy families are hard to get and hard to keep as clients, Flynn noted. Financial advisors need to hear what the needs of these families are and work with other top professionals to serve them. "Listen. Truly listen. Find out what their pain point is, as they don't have to buy what you are selling," shared Flynn.
Russ Alan Prince, founder of Prince and Associates and PW magazine's editor-at large, agreed. "You have to be able to listen. Stop talking! Most advisors push products and sell what they have, not what the client wants," he said. "You have to ask the right questions and understand what you can do. Know what the issues of the client are and have the solutions to fit the client. You have to have a platform that is going to give the support you need to provide that client."
The platform Prince recommended is a "war room," when experts get together and talk about how to help a client. It allows all the parties to discuss solutions together so that repetitive meetings are avoided and a financial advisor has a complete grasp of the best ways to serve the ultra-wealthy on a variety of fronts.
The added knowledge will help a financial advisor bring in new business. "Do the war rooms -- you learn all the opportunities," Prince said.
Mike Byrnes is a national speaker and owner of Byrnes Consulting LLC. His firm provides consulting services to help advisors become even more successful. Need help with business planning, marketing strategy, business development, client service and management effectiveness? Read more at ByrnesConsulting.com and follow @ByrnesConsultin.