After spending 17 years in the asset management business where I interacted with some type of advisor every day, my transition into this role has given me some much-need perspective on the profession from a very different vantage point. When you're trying to fit your product or investment strategy into someone else's business, that becomes the lens through which you see everything.

These days, I spend most of my time hunting for the newest trends, the latest offerings, the really unique and distinctive activities that leading advisory firms are doing to pull away from their competition-and those topics often color the way my colleagues and I think about your business. It's easy to forget that most advisors have the Herculean task of navigating those hot issues at the same time they manage a mature business built around concepts, products and services that may seem passé by comparison.

I recently received an e-mail that helped bring the situation to light from the principal of an established wealth management firm with affluent clientele in Northern New Jersey. He mentioned his firm's recent expansion into the service areas typically associated with family offices, such as concierge services. As more and more of their clients rely on the firm as a central coordinating point for other financial, business and professional relationships, he and his partner are faced with the task of restructuring their team to provide dedicated lifestyle support to their clients. In the same e-mail, he mentioned mutual funds as a critical part of their business and a topic he would like to see get more coverage in Private Wealth. It took me a minute to process the unexpected juxtaposition of mutual funds, a mainstream product owned by almost half of all US households, with the indulgence of concierge services that are used by less than half of one percent of the worldwide population. But there it was ... a very real example of how today's successful advisors must manage both ends of the spectrum to stay abreast of their clients' needs, and a sign of just how radically some parts of the advisory business have evolved in response to the boom in private wealth and the corresponding validation of professional advice from a growing and influential population.

Good luck and good fortune ...