There are an almost infinite number of details that you can work on when planning to establish your own business as an independent financial advisor. But I want to outline those critical few things that you absolutely must have when you make the move. In particular, I’m focused on the first ninety days of your new practice.
If you’re working in employee model (at a wirehouse etc)-- here is the fifth thing I think you need to think about (mostly in order) to set up your own practice.
If you would rather listen to this in audio, you can also listen to the entire list in episode 26 of our podcast by clicking HERE.
Now we'll start to get in the more of the day-to-day stuff that I think is critical. And I'd preface this by saying I don't think a lot of things are critical. At least the first few months you want to make sure you don't miss the things that will slow your ability to move clients over and to get going in doing business immediately. But I'm gonna focus on the things that I think are absolute to have to have for every advisor.
5) A Phone
The fifth one is pretty simple: you need a PHONE. It doesn't have to be fancy. It can be a landline, a Voice Over IP (VOIP) system, or if you can use your cellphone temporarily as your only phone-- I know advisors that run their whole business via their cellphone.
I personally like having a VoIP and a landline capability. I use Google Voice that as I've talked about in other episodes to route my calls. But you need to have the phone system operational, know how to use it, make sure the calls that come in get to you (I think this is why a lot of people opt for their cellphones, because it's the most simple and direct option -- a lot of clients probably already have that number).
You need to know how to use voicemail, email, web browser, whatever else communicating you need to do. A solid smartphone is a critical item at this point. But you also need to have make sure whatever phone you use as your main office system---whether it's VOIP, POTS (plain old telephone system), or whatever--is configured to work properly and you know how to use it well. You want be able to communicate easily with your clients, especially in those first few weeks where you're probably on the phone quite a bit when you're not in front of people face-to-face.