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 seventh 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.
7) A Place to Work
You will need A PLACE TO WORK. Notice that I did not say “office.” As you may have heard in the podcast, I've had people that work remotely from home and meeting with clients wherever is the most convenient for clients.
I've come across and talked to enough advisors that work from home that I don't think it's a requirement to have a successful business to have an office. Now that said, there are some perception benefits, if nothing else, to having your own space. Again that might be its own episode -- the pros and cons of working remotely versus working in an office even if it's just you.
So if you have your own office you wanna make sure that is all ready to go, deal with little details that are necessary to get that set up that ties back to number five (the phone system) make sure that's working correctly, if you're gonna have a desktop computer (number six in my list) make sure that's up and ready to go. A lot of these things, it might feel like you have a million things to deal with as business owner but keep in mind: these are all startup investments of time; these aren't the kinds of things you typically spend your time on on a day-to-day basis.
I think there's the fear of "oh my gosh I'm gonna spend all my time trying to fix my computer or taking out the trash or fixing the phone system when it doesn't work." And certainly those things happen, but this is a crash of activity because you're going into this with nothing -- at least I'm assuming that.
So you have a place to work, if that's an office make sure it's functional, make sure it looks the way you want for when client comes in where do they sit, what's their experience. If it's from a home office also important make sure it's well-established, well-defined, if you have family members that are there during the work hours that you're gonna be working make sure they're aware of what you're doing and when and how, try to figure out how you're gonna use the space together if you're in the same house or parts of a house.
But a home office setup is not difficult to establish but you wanna make sure everything's in place, check your technology, again especially if you're changing things from the internet infrastructure or adding phone lines or make sure things are operational before you pull the plug and resign from your old firm. This is again basic stuff but I wanna cover it because the last thing you need to be dealing is messing around with technology as used the first few weeks or months that you're trying to reach out to your clients to establish the foundation of your practice, from a revenue standpoint.