Surveys show the first thing that people many think about when they hear “coach” is the aggressive tone and yelling that is involved in competitive sports.
However, this is not, or better yet, should not be the case when it comes to financial advisor coaching.
According to the ICF, coaching is partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.
Let’s dive into the two most common forms of coaching in the financial services sector.
What is financial advisor coaching?
This article focuses on financial advisors finding coaches who can assist them in building field-related skills.
It also looks at how a financial advisor can double as a financial coach.
So, it is important to understand what a financial advisor is and how it is different from being a financial coach. A financial advisor is meant to help a client handle finances that he already has.
He is intended to provide wealth-building advice so that the client can manage his existing assets efficiently and wisely.
On the other hand, a financial coach provides tips on getting to that initial wealth.
The advice may include making the client adjust his lifestyle to earn and save more. A lot of the books on finances are from coaches.
Advisors can also work on his coaching, among other skills, to provide more holistic financial services to his client.
Let’s look at the qualities of financial advisor coaching:
Financial advisor coaching hinges on a relationship. It is one built on trust, consistency, and progress.
The client approaches the coach because he believes that the latter can boost his financial management knowledge and efficiency. Meanwhile, the coach must trust that the client can follow the steps that he can provide.
This is not a one-off consultancy thing. You will meet with your clients regularly and according to their needs.
Do not forget to keep their trust by providing them with workable solutions. Remember, it is trust or hope that had brought them to you. Do not let that trust down.
Let the communication flow freely between the two of you. Talking is a very important part of any relationship.
Your client must be honest about his concerns, and you must not be afraid to point out anything wrong with his current financial strategies.
The coach acts as an accountability partner
What can make the relationship work better is if you see yourself as an accountability partner. Your work does not end after you have given your advice.
You must also help your client towards success, whether your client is nearly in crisis or someone who is already fairly successful.
By being the accountability partner, you set yourself up to take on some of the planning burdens. You also check on your client to make sure he follows through with his side of the bargain.
As a financial coach, you know that you must be more intuned with your client’s emotions. This is not a quick transaction that can be completed in just one go. You are invested in your client’s continuous progress.
Financial coaching does not promote products and services
When you are coaching someone on his finances, you should not be doing it to specifically promote products and services.
You are not supposed to be selling a product because of some bias or incentive. Instead, educate yourself on the best products and services out there. Recommend the most appropriate to each client. Not all products are one size fits all.
Moreover, you should not serve as a gateway to another service. You commit to providing financial coaching; you must do it.
You do not want to blindside your client by turning him over to somebody else. Be upfront with whether you can assist him from the beginning.
The problem here is that financial advisors are also typically tied in with a financial product, such as insurance.
If you are trained as an advisor, there will be an urge to recommend some products that you are familiar with. Try to ease on this when a client approached you for coaching services.
You can provide some examples of products if asked, but do not go for the hard sell.
It is powerful when paired with financial advising
Again, there is a difference between financial advising and financial coaching. Financial advising, which you are educated and trained for, is all about working on existing assets. You are not expected to work with a blank slate.
On the other hand, financial coaching is bent on taking nothing and growing something out of it.
Put together, advising and coaching can be quite powerful. However, it can be a stressful responsibility. You will not only help your client manage what he has but also help him find ways to build on that.
It promotes financial literacy
You cannot coach from a vacuum. Whatever you advise your client has a basis in financial theory and also in reality.
When you are doling out strategies, you cannot just tell your client, “because I say so.” When you are providing advice, you are also teaching.
Why financial advisor coaching is a good idea
Financial advisors have the role of giving their clients vital advice on how to manage their finances.
This is important because people who usually seek a financial advisor’s help are either busy or are overwhelmed by various issues.
A financial advisor can also provide coaching. If you are one, you can still coach your clients on managing what they do have.
It does not matter if the existing wealth is little or a lot. If the client sought your help and you accepted, you basically promise to assist him with what he needs.
You will indeed earn more if you are working with high-income clients, but you can squeeze in some smaller portfolios without weighing you down too much.
When you are coaching your client, you know that you are helping him go through a lifestyle change. It is not just about juggling income and distributing money among various expenses.
That would have been easily remedied by a tracking app. Coaching also takes the mental and emotional condition of the client.
You read that right. Some advisors may be expected to provide coaching because some clients are starting mostly from scratch.
Another reason would be because some clients need all the mental and emotional support that they can get so that they can turn their finances around.
A financial advisor, however, also needs someone to coach them to achieve specific business development goals.
Why Financial Advisors Also Need Coaches
Financial advisors can work as coaches. However, they also need someone to coach them.
New financial advisors certainly need to find a coach who can help them build their business. They need someone who can help them gain the confidence to get out there.
Financial advisors who have suddenly felt a plateau may also need the help of coaches. Do you want to have the same trickling number of clients?
That means limited expansion and income. It can also mean boredom and not being stuck in a rut. You have already built a relationship with your current clients but do not know how to boost yourself and them further.
It is also possible that you are a go-getter. You are always striving higher.
If you have built relationships with certain types of clients, you want to know how to get through the barricades set by others. Yes, you are helping your clients, but you also need help to keep on progressing.
Your Personal Brand
In your quest to become a financial advisor/coach, you also need someone to guide you towards highlighting your personal brand.
When it comes to handling the wealth of a person or family you better believe that they will do their due diligence and research on you.
Part of your focus should be on making sure your ideal new clients will see credibility building social proof, and resources on your authority in the financial planning space.
While your field has strong growth potential, it also presents a lot of competition. So, you need to stand out.
That is one of the focuses of the FA Advantage Community.
We strive to not only help you attract your ideal new clients but give you the tips you need to grow a strong personal brand that you can leverage into more leads and professional opportunities.
Find Gaps You’re Missing
Sometimes we get too close to the task and can’t see the big picture. A coach lends a fresh set of eyes that can objectively help you with the specific task you are trying to solve in your business.
They can also help you identify the things that are not helpful in saving you time, energy, and money.
Identifying Strengths and Weaknesses
FA’s have many different tasks. Some of those tasks will help us grow and some of them will hurt us.
The lines can get blurred on what our focus should be on when we have so much going on in a day.
A coach can help identify the things it may be time to delegate to someone better suited to the task while you focus on your core strengths.
Overcoming Mental Roadblocks
You live and breathe financial planning day in and day out.
How does it feel when a client comes in, and for whatever reason, challenges many of your recommendations?
I’m sure, not great.
But as an FA you must work to help them overcome those mental roadblocks they have experienced.
Whether it is a simple as what they have read online or past financial hardships that keep them from seeing the bigger picture.
A coach helps you in the same way. There are some things that you do that you feel are necessary to grow your book of business but may not be the best thing for you.
Someone that you trust to come in with an unbiased eye can be beneficial to your growth.
Increase Business revenue
The primary goal of a coach is to increase your bottom line.
When you are deciding on a coach be sure that the thing you are bringing your coach on to help with will increase your revenue.
How To Choose A Coach
Here are several vital factors you need to consider when selecting a coach:
You must pick a coach that specializes in a skill or field. This way, they can more suitably provide you with personalized solutions.
For example, I specialize in online marketing and personal branding.
I help financial advisors to master these particular skills so that they can assist their own clients with building a brand online starting with the discovery of Your Financial Advisor Type.
A specialist will be able to pinpoint your particular needs. A generalist may still work if you are not sure what business development needs you should be focusing on.
You are aligned
Find out what the coach offers in particular and see if their goals are similar to your business goals.
Some coaches may be veered towards more alternative methods. If you are not sure that you like these methods, you may want to steer away.
Then, if you feel like you need a little more discipline when it comes to money handling, you need someone with a drill sergeant focus.
You have a good understanding of their methods
Picking a financial coach cannot be done by simply choosing someone a little more well-known than the others. That can probably work in the sense that more reputable financial coaches may work better than others.
However, this is not always the case. It is possible to deal with popular charlatans who have made a lot of money through books that don’t even say anything.
Be familiar with the particular financial coach’s processes. Do they have methods that you are comfortable with? Do you know if you are going to learn something new from them?
You like their personality
As mentioned earlier, working with a financial coach means working with someone you can build a relationship with.
The whole process will not end after a one-off consultation. You will see each them regularly for as long as you need their help.
If you like your financial coach’s personality, you will more likely be more productive. Imagine working with someone that you do not like.
The sessions will be even more painful than they should be. Some clients actually prefer coaches who are stricter to get them on point.
They have integrity
You can always imagine a coach talking. But is your chosen coach also walking the talk?
A good financial coach is practicing what they preach. They teach you pointers that they have proven to be effective in their own lives.
If they never had to go through your particular situation, they at least help you be accountable by also being responsible.
In short, they deliver what they say they will provide and offer the promised help.
They are selective
Someone who accepts all types of clients without asking questions may be leaning more toward desperate.
You would want an effective financial coach to ask you questions. They should be interested in how they can help you. Accepting you right away may be a case of inefficiency or overconfidence.
Both of you should be actively seeking information on why the two of you are a good fit.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I become a financial coach?
Some people are money-savvy. This does not mean to say that they can simply provide professional advice for a fee.
They can only advise friends and family. But you would need to work on your degree and other qualifications if you want to be taken seriously.
What degree is best for a financial advisor?
To officially become one, you must have pursued a bachelor’s degree in a related course: finance, mathematics, business, economics, or anything related to crunching numbers.
Then, you can go through some postgraduate core training that will direct you towards becoming a financial advisor.
When you become a financial advisor, you will realize that it is a very in-demand job with high growth potential. You will better see its promise when you compare it to other types of career paths.
It also offers you a flexible working schedule, backed by high earning potential. You can say that it is a dream come true to become one, especially if your strength is in mathematics and planning.
However, you also should not ignore the fact that the job comes with a lot of stress.
Building a clientele is the initial hurdle that must be overcome before you can even reap the fruits of your labor. Then, you must be able to create a comprehensive portfolio for each client. The advice that you give cannot be streamlined for everyone; it should be personalized per client. Setting up the portfolio is just the beginning.
You must consistently work with your clients, just like a psychiatrist would with his patients. Goal setting may help you see if the partnerships are heading the right way.
Is coaching as a financial advisor a good idea
Of course, financial coaching from a financial advisor has several good points. This is why the crossover has been made possible in the first place. A financial advisor would be a good fit when it comes to strategizing money management.
While it is true that budgeting can be done by apps, apps cannot provide you with motivation unless you already have it in you.
When your coach is a financial advisor, they will not only help you stick to your budget but also assist you in going beyond your minimum expectations.
Budgeting may be easy for those with self-discipline and a growth mindset. It may not be the case if you always blame your salary and background for your failure to stick to a budget.
This looks like a job for a financial advisor with coaching skills.
Getting out of debt
This is even more complicated than just maintaining a budget. For you to get out of debt, you must add debt payments to your monthly list.
A financial advisor knows how to maneuver around a good investment. They can help you find the right strategy – and even financial tool or product if need be – to erase your debts completely.
Coaching skills can come in handy to strengthen your mind. Drowning in debt can put a lot of people in depression.
Making a decision as a family
Coaching does not have to be a one is to one relationship. It can be one financial advisor providing support for a whole family unit.
A coach can help a family work together. After all, if only one person saves money and manages the rest of their finances, the budget will still not work.
Imagine the mother trying to save by buying the most cost-efficient brands. Everything will just go down the drain if one or more of the rest of her family uses the a/c 24/7.
Everyone should work together. A knowledgeable financial advisor can foster a financially conscious environment in the household.
Planning for retirement and other big goals
A financial advisor knows what products to recommend when somebody is planning something big. If they have coaching skills, they can even cheer you on – but with substance.
A coach can be like your biggest cheerleader. A financial coach will cheer you towards your goals. If they are certified financial advisors, they can also tell you what tools and attitudes to use.
Is coaching as a financial advisor a bad idea
When the client has established wealth and is ready for the next step
A financial coach sometimes does not begin with practical advice. They set a relationship with their clients first.
A financial coach sometimes does not begin with practical advice. They set a relationship with their clients first.
There will be sessions allotted for trust-building and goal-setting. While this may be great for those who are just starting out, this may not be the case for those who are set on investing their accumulated wealth.So, coaching may be a bad idea if you are in your late 40s to early 50s.
You may be better of working with a financial advisor who is specifically working as one. This means that this advisor is keen to provide you with advice on how to grow your wealth. They will get straight to the point.
When you, as the client, need something tangible
If you want to deal with products you must invest in right now, you may want to take advantage of the financial advisor role.
What does a financial advisor do (compared to other types of financial consultants)?
Financial Coaching versus Financial Counseling
Now, another term that may come your way is “financial counseling.” This is much different from coaching. When the word “counseling” is involved, it suggests a type of crisis.
You will also encounter clients who seek your help because their finances are a disaster. Financial coaching is different because you are helping someone who is in a fairly level state.
You are just offering a means to help keep his finances healthy and continuously growing.
Financial Coaching versus Financial Education
Financial education is also different because it is merely imparting information on a theoretical basis. Therefore, it could be through a formal school or a training center.
This can be considered too far off from the more emotionally invested coaching. Financial education is all about teaching your clients using a set curriculum, as in a classroom.
Are you a new or established FA who believes a coach can help you boost your business?
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