Slideshow 5 tips from top advisers to promote business growth

  • April 21 2015, 1:26am EDT


Want to be the best in the business? Executives from the financial advisory space shared their insight with Steve Sanduski, founder of, during a podcast series. Here are five tips they offered to help promote growth:

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1) Make yourself less valuable to your business

It sounds counterintuitive, but the less valuable you are to your business, the more valuable your business is, says United Capital CEO Joe Duran. If the business relies too much on you, you have no business. You have a self-employed job.

There are three ways to make your business less reliant on you, Duran says.
•t“Get your ego out of the way.” Yes, the business needs your entrepreneurial spark and drive to get off the ground, but once it's in flight, it's time to pull back and let others shine.
•t “Push the decision-making down the organization.” Do this by giving others the chance to prove they can make decisions as good, or better, than you.
•t“Increase the degrees of separation between you and your average clients.” The less clients interact with you, the more solid your business becomes.

There is one caveat, says Mark Moses, founder of CEO Coaching International. As the leader of the company, you have to own and nurture the company's three to five most important relationships.

How to implement: Start small by empowering a team member to be responsible for one aspect of your business that you've historically handled. Build from there.

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2) Be a voracious user of technology

The demands on an executive at a fast-growing company are huge and the only way to manage them both personally and professionally is to leverage technology.

Let’s not forget robo technology, which is dramatically enhancing the front-end client experience and raising consumer expectations on what an advisor should offer. You don't need to offer automated investment management services, of course, but you should definitely consider incorporating onboarding and account aggregation technology.

How to implement: Re-evaluate your overall use of technology, hire a consultant if necessary, and make a point of looking into Evernote and Slack.

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3) Be willing to rip up your playbook

Without a doubt, top achievers embrace change — they thrive on it and they use it as a strategic tool to grow. Underachievers “get too comfortable and are not willing to innovate, not willing to challenge the status quo because it's working OK,” says Mariner Wealth CEO Marty Bicknell.

Today's leaders willingly step out of their comfort zone into the realm of the unknown. They willingly change on a dime if the environment changes. They understand change is a necessity to stay vibrant and relevant.

How to implement: Do something that scares you: Cold call the biggest prospect in your town, or ask your top five clients for a referral. The more often you do things that scare you, the more willing you'll be to disrupt your business when the environment necessitates it.

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4) Have a compelling recruiting message

Competition for people is tough. Your business needs a compelling reason why top talent should flock to your company and not somebody else's. That reason usually revolves around two things — mission and culture.

Do you have a clearly articulated mission that appeals to people's core desire to contribute to society? Have you created a culture of high achievement wrapped in esprit de corps that attracts people looking to learn from and grow with other top achievers?

Mission and culture may sound like touch-feely things that don't lead directly to new sales. But highly engaged staff members who are enthusiastic about what the company does, believe in what it stands for and enjoy working with their peers will go the extra mile for clients and prospects. And that in turn will result in more business.

How to implement: Take the time to create a mission for your firm. Go beyond a statement on the wall to create something that inspires your team to perform at their best.

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5) Don't do it for the money

These leaders all have a driving purpose that keeps them pushing the limit long after they've reached the "set for life" level.

Moses says his work “is something I get to do, not something I have to do.” He and these other executives do what they do because they believe in making lives better. They're generous with their time, their ideas and their desire to leave the world a little better than when they arrived.

Sure, they're all making bank — but if it was all about the money they would have retired years ago.

How to implement: Think long and hard about why you do what you do. Uncover a fulfilling purpose that can become infectious in your organization — and if you can't find this purpose, get out of the business and do something different.

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