Recently I posted a question on LinkedIN asking Accountants a simply Yes or No Question.
If tomorrow they could provide Financial Planning to their clients would they?
The results were fascinating.
You can check out some on the results on my LinkedIN page here (even say hello and connect).
Accountants know that they are unable to provide all the Financial Planning services to their clients due to licensing and legal requirements.
But what if there was a way they could provide Financial Planning.
What would hold them back? What would stop them? Why wouldn’t they?
Let me share with you a story.
A Familiar Story
Bill was a partner in a successful Accounting firm. He and his two other partners, Andrew and Stefanie, were in their 40’s and had recently transitioned their firm 100% into the cloud and embraced offshoring to build their team and provide efficiencies and increase productivity.
For years, Bill, being quite entrepreneurial, had wanted to deliver more services to his clients.
The partners had discussed providing Financial Planning to their clients.
Over the years they had tried different approaches.
They tried a straight out referral approach with a Financial Planner Andrew knew from University. It worked for a while, but when the Accounting firm had lodgement deadlines (almost all the time) the partners didn’t have the time to refer clients and the relationship just stopped.
They had numerous coffees and meetings with other Financial Planners. Some felt like used car sales people, others didn’t return emails or phone calls and one even told them he would refer all of his clients to the Accounting firm for tax work (but never did).
With the changes to the Self Managed Super Fund (SMSF) legislation, they explored the option of a limited license to provide advice to their SMSF clients.
But, when they saw the work they needed to do, again, it was put into the ‘future projects’ pile.
Eventually, Bill and the other partners decided it was all too hard.
They didn’t really know what they could and couldn’t say to clients about Financial Planning.
It felt like offering Financial Planning was too hard and Bill started to question the value of Financial Planning – was it all sales and commission driven product sales like he read about in the newspapers?
Keep it simple
It didn’t need to be this way.
Financial Planning can be a valuable service delivered to your clients in a professional and engaging way without it feeling like it is just product selling and putting the interests of the client second.
Clients want their Accountant to provide advice on strategies to help them solve their problems like:
- How and when can I retire
- How can I protect my business partners and family if something happens to me and/li>
- How do I create wealth for my kids outside of my business/li>
By having a Financial Planner sit with the Accountant in each and every meeting with a client (or at least be available to them when needed) Financial Planning can be delivered by an Accountant to their clients.
The convenience of having the Financial Planner in the meetings means the Accountant doesn’t have to worry about saying the wrong thing to the client.
The client gets a huge amount of value and the Accountant looks great by adding value to the relationship.
You can do it!
As an Accounting Partner in Public Practice, your time is valuable.
Financial Planning can seem like its too hard, too salesy and not something you want to get involved with.
But it doesn’t need to be this way.
Having a Financial Planning you know and trust in your office working on solving problems for your clients in a strategic way helps you have the discussions with the client they want you to have as their trusted adviser.
What’s stopping you?
Having a Financial Planner in your office is the easiest way to help you provide the services your clients want.
If you want to know how, reach out and we can have a chat about creating a successful and profitable Financial Planning business for you.