Developing Growth Plans for 2015

December 9, 2014

by Beverly Flaxington

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Beverly Flaxington is a practice management consultant. She answers questions from advisors facing human resource issues. To submit yours, email us here.

Advisor Perspectives welcomes guest contributions. The views presented here do not necessarily represent those of Advisor Perspectives.

Dear Bev,

Every year we talk about formalizing our client referral process, increasing our market presence and setting other growth-related goals. But we start January 1 without real plans in place. What can we do this December to ensure we are successful with our resolutions?

Leslie P.
Dear Leslie,

Your question reminds me of the definition of insanity; doing the same thing but expecting a different result. You are right to commit to breaking this trend. December is a great time to plan for the new year. While it can be a busy month, clients might be less available because of the holidays so you may not have as many external meetings. You should schedule a time on the company calendar when everyone who you want to be involved in this planning is available. I suggest allocating 2-2.5 hours for this.

Before you meet, assign “homework.” Ask everyone on the team to develop a plan that captures where they are now and where they want to be next year. Ask them to uncover their obstacles to success and note the things they will do to overcome these obstacles.

During the meeting, set an overall desired outcome for the advisory firm and for each individual present. Share the thinking behind why these goals are necessary and make sure everyone agrees on the goals that are established.

Develop specifics plans for each avenue you are approaching: New business/prospects, client referrals, center-of-Influence referrals, direct marketing, etc.  Keep these plans as distinct as you can so that you can see and measure success.

Lastly, be sure to put everything you agree on into writing and circulate this written document to the firm. You will want to track how you are doing each quarter of 2015. Record the who, what, when, budget and timelines needed.

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