How To Create A Client-Experience Calendar
October 12, 2015
by Rob Pascual
Carlson Capital's Black Diamond Arbitrage fund is up 5.77% for the first eight months of the year, including a 1.72% return for August. Last year, the fund returned 2.39% for the whole year. Q3 2021 hedge fund letters, conferences and more The fund consists of merger arbitrage mainly consisting of signed or "rate of return" Read More
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You are well on your way to growing your advisory practice. As a business owner, you have established who you are going to service by identifying your client profiles; what their financial needs are by matching your services to each client profile; and what your advisory firm will look like by outlining and adopting high-quality services that create a far better client experience.
But how are you going to consistently meet those client needs? Many of the most successful financial advisory firms have one thing in common: They offer an extraordinary client experience. That is a direct result of relentless attention to detail and design. It happens on a consistent basis when your firm has systematized almost every aspect of its operation.
You have established and built your service models, and you understand that each service should be exactly the same for every client in that model and that it should be delivered to clients in the exact same way. This creates consistency of client experience and provides superior client service every time. In addition, it minimizes mistakes and creates cost-efficient processes for each service. Successful firms refrain from doing things one way for one client and another way for a different client. Although different clients may need different mixes of services, each service is essentially delivered in the same way. For example, while two clients may receive different asset allocations and tax strategies, each allocation and strategy will be determined using the same process, and they will be delivered to both clients in the same way.
I have found that the best way to create a consistent high-quality client experience is to develop a client-experience calendar. Simply put, this calendar outlines what a client can expect from your team at the beginning of the relationship and throughout the year. It sets the expectation for the service a client will experience with your firm. In addition, it expresses the value your team brings to the relationship and what makes your service different from other firms.
Also, a great client experience is a competitive advantage.
Here are the steps to building your client-experience calendar:
Step 1: Outline your initial process and build relationship expectations
The first step in creating your client experience calendar is to identify your first several meetings with the prospect/client. After you have identified those, you can put together a list of topics covered within each meeting. For example, the first meeting is generally a discovery meeting. During that meeting, will you identify their life goals and evaluate ways your firm can add value to their situation? Will you create a total client profile? Or, will you answer questions about your services and your firm? What other meetings will you establish? Will you have financial planning and investment planning meetings? Will you have a 45-day or 60-day follow-up meeting? Decide on your initial meetings, then determine how the meetings will be structured and what specifically will be addressed in each meeting.