Three words: Don’t do that. It might be the most valuable phrase we communicate to clients. Sometimes, clients want “advice” that really amounts to nothing more than validating their errant ideas. Sure, clients may disagree with or not follow every single aspect of our advice. But there is little value received if most of the advice is not acted upon.
We live in a world dedicated to “having it your way.” But, as Seth Godin writes, true advice is focused on “not what you want to hear, but what you need to hear.” Clients in the “Run-Up and “Wind-Up” phases need to stay focused on their particular goals. Sometimes, this means reminding clients that making choices that take them way off course will very likely have painful longer-term consequences. We provide perspective and context.
The Top Five Advisory Functions
1. Provide fiduciary advice that may not comport with your version of reality.
2. Keep you grounded and focused especially when you are tempted to flee.
3. Provide accountability- what you are actually doing versus what you think you are doing.
4. Provide a sensible, low-cost, evidence-based investment structure.
5. Provide ongoing review of progress and course corrections as needed.
Andy Grove, the Intel founder wrote, “Altogether too often, people substitute opinions for facts and emotions for analysis.” That’s a good description of what we run into with some clients.
Our value is to help you avoid financial mistakes, not to make you feel good about poor financial choices. Ready for a real conversation?