Independent Financial Services professionals are used to being jack-of-all-trades. Obviously though, it is not possible to excel at everything. It can make good business sense to use professionals to help build your practice.

Financial professionals looking to grow their practices will often seek out the assistance of a practice development consultant. There are at least three general areas where practice development Consultants can help build a more profitable business.

The first is in software products and other tools that can help organize and streamline a firm’s data, reporting and other information. An examples of software that are commonly available are customer management programs to keep track of information about each client. These CRMs, as they are known, focus both on maintaining existing client relationships and on reaching out to new clients.

Another potential area of assistance relates to product. Independent financial professionals obviously can represent offerings from literally hundreds of different firms. It can be next-to-impossible to know what are newly available products and how certain strategies can be developed using products from different companies.

A practice Management Consultant can help develop product strategies and group various products various products into holistic Solutions.

A third area that some consultants specialize in is simply business management. They provide guidance on such things as HR, accounting and even best practices for office setup.

Of course, nothing happens until someone makes a sale so perhaps the greatest value a practice Management Consultant can bring is providing insight and strategies to encourage additional sales for your practice.  Practice development consultants that specializes in marketing strategy are able to bring to the table advanced, proven and even cutting-edge methodologies for reaching out to and nurturing potential customer relationships.

An ever-more important area of prospect outreach is digital presence. Along, with that is branding. One of the most difficult things for the independent professional to compete with is the branding and digital sophistication of the major players. A captive professional never needs to think about branding nor digital presence.

On the other hand, this provides an opportunity for the independent financial professional because he or she may be able enhance their personal brand and digital presence beyond that of which the typical captive professional would be able to do. 

Southfield Michigan practice development consultant Edward Petersmarck explained; “One thing we like to do with our clients is create a branding package that makes them look as large and professional as any major professional. But that is just the beginning.  The independent IS the brand. The majors don’t want to focus on the individual – but that is exactly what we are able to do all day long and it works.”

Petersmarck continues;  “I like to say we come alongside of our clients to encourage them to do the things they know they need to do. As well suggest things they had no idea they could ever hope accomplish as an independent.”

Practice development consultants can be well worth the time to connect with as often they may significantly increase business for the independent financial professional that works with them.


By: Ken Dolan – Financial Industry Researcher