Bringing Home the Lombardi Trophy… To Your Practice!

The following is a guest blog post from Brian Briggs, Investment Analyst for the Investment Case and Analysis Team  – a value added service from SEI’s Practice Management Solutions.

As the New England Patriots and New York Giants face off this Sunday for Super Bowl XLVI, the world will be watching to see which of these two high-powered offenses will take home the coveted Vince Lombardi Trophy.

If you think about it, there’s actually a significant amount of overlap between running a successful football team and a successful advisory firm:

1. Carrying out the fundamentals. Execution and timing are key to any successful football team, and the same goes for a successful practice. For example, establishing an effective marketing calendar for the year should be a standard practice for any firm looking to grow.

2. Finding ways to improve the roster. Look around the league…every GM seeks to enhance his team through free agency, the NFL draft and waiver wire throughout the season. Constantly evaluating your client base and seeking out new clients is a great way to set you apart from the competition.

3. Staying focused on the goal. Despite injuries, difficulty of schedule and even quarterback controversies (TEBOW TIME!), the goal of every team leading into the season is making the playoffs and ultimately winning the Super Bowl. Volatility in the market may force clients to lose sight of their goals through media hype, but a great coach knows how to keep his team (client base) settled and focused during trying times. Take control of your team!

Last-minute Tips for Success

In the final days leading up to the big game, coaches will to game plan for the opponent, but will keep the overall theme that got them to the big game in place. Here are “last minute” tips you can use when having a meeting with a prospective client or a monthly/quarterly meeting with an existing client:

• Do your homework – understanding the interest and goals of a prospective client is often achieved in the initial meeting; however, if there is an opportunity to learn more about the client from the referral (i.e. points of pain), the transition from “prospect” to “client” will be much more seamless. Remember, your goal is to make a good first impression and to show your value early on.

• Expect the unexpected – every play during the game presents an opportunity to change the momentum of the game, and so does every point of contact with your clients. Segmenting your client base will allow you to manage your business more effectively when the unexpected (or expected, in some cases) happens. For example, being proactive in providing tax-management tips to your high-net-worth investors throughout the year will have them fully informed when the “Bush tax cuts” expire at the end of 2012.

Ok…since my beloved Carolina Panthers let me down this season (spare me the jokes), I’ll jump on the “Terrific Tom” bandwagon for one game and predict a score of 28-14 in favor of the Patriots.  Also, read the following article from Investment News to see what the game results could mean for the stock market this year.

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John Anderson

John Anderson

John Anderson is the creator and lead author of Practically Speaking blog and Managing Director of Practice Management Solutions for the SEI Advisor Network.

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