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When Does an Advisory Practice Become a Business?

Having worked with hundreds of advisors since we first launched Advisory Services Network, we’ve developed an eye for that important inflection point when an advisory practice starts to become an advisory business.

“What’s the difference?” you might be wondering.

To put it simply, the biggest difference is that the advisor has recognized the need to shift his or her time from handling the daily tasks of running a firm to the higher-level strategic planning needed to grow that firm into something much more. It is a business mindset focused on growth which so many advisors do an excellent job of encouraging in their clients, but for some reason don’t always bring to their own efforts. It is also a mindset that recognizes the need to access services and expertise that will be additive to the advisor’s efforts, particularly in the time they give back to the advisor to focus on growth, planning, and implementation.

But arriving at that recognition is just the first step. To spur real change, advisors need to find an answer to that all important next question: “How?”

At ASN, we’ve spent years answering just that question, and we understand that the answer may vary dramatically from one advisor to another. That’s why working with a true partner that takes the time to understand your ideas, vision, accomplishments, and goals can make all the difference.

Just as there is no one-size-fits-all approach for guiding a client towards retirement, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to building a thriving independent advisory practice. Rather, there are the building blocks every advisor undoubtedly needs, such as IT infrastructure, compliance, record-keeping, marketing, branding, and the dozens of other aspects behind a successful firm. With ASN, an advisor will work closely with a team dedicated to finding the right levels and combinations of all those building blocks, driving success not only in the short-term but in the longer-term as well when it comes to questions around scalability, expansion, and, eventually, succession planning.

Just as in all other facets of life, the thinking behind an advisory business may also evolve and change over time. That is why at ASN, our engagement never stops, and it takes many forms, including a quarterly self-assessment we assist advisors administer to help ensure that the right resources are being put behind the right priorities.

If the need to reallocate that most precious resource – time – is the first indication of an advisor hitting a key inflection point, then a commitment to self-reflection is a strong signal that they are now, in fact, well on their way to making their business not just a reality, but a success.

If you’re an advisor who is ready to level up from managing a practice to running a business, reach out. We have much to discuss.