This past week has been a big one in the Mackrill household. Our youngest kids bid farewell to their summer camp friends (until next year), and my wife and I took our oldest on the first of many college tours.

Stepping onto a college campus again felt like a mixture of familiar territory and uncharted waters. I’m excited to see which schools he’s drawn to and where he decides to go. If you’ve recently sent a kid or two off to college, feel free to share tips or anything you found helpful in reply to this email.

As we start the drive back home to Charleston, here is what I’ve been thinking about work-wise over the last few days:

  1. Harnessing the Power of Tech & Automation – Rich Walker 🎧
  2. You’re Invited: Forging the Future of Financial Advice 📍
  3. The Fractional Future of Wealth Management Workshop Series Part 2 🖥
  4. The Power of Purpose 👨🏼‍🍳
  5. The End of the In-Office Era 🏢
  6. A Meme Salutation ⛱

On the Pod

Harnessing the Power of Technology and Automation with Rich Walker

In this episode of Connected, Kyle is joined by Rich Walker, Founder and CEO of Quik!. They dive into a conversation about technology, standardized data collection challenges, and the importance of automation for financial advisors. Rich provides a fresh perspective on how automation can help advisors focus on what is most important – spending time with their clients.

The episode is available now on your favorite podcast platform. While there, please don’t forget to Download, Like, and Subscribe.

You’re Invited: Forging the Future of Wealth Management, August 16, Atlanta

Join us for an in-person event this August. This event is designed specifically for RIAs, where we will walk through unlocking tangible success for your clients, business, and professional journey.

Connect with other advisors and industry leaders while you grab a pint and hear from Tim Maurer, Daniel Crosby, Ph.D., and myself on the key issues rapidly shaping wealth management’s future.

Event Details:

When: Wednesday, August 16, 2023 at 4:30 pm EST

Where: Bold Monk Brewing, 1737 Ellsworth Industrial Blvd NW Suite D-1 Atlanta, GA 30318

Spots are already filling up quickly, so sign up ASAP. Save your seat here.

The Fractional Future of Wealth Management LIVE Workshop Part 2

Industry experts Diana Cabrices, Founder & Fractional Chief Evangelist at Diana Cabrices Consulting, and Kyle Van Pelt, CEO at Milemarker, will be joining me as we talk through tangible strategies to scale your business through leveraging experts in operations, content creation and brand development.

We’ve designed this workshop to be practical and provide tangible takeaways for you and your firm.

Workshop Details:

When: Wednesday, July 26, 2023 at 1:00 pm EST

Where: Zoom Webinar

To register for the workshop, please click here.

Every Second Counts: The Power of Purpose & the Gift of Serving Clients

:SPOILER ALERT: While we’ve been up in Wisconsin taking our oldest son on college visits, we’ve passed some time introducing him to FX’s hit show The Bear.

If you’ve watched the show, you’ll get the full benefit of this article. If not, I’ll try to navigate this without spoiling too much for you, but if you’re worried, skip down to the next header and then go watch season 2.

:READ ON:

I’m not sure what your relationship is with your alarm clock.

Mine is the alarm app on my iPhone.

It’s kind of a mess. Littered with tons of random times that I set or where I asked Siri to set an alarm for 2 pm.

Somehow our alarm clock tells a really interesting and revealing story.

My Actual Alarm Clock App

In Episode 7 of FX’s The Bear, Richie gets our full attention. You glimpse his backstory, full of bad luck and poor decisions. You walk with him to see how Carmy’s introduction to another restaurant and chef friend impacts Richie to help him reach his full potential.

His alarm clock and his obvious desire to hit snooze dwindles as he connects his newfound respect for his industry and himself to his ultimate purpose in life.

Here’s the moment it all clicks:

 

From going through the motions and struggling to get out of bed each day, to waking up energized before the alarm can even go off, Richie’s entire countenance transforms (don’t worry, he doesn’t lose his edge, even while he belts out his daughter’s favorite music on the drive home).

Here’s the thing. We’ve all had our share of bad breaks and bad choices. Plenty of people have come through these past three years and arrived at this moment beat down, exhausted, and feeling like nothing might go their way again.

If you can’t relate, you likely have people on your team that can connect with Richie’s un-self-actualized version of existence. The show resonates so well because you get to see HOW he transforms. What’s the secret of moving from lackluster existing to vibrant life?

Making clients feel seen and known.

Specifically, Richie fully embraces the joy of crafting client experiences that are mind-blowing. To get it right, he learns how to totally commit to understanding every detail, knowing his product exactly and flawless execution.

It was impossible not to see the implications for wealth management.

If you, or your valued team members, are struggling to see the importance of doing the little things – keeping clean data in your CRM is to your RIA as polishing forks is to a 5-star restaurant – it might be time to step back and put in the reps at the bottom of the ladder. Remember why all the tiny details matter by putting in the time doing those tiny details for yourself and see what you discover.

Of course, you don’t have to find purpose by doing manually data entry. Here are some other actions you can take to find your purpose:

Reflection and self-assessment: Ask yourself questions like; What do my clients get the most excited about? What are the reactions I want them to have when we serve them well? How can I consistently exceed expectations?

Set meaningful goals that center client experience: Setting specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals. You know that “relevant” part? Add in this question every time you make a goal: How does this impact client joy?

Be different: You don’t have to be extravagant or elaborate. Just strive for different. The best way to discover different is to do some different stuff yourself. Attend an event you’ve never gone to before. Talk to new people. Take on a new project. You never know where joy might be found.

P.S. Obviously, finding and fulfilling your purpose isn’t always going to be found through client experience. It’s a personal and ongoing quest. So, sit back, relax and keep setting your alarm.

Highways and Byways. Quick Takes on Industry News & Relevant Content.

The End of the In-Office Era

I came across this article about Schwab closing 5 offices in major cities and downsizing in quite a few others. Schwab, like many other businesses in industries across the board, turned to remote work during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. As it turned out, it took a little more than 15 days to slow the spread. Before we knew it, remote work became the new normal. We can thank technology (looking at you Zoom) for making this possible.

In the last year or so, as the most severe threat of COVID has diminished for people without pre-existing conditions, many offices ~attempted~ to return to in-office or hybrid models. Companies were met with quite a bit of resistance from employees. Most people seemed to enjoy the autonomy and flexibility of working remotely, and I can’t say I blame them (although I may be a little biased since I’ve been routinely working from home since 2008).

Although taking the leap and permanently adopting a remote-first mindset for your employees may seem scary, however, it’s hard for employees to imagine commuting five days a week again. Here’s what a remote-friendly workforce can mean for you and your firm:

Better access to talent: Additionally, remote work erases geographical barriers, enabling your firm to tap into a vast pool of talent from around the world, including people who need work-from-home accommodations that may have precluded them from ever even applying in the first place.

Save on your bottom line: Just like Schwab, firms that embrace a remote working model can cut expenses related to rent, utilities, and office supplies.

Reduced turnover: This one is pretty simple. The happier your employees are, the more likely they are to stay. By providing flexibility, your firm can retain your valuable talent and reduce turnover rates.

To be frank, employees are expecting the flexibility of remote work. By embracing it, you demonstrate your firm’s ability to adapt to changing workforce dynamics and attract top talent.

Schwab to shutter five corporate offices in favor of remote work

Schwab has cited low in-person attendance and a need to ‘efficiently use resources’ as reasons for reducing its real estate footprint.

How are you navigating office work and tying it all to your purpose? One of my favorite things about writing this newsletter is hearing from you. I’m not asking this rhetorically. I’d love to hear from you.

That’s all for this week!

Have a great weekend.

@sunday.scaries on IG