I Don't Believe in Financial Planning

Yes, you heard me, I don’t believe in financial planning. I don’t like the term, I think it confuses consumers and is misunderstood. I don’t believe in a financial plan either. Most people who do financial planning would agree, “I only believe in comprehensive, quality financial planning". Now that means something.


What is comprehensive financial planning? Wealthy people want a comprehensive strategy, a quality solution and a holistic approach to their wealth and their legacy. Most people look at financial planning negatively, meaning the plan will solve their problems and give them solutions to their problems. This is old school thinking and language. Financial advisors for years approach it as a solution to their problem and sell some insurance. Old school. The new school of thinking is planning to help you reach your goals for your future covering off all 7 areas of your master plan, to give you the highest probability of success in reaching your goals. One advisory team I was working with recently told me they spend up to 40 hours per wealthy family to do their comprehensive planning, coordinating with other professionals such as accountants and lawyers.

The Seven Areas

Let’s say your goal was to retire. Do you just want the numbers to tell you how much you need? Or do you need to look at all seven areas to accomplish your goal? It is like building a house only with an architect. The architect is also the framer, carpenter, plumber, and electrician. Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? To help me accomplish my retirement goals, I will need to look at tax, estate, investment, risk, insurance, debt, and cash flow. All seven areas factor in designing a comprehensive and quality financial plan. So the question to ask is “ what is the probability of success in reaching your goals with your current planning? Do you think the probability would be higher or lower if you factor in all seven areas? Would you like to know?

Stress Testing

Would you like us to stress test your current plan in all seven areas? This is where the engineering mind comes in. It is also where human behavior comes in. Critical areas of maintaining your master plans for people. This is where the advisor clearly comes in, by sticking to the master plan and managing emotions to get there. Do you stress test your plans? If you don’t some other advisor will. This is one of the critical paths to acquire new ideal clients. Clients don’t know if they even have a comprehensive plan, covering all seven areas. They have never stress tested their plans for their future and don’t know the probability of success in reaching their goals. Sounds like you built the house with the architect alone, doesn’t it.

End Goal

As a financial advisor for over 20 years, I realized I could only manage about 50 to 100 comprehensive financial and investment planning relationships. Now as a practice management coach and consultant, I can help 5000 or more people get a comprehensive, or quality financial and investment plan, covering all seven areas, by coaching advisors. I don’t do the work, you do. I help advisors with the conversations to meet, acquire and create an ideal client experience. Now I can help 5000-10,000 families reach their goals and to be better prepared for their future. This helps advisors reach their goals, and helps the local economy to be stronger. That is my goal. What is your goal? Acquire more ideal clients? Create a deeper ideal client experience? Let me start by asking you one question. What is the probability of success in reaching your business goals with your current business plan? Does it cover all areas of practice management?

Related: Are You in the Business of Advice as a Financial Advisor?