Financial Planning Success through Communication

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This blog details the thoughts of financial advisor Beau Williams on why communication is so important in helping him plan for clients’ future financial success. He has come a long way to get to where he is now, and he has many lessons to share from that journey.

Who is Beau Williams?

Beau Williams is a financial advisor in Shreveport at JPJ Investments. He graduated from Northwestern State University with a degree in Business Administration and the inspiration from a finance professor to one day enter into the financial planning industry..

Why Financial Advising?

Beau got into financial advising because he always wanted to do something that was “less transactional and more relationship oriented.” He had always read that it was one of the most rewarding careers, even though he said it could be stressful when clients were upset about losing money and the performance of the economy. He states, “Overall, you are helping people build wealth, and hopefully plan for a successful, happy retirement.”

Retirement

How Vital is Communication?

When asked this, there was no doubt in Beau’s mind. He says, “It is the most important thing there is. You can be Stephen Hawking, but if you can’t relay your message to clients, it does you no good.” Performance was important in his mind, but it could not compare with the importance of being able to engage with the client.

How does Communication Vary?

Communication varies from client to client, according to Beau. Some clients do not care much at all to communicate, but they simply trust him. “Ethically and professionally, you have to say thank you for your trust, but let me go over these compliance issues and the fees.” He doesn’t feel like he is doing his job, if he doesn’t try to explain things to clients.

Which Type of Communication is Most Important?

There are four main types of communication. They are listening, reading, writing, and speaking. Beau believes that listening is the most important type of communication in financial advising by far because you need to be able to understand the person in order to give advice and recommendations. He says that speaking is the second most important type of communication because you have to be able to give the recommendations in a way the client can understand. However, it is the client’s money at the end of the day. Beau says, “If they want to take all of it and buy a penny stock, then you better document the fire out of it. You have to do what the client wants though.”

What Role does Writing Play?

Writing does not play a major role for Beau in his day to day activities of financial advising. He makes sure to note that one should not completely disregard writing skills because you do not want to look bad on things like a mail out. For writing in emails, it is also important to know the basics of writing and to make sure to double check before sending them out.

What Role does Reading Play?

Reading plays an important part in the financial advising industry. Beau reads daily to find out information about the industry or compliance measures. He is required to continuously study and read in order to keep up to date on continuing education courses for his different licenses.

How does the Future Look?

The industry is constantly changing with new investment strategies and regulations. A financial advisor must be able stay up to date through communication with other professionals as well as communicating important information to clients. Communication is key to future success in financial planning.

Written by: Hunter Greene

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