Ari Weisbard is Managing Partner of Values Added Financial, an independent RIA based out of Washington that oversees $143 million in assets under management for 75 client households. Ari and his partner Zach distinguish themselves by not only implementing fee minimums to ensure profitable service for clients, but also by deliberately adjusting their fees and minimums to control and accelerate their business growth according to their firm's advisor capacity—and to allow for a sustainable work-life balance.
Listen in as Ari shares how he and his partner have implemented and adjusted minimum fees for new clients, as well as why they have positioned their firm as one that serves clients with progressive values. We also discuss how Ari has overcome fear and imposter syndrome, why he feels more fulfilled as an advisor than he did as a lawyer, and how he is focusing on the human aspect of financial planning and connecting with clients beyond economics.
For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/330
Charesse Spiller is the Founder and Principal Consultant for Level Best, an operations and process strategy consulting firm based out of Houston that helps advisory firms evaluate and improve their operations and processes by focusing on three pillars: streamlining, automation, and delegation. Charesse has established a distinctive consulting firm that sets itself apart by not only educating financial advisors on how to systematize and automate their processes, but also serves as an outsourced provider that builds and implements systems on behalf of clients.
Listen in as Charesse discusses her approach to evaluating an advisory firm’s technology, processes, and systems, why a lack of clear accountability for team members as the firm grows is often the real blocking point for larger RIAs seeking to scale, and why she created her educational resource and community to educate operations professionals on how they can optimize their systems and processes on an ongoing basis. We also discuss why she hired a financial coach to avoid burnout and improve her leadership skills, what it was like scaling a service firm and transitioning from employee to founder, and how she leveraged local mentoring programs, read business books, and formed two Mastermind groups to develop her own skills as she and her business grew.
For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/329
Thomas West is a Senior Partner for Signature Estate & Investment Advisors, an independent RIA based out of Los Angeles that oversees nearly $16 billion in assets under management, with $570 million of those assets from 250 households being managed by Thomas’ practice. Thomas stands out for his innovative approach to supporting seniors who are searching for suitable housing and healthcare options while facing medical and cognitive challenges in their later years and has developed a unique offering called the Lifecare Affordability Plan, which has been tremendously successful in providing added value to his clients and their elderly parents.
Listen in as Thomas shares how he realized that "one-legger" senior couples, where one spouse is healthy and the other is not, face unique challenges in making healthcare decisions with significant financial ramifications and how this led him to create the Lifecare Affordability Plan to provide guidance to senior couples dealing with medical and cognitive issues. We also discuss why over 90% of the assets managed by his firm are held on a non-discretionary basis (which has increased client communication and portfolio customization), why his firm doesn't charge more for trading assets on a discretionary basis and charges less for clients who allow them to manage with discretion, and how his definition of success has shifted from focusing on production to the impact of his elder planning work, which in turn motivates him to work harder.
For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/328
Marc Horner is the Founder of Fairhaven Wealth Management, an independent RIA based out of Illinois that oversees more than $1 billion in assets under management for 450 client households. Marc has been able to differentiate his firm by drawing upon his years of wirehouse experience to create a distinctly un-wirehouse brand that leverages parody commercials as a way to distinguish his firm's culture from prospective clients.
Listen in as we discuss how Marc developed his unique marketing strategy of writing parody commercials, how he balances the serious nature of financial advising with the not-so-serious way he markets his firm, and how he became comfortable taking such a non-traditional approach to marketing. We also talk about why he decided to go independent after 14 years in the wirehouse world, how he grew his firm from $80 million in AUM to over $1 billion in under 8 years, and how he splits the growth of his team into one-third through organic hiring, one-third through recruiting, and one-third through acquisitions.
For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/327