Archive for the 'The Right Client' Category

Profit per X


As Advisors, you face many responsibilities.  You must serve your clients, take care of your family, provide an appropriate work enviroment for your staff and most importantly – stay in business to do these things.

Many organizations in the advisory business will focus on metrics such as: gross revenue, net profits, revenue per client, hourly rate and many, many others.

For most, I would suggest that profit per client or profit per engagement is really the best measure.  This metric lets you know, “Can I afford to do this job?”

Are you serving your clients effectively by allowing some low profit per x clients be subsidized by you high profit per x clients?

What would happen if your high profit per x clients found out they were subsidizing your lower profit per x clients?

Would they be upset or happy?  What would happen to the margin pressure on those higher margin clients?  My speculation is that they would push for and likely demand lower costs as they do not want or deserve to be in the position of subsidizing that lower profit per x engagement.

So think about this as you build new relationships  – Is this engagement going to meet my profit per x hurdle and not cause my best clients to be under-served as a result?

Guide – Measure carefully the profit per x of all your relationships.

Action Item – Consider terminating those relationships that do not currently meet, or in the future are not likely to meet your profit per x hurdle.

© 2010 The Advisors Center, LLC – All Rights Reserved 

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Stop the Madness – Fire a Client


The two biggest stumbling blocks to high productivity (being in the zone) are stress and lack of confidence.

So I will ask, Do you have a client that calls and when you hear their name or see it on the caller ID, you immediately feel nausea or a pit in your gut?  If you are like most advisors, the answer is YES!

This client is likely a good source of revenue, but a high source of anxiety and energy drain.  You want to like him or her and try to please them, but each time that darn phone rings or that email comes in, you feel sick.

Consider this.  The amount of life force this relationship takes from you and your staff is equal to 7-10 great clients you enjoy.  These wonderful relationships, not to mention family and staff, are suffering as a result.

There IS a solution.  Fire them.  Let them go.  Say goodbye.

Yes, you hate to let the revenue go or admit failure, but fear not, it is for the best.

So how do you do it?  You don’t want to hurt anyone’s feeling or ruin the relationship with a referral source.  But be assured,  the client knows it too.  So here goes…

Depending on how you feel (yes, feel), this can be done by letter or over the phone. 

Here is a sample conversation:

“Joe, I realize that you have found our relationship to be less than satisfactory, which both I and my staff have sensed from your comments and behavior.  I believe that you would be better served by another advisor.  We will cooperate and aid in any manner we can in the transferring of your relationship.  I have appreciated our work together and this decision was not reached without careful consideration.  This is not something I wish to discuss further.  You will need to speak to (insert staff person’s name) to give your instructions where you would like your accounts and/or file sent.  Please hold on and I will turn you over to them now”

Push the hold button and BREATH.  You did it.  Cherish the moment and remember the feeling of stopping the madness.

Guide – The stress of one bad client is equal to the energy it takes to support 10 normal relationships.

Action item – You are a good person.  Free yourself from the oppression and fire this client.  You know who they are.  You will be better off.

© 2010 The Advisors Center, LLC – All Rights Reserved

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