Do Clients Value their Advisor Relationships?

A recent post1 to insurancenewsnet.com references a recent (2016) survey by Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company2 indicating that –

“For many consumers, the relationship with their financial advisor appears to lack a deep understanding of their complete financial picture, tailored attention and a long-term commitment.”

Specifically, only 43% believed their advisor had a long-term commitment to them and 41% believed they received “tailored attention” to their needs.

Another Carl Richard’s (in his simple yet insightful) illustration captures an important relative balance that successful advisors need to keep in mind –

The advisory investment of time and effort in building relationship (personal human) capital is as important (if not more than as a balance to) as their financial capital.

A few other key points from the survey are that –

The respondent’s perception of “The American Dream” meant having a happy family life (59%) and financially security (58%).

  • It would appear that having a relationship with an advisor who really understands them on a personal basis (think family dynamics) and as well, pays attention to their emotional perception of how secure they are financially would go a long way to helping deepen the perception of a strong relationship.


Nearly 7 in 10 Americans do not have a financial advisor who offers comprehensive lifetime financial planning.

  • Having an integrated approach that includes long-term financial plans and projections, estate planning, and in particular, ensuring that the client’s emotional alignment with the plan is key to a stronger, more resilient, relationship.

82% of those who have a financial plan believe it should be reviewed with them at least every six months (preferences were 36% and 27% for once per month or more and once a quarter respectively).

  • Establishing a client communication protocol adapted to their specific emotional profile is another important element of effective client relationship management.

MarketPsych Insight’s objective is to help equip advisors with better ideas and tools to improve their skills at developing and maintaining more substantial relationships with their clients.

“Our success depends on your success in each client you serve.”

Other Resources

You may wish to check out a recently released book from Dan Dennett, a cognitive scientist. The book is a collection of 77 short essays on different “thinking tools”.
Intuition Pumps And Other Tools for Thinking by Daniel C. Dennett (hyperlink is to the Amazon listing)

--Mark the advisor

  1. Clients to Advisors: Let’s Work on Our Relationship by Cyril Tuohy https://insurancenewsnet.com/innarticle/how-close-the-advisor-client-bond-not-close-enough

  2. 2016 Planning & Progress Study: Closing the Gap – a survey conducted by Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company https://www.northwesternmutual.com/about-us/studies/planning-and-progress-study-2016

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