All posts tagged Prospecting

  • Partners in Prospecting

    June 25, 2020

    Intergenerational Wealth Transfer Part II : The Kids Are Alright

    Intergenerational Wealth Transfer

    In our last blog post We Are Family, we discussed three specific ways Advisors could get to know their clients’ children. After publishing that post, we had some requests to expand this topic to include the key documents clients need to obtain for estate purposes. When it comes to Estate Planning, most Advisors say that their clients’ most common concern is ensuring their families are taken care of upon their death.

    As an Advisor, you don’t have to be an estate planning expert, but as a holistic Advisor, you can help your clients assess whether an estate plan crafted by an attorney lines up with their financial goals.

    Having the Estate Planning Conversation

    Take the opportunity, when you have your client on the phone or are conducting their review, to broach the topic by stating, “Based on your financial plan, it is possible that you’ll have substantial assets when you pass away. What would you like to see happen with this money and property? Do you have concerns?” As people generally love to talk about their families, this could be an opportune time to clarify and address their fears.

    From there, you can delve deeper, asking questions such as, “Have you thought about the legacy you will leave your children, grandchildren, or community? What values and beliefs have you developed during your life that you’d like your family to embrace when you’re gone?” Keep in mind that this could be the first time the client has approached estate planning as something other than the tax-efficient transfer of money and property. They may appreciate your effort to refocus the conversation on guiding and inspiring the next generation to use their inherited wealth wisely.

    At this critical time in your conversation you can find out if your client has a lawyer. Your clients’ lives may be too complicated (divorce, blended families, etc.) for purchasing an “out of the box” last will and testament. Preparing a will requires a lawyer and if the client doesn’t have one, you should consider having a few lawyers with whom you’ve developed relationships and feel comfortable recommending.

    A good place to begin is Revenue Canada’s Estate Planning Checklist. This jargon free document is an excellent way to introduce estate planning concepts to your client.

    Now let’s move onto the most important documents required when estate planning. It is by no means an exhaustive list, nor is this comprehensive advice. Financial Advisors should work closely with the client’s counsel to ensure appropriate legal protections are afforded to clients based on all of their wishes: financial and otherwise. However, simple or complex your client’s plan is, it is likely that these three items below will form the basis of the plan.

    1. Last Will and Testament

    The last Will and Testament is the keystone of any estate plan. Properly executed, it allows for the orderly distribution of the deceased’s assets. This entails appointing an executor. Choosing an executor is an important decision, as he or she will manage any challenges against the will through the provincial probate process and will ensure probate fees are covered. (Note: Not all property is subject to probate. Where the property has a designated beneficiary built-in, such as life insurance death benefits and RRSPs, they are not subject to probate). In many circumstances, particularly those involving multiple properties or the ownership of a business, it may be a good idea for your client to tell the concerned parties of his or her plans. If one heir is more suited by temperament and inclination to assume control of the business, for example, your client may wish to consider “estate equalization’ and allocate investment proceeds or life insurance benefits accordingly.

    Without a valid will, you are considered to have died intestate. When that happens in Canada, the province you lived in decides how your assets are distributed, without regard to your wishes. Following the laws of intestacy, the province typically distributes the first $50,000 of value to a surviving spouse, then divides up the rest between the spouse and children. If you don’t have a surviving spouse or children, your parents are next in line to receive your assets, followed by any brothers and sisters.

    Dying without a will also leads to delays and extra expenses. The court appoints a bonded administrator to serve as an executor of the estate. In addition, any assets distributed to children under age 19 must be passed along to a bonded guardian or to the Public Trustee. The process of appointing these administrators is both expensive and time-consuming. It may also create situations where assets are disposed of without any planning for tax considerations.

    2. Power of Attorney for Personal Care (“POAPC”)

    Your clients will need a Living Will to ensure that their medical wishes are honoured. This legal document sets out how your client should be cared for in an emergency or if otherwise incapacitated. Their POAPC sets forth their wishes on topics such as resuscitation, assisted suicide requests, desired quality of life and end of life treatments including treatments they don’t want to receive. My husband and I have a Living Will and we tried to be as specific as possible in this document, realizing that we can’t account for every possibility, and this is why the next document you should have your client create is the Continuing Power of Attorney for Property.

    3. Continuing Power of Attorney for Property (“CPOA”)

    The CPOA is not to be confused with a “non-co Power of Attorney” or the Power of Attorney for Personal Care. The Continuing Power of Attorney for Property gives the person of your client’s choice the power to manage their financial affairs if they become incapable of managing them themselves. It gives this person, designated as their agent or attorney-in-fact, the power to handle such day-to-day tasks as:

    • Paying bills
    • Filing tax returns
    • Opening mail
    • Banking
    • Talking with accountants, lawyers and you as the Financial Advisor
    • Looking after pets
    • Voting on their behalf

    Without a power of attorney, their spouse has no legal authority to perform a variety of important tasks for them if they become incapacitated.

    Please note that a POAPC is not required for property that is jointly owned, i.e. Joint Tenancy with Right of Survivorship (“JTWROS”). Assets held in a single name however, will require a CPOA for any transactions to be executed during a period of the owners’ incapacitation.

    No one looks forward to Estate Planning and the issues that it addresses. However, a comprehensive, up to date plan will go a long way to assist bereaved families and business associates in a difficult and confusing time. You, as the Financial Advisor, can lessen the load by providing support, suggestions and other professional partners to help. Be sure to speak to a lawyer and/or accountant in your jurisdiction to learn more about these critical documents.

    As usual: There is a song title in this blog post. Did you find it?

    About Jennifer Kuta

    For more than 25 years, I have worked with Advisors helping them build their businesses. My commitment to you is to partner with you in your practice and offer solutions to help build your business.


    The contents of this blog are the personal views of the author and not necessarily the views of Caldwell Investment Management Ltd. The contents are provided as general in nature and should not be relied upon nor construed to be the rendering of advice. Readers should consult with their own compliance/legal advisors for advice on their specific circumstances before taking any action as sales and prospecting activities are subject to regulatory oversight.

  • Partners in Prospecting

    April 23, 2020

    Intergenerational Wealth Transfer: We are Family

    Intergenerational Wealth Transfer

    The next decade we will see a massive intergenerational transfer of wealth estimated to be $1 trillion, the largest in Canadian history*. Yet, there’s no guarantee that the tech-savvy heirs to this windfall will turn to their parents’ Advisors for financial advice and planning. What are you doing to plan for this transfer? Have you approached your clients about meeting their children?

    I worked with an Advisor whose largest elderly client died suddenly in a car accident. He was predeceased by his spouse and they had five children. The Advisor knew the names of the children and also that they were all adults. However, he had never met any of the children. He subsequently called them to give his condolences and they started to ask questions about their father’s accounts, what they needed for probate and how to transfer the accounts out. The Advisor tried to convince the eldest child that he had done well for his father and he would like to meet in person. You can imagine what happened next. Since the Advisor never developed a relationship with any of the children, they had no allegiance to him and he lost all the of accounts that had been with him for years – an unfortunate lesson to learn the hard way. This is why it is key to put a focus on your clients’ children before it is too late.

    Top Three Strategies to Manage Intergenerational Wealth Transfers

    Below are the strategies employed by Advisors that I personally know, who have been most successful in managing intergenerational wealth transfers.

    1. Provide an educational seminar or web series focusing on financial literacy for the children.

    As you know, there is talk about introducing these types of courses in high schools but it has not been implemented as of yet.

    Topics may include:

    • What would children do with a substantial sum of money, left to them by their parents?
    • What decisions would they make about their investments?
    • What would they do to demonstrate long-term asset protection strategies?

    Imagine a training opportunity where you work with your clients’ children for a length of time to address those questions, sharing the results with the parents at the end of the period. This would not only provide a solid experience for you and the next generation, but it would also allow for the formation of a relationship with those poised to inherit wealth.

    2. Invite your clients’ adult children to a dinner with the parents.

    One Advisor told me that he calls his clients and indicates that he wants to be introduced to the adult children so that when the time comes they will feel comfortable coming to them with questions about the estate. The Advisor said, it helps to get to know client’s children by sharing a meal. It doesn’t have to be expensive and not necessarily targeting only your high net worth clients.

    3. Hire for the next generation.

    Managing a next generation of clients requires a next generation of Advisors. Every week, we hear about next-gen children preferring the on-line discount broker approach to investing. There is a need for next-gen Advisors—and for a good reason. Next-gen clients will want to work with someone who will be flexible and truly listen to their ideas. Often when they look at Boomer aged Advisors, they may not see past the gray hair. Many firms are positioning themselves to capture the trillions of dollars of wealth that will transition between generations over the next 20 years by hiring multiple generations of Advisors or support staff to work with multiple generations of wealthy families. Everyone is searching for young, talented Advisors who have the luxury of being in demand.

    The key to any approach is to ensure your current clients understand your desire to meet with their children to bring them into the loop (provided your clients are onside with this approach because you have explained the importance to them). Adopting one or more of the above approaches can help you to retain assets, deepen your relationship with your existing clients and, perhaps, even gain some referrals from their children.

    *Investor Economics Insight, January 2019. Strategic Insight.

    As usual: There is a song title in this blog post. Did you find it?

    About Jennifer Kuta

    For more than 25 years, I have worked with Advisors helping them build their businesses. My commitment to you is to partner with you in your practice and offer solutions to help build your business.


    The contents of this blog are the personal views of the author and not necessarily the views of Caldwell Investment Management Ltd. The contents are provided as general in nature and should not be relied upon nor construed to be the rendering of advice. Readers should consult with their own compliance/legal advisors for advice on their specific circumstances before taking any action as sales and prospecting activities are subject to regulatory oversight.

  • Partners in Prospecting

    March 5, 2020

    Creating Personas – Everyday People

    I once worked with an Advisor who was concerned that her pipeline was not full enough. I asked who her “ideal prospects” were and she was very vague when it came to answering the question. The Advisor mentioned High Net Worth (“HNW”) clients – but who doesn’t want to go after HNW clients? It made me think that she possibly did not have a detailed description of a prospect who would be interested in her services and investment products.

    The question is: Without knowing your ideal prospects, how would you target them?

    Know Your Ideal Client

    You may have heard about creating Personas for your business and the importance of Personas.

    Personas are a detailed description of a fictional person who would buy your product or use your service. A Persona describes your ideal client’s behaviours, job role, responsibilities, priorities, pain points and personality traits.

    We sat down and created Personas for her “dream clients”. Later, the description for her personas was used to create marketing text for her website or any brochures/e-mails, etc., because you always focus on what makes the prospect react and what’s in it for them. This really helped pin point her sales efforts.

    Getting Started on Creating the Personas

    Our Buyer Persona Example

    The Advisor had accounting partners that specialized in evaluating the worth of a small business, so we decided to target small business owners. I have included a sample of “Selling the Small Business” Persona we created:

    Jeremy is a 65-year widower with no children who is the co-owner of his family bakery in Toronto, Ontario. The bakery has been in the family for over five decades, Jeremy’s great grandparents opened the original bakery. The business has done well over the years – with family members pitching in during the bad times and reaping in the benefits during the good times, as they obtained contracts from local restaurants.

    Recently Jeremy’s two brothers (one older and one younger) have been talking about selling the business. They believe the time is right because they have had a couple of offers from fair sized grocery stores. None of the brothers’ children are interested in running the business. Up until now, Jeremy has never had to worry about a major decision like this. He always had enough to provide for himself and his spouse when she was alive.

    Jeremy has several unanswered questions:

    • How will the company be valued?
    • How will the proceeds be divided? Since Jeremy does not have any children he has put in the most hours over the years.
    • One of the most important questions: What will he do with his spare time? Since Audrey’s death Jeremy has immersed himself into the business. Other than the occasional bridge game with his friends, he has no interests.

    Since it seems like the sale is inevitable (within the next two to three years), Jeremy has started to worry about the lump sum he will receive. He wonders how it will be taxed and what he should invest in to provide a steady income until his death. Audrey, Jeremy’s spouse, had breast cancer and he wants to leave a legacy in her name at the hospital that cared for her.

    Jeremy is not proud of his own history of investing. He has fallen for a few ‘hot tips’ that turned out to be disasters. As a result, he is lacking a strategy for investing and thinks it may be time to seek out an Advisor. He has a very close relationship with his lawyer and accountant so any Advisor he deals with, would have to accept them as partners.

    How do I use the Persona to My Advantage?

    Think about marketing pieces you may want to write targeting the small business owners. To get a prospect’s attention, it’s best to focus on their pain points. In this example some of Jeremy’s pain points include:

    • How do I value my company when it’s time to sell?
    • How do we fairly distribute the proceeds when it’s a family run business?
    • What will I do with all my spare time?
    • How will I invest the proceeds so that they provide me with a comfortable, worry-free retirement?

    Once you have created the Personas for each different type of person that would be your ideal client, you can target your marketing efforts towards creating your online presence, marketing material and sales e-mail/call campaigns.

    As usual: There is a song title in this blog post. Did you find it?

    About Jennifer Kuta

    For more than 25 years, I have worked with Advisors helping them build their businesses. My commitment to you is to partner with you in your practice and offer solutions to help build your business.


    The contents of this blog are the personal views of the author and not necessarily the views of Caldwell Investment Management Ltd. The contents are provided as general in nature and should not be relied upon nor construed to be the rendering of advice. Readers should consult with their own compliance/legal advisors for advice on their specific circumstances before taking any action as sales and prospecting activities are subject to regulatory oversight.

  • Brendan T.N. Caldwell, B.Sc., M.A., CFA

    President and CEO

    February 25, 2020

    For Investment Advisors that have been helping clients for some period of time, what questions should they be asking themselves about how to build their business?

  • Partners in Prospecting

    January 22, 2020

    Come Together – A step-by-step process for planning Successful Client/Prospecting Events

    Event organization is not easy – this is why there are professionals that have made careers out of it. If you plan events properly, prospect and client events can turn into cash cows for your practice. Recently, I was particularly impressed with one of my Advisor client’s success rate on seminars and events and I decided to interview him about his step-by-step process.

    The first thing he said was to give yourself plenty of time for the planning and implementation – ten weeks to be safe. Below is a four step process to help you plan a prosperous event, which I hope you will find helpful. Thank you Mr. Advisor (you know who you are) for sharing your wealth of experience in this regard.

    STEP ONE – What’s in it for your clients : Selecting an intriguing and helpful topic

    At this phase, the Advisor told me that he put himself into his clients’ heads. What would they find topical? What would compel them to travel to an event and spend precious time listening? One way to find out is to actually ask your clients. Let them know that although you can communicate via phone, e-mail and in person, you periodically want to host events so that you can discuss a topical subject that will benefit them. It also gives them a way to interact with like-minded people and even invite associates, friends and family (more on this approach later).

    He strongly recommended getting a guest speaker. This could mean inviting one of your firm’s analysts for a market dissection or even partnering with a fund company and asking one of their Portfolio Managers to share their expertise. In this case you must be careful to keep the topics focused on benefits to your clients such as the discipline it takes to achieve financial success, the thought process behind the investments and reasons why so many people fail.

    STEP TWO – Select a time, day and venue

    Decide if you want to host the event during a week or on a weekend and whether you want to provide breakfast, lunch or dinner. For the Advisor I spoke with, late afternoon mid-week worked best. The best venue he hosted was at a golf & country club and he served finger foods and beverages, which are affordably priced. You should also make sure your event is accessible by public transportation and has parking. Whatever venue you decide – ensure to visit, taste the food and experience the service in advance. REMEMBER – if the food is terrible with disappointing service – this is a direct reflection upon you. Make sure your speaker is available on your close date.

    STEP THREE – Designing the Invitation

    Now is the time to get your marketing hat on and create a professional and exciting invitation. Do not focus on the speaker’s background, but focus on what your clients will learn from the speaker by attending. Always remember that your compliance department has to approve the document and, if a fund company is involved, their compliance will have to review it and sign off as well. Be sure to include an RSVP deadline date and let them know you will be following up with a personal phone call. The Advisor said he got more people to attend when he actually mailed the invitation.

    STEP FOUR – Follow up

    Everyone requires a personal phone call to follow up whether you have sent an e-mail or mailed a hard copy of the invitation. At this time, the Advisor took an opportunity to extend a request for his clients to invite a friend, colleague or family member. The Advisor explained that he is available to help because he is looking to take on a select number of new clients. He assured his existing clients that any new potential clients would not compromise the work he does for them.

    Once clients have registered, check in periodically to give them extra minor details to entice them to actually attend. Sometimes, at the last minute, clients think “he won’t miss me if I change my mind and choose not to attend.” This is why you MUST confirm the day before – letting clients know the venue is set, speakers are booked and food has been ordered.

    You are now ready to welcome everyone, introduce your speakers and enjoy the event you have chosen to host!

    I want to thank our valued Advisors for taking the time to discuss this topic with me and sharing pictures of their successful events!

    And please contact us if you would like us to speak at one of your upcoming events.

    Note: There is a song title in this blog post. Did you find it?

    About Jennifer Kuta

    For more than 25 years, I have worked with Advisors helping them build their businesses. My commitment to you is to partner with you in your practice and offer solutions to help build your business.


    The contents of this blog are the personal views of the author and not necessarily the views of Caldwell Investment Management Ltd. The contents are provided as general in nature and should not be relied upon nor construed to be the rendering of advice. Readers should consult with their own compliance/legal advisors for advice on their specific circumstances before taking any action as sales and prospecting activities are subject to regulatory oversight.

  • Thomas S. Caldwell, C.M.

    Chairman

    January 6, 2020

    Let’s discuss networking. What do you do when you meet someone at an event and they give you their business card?

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