Advisor Blog

Lessons from a champion: 3 keys to leading an exceptional team

When Fidelity scheduled Coach Krzyzewski (Coach K), the coach of the men’s basketball team at Duke and the U.S. national team, to headline a keynote for their executive summit, I doubt they foresaw he would just have won his fifth national championship. Serendipity aside, he delivered one of the most memorable speeches in a conference…

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Secrets to Growth: The Difference Between a Racehorse and a Pack Mule

Most firms in our industry start their race like racehorses: dynamic, exciting and growing rapidly. But after a couple of decades, many firms begin to resemble a pack mule: stodgy, predictable and relatively stagnant. We have the unique perspective, having conducted analytical benchmarking reports for hundreds of independent firms of varying sizes and backgrounds over…

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“The Thin Green Line:” The Difference Between Being Wealthy and Being Rich

What is the difference between being wealthy and being rich? It is one of the biggest questions our industry has wrestled with for many years. That is why I was quite excited to read “The Thin Green Line,” Paul Sullivan’s new book. Paul writes the “Wealth Matters” column at The New York Times, and I…

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Robo Wars: The Race to Zero

If you think the current battle between Schwab and the robos is just an amusing distraction, think again. If you don’t adapt, you might become collateral damage to a battle that is just picking up steam. I have been watching this clash with some surprise at the independent robo- adviser’s strong reaction to Schwab’s new…

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Goodbye Wealth Management: Hello FinLife

Remember when the financial world was really simple? It wasn’t that long ago that there were brokerage firms, banks, insurance companies and independent financial planners with clearly defined roles and descriptions. How the world has changed. Last year when I received our valuation from Lazard, I spent a little extra time looking at the different…

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Mega War: How the Fidelity Acquisition of eMoney Might Change Your Life

I have written at length about the changing landscape created by robo-advisers and mega direct-to- consumer brands like the fund companies, banks and custodians. And while I don’t have a crystal ball, I think the acquisition of eMoney by Fidelity — for a rumored $250 million — might be a real canary in the coal…

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Lessons From a Play: The Super Bowl Debacle and What You Can Learn From It

I was as dumbfounded as anyone at the end of the game. With a minute left and three timeouts still to use, with the game’s best running back in the back field (who had just pounded out four yards) and one yard to Super Bowl victory, the coach decided to let the clock run, then…

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The One New Year’s Resolution That Really Works

Every year starts with millions of resolutions that are often broken before Valentine’s Day rolls around. However, there is one resolution that can significantly change your life and it’s remarkably easy to put to work: I promise to make no new resolutions until I figure out how to make them stick. The star-studded Market Counsel…

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Mistakes Happen: How to Evaluate and Cope With the People That Make Them

It’s crunch time for the NFL teams as they come down to the final games of the season and fight to make the playoffs. For the teams on the bubble or fighting for postseason positioning, every play seams important, every mistake magnified. It’s fascinating to see how each coach, and every leader on the field…

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Clash of the Titans: Bionic Advisers Versus Robo-Advisers

“Hello Robo, I’m nervous about my investments, I’m not sure they are OK. What should I do? No I don’t want another email telling me everything is fine with my strategy. I really need to know if there’s some changes I should be considering, and while we are emailing back and forth, my wife and…

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