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After undertaking an exhaustive research process on the best fit for his business, support team, and personal goals, Adam found a home with Commonwealth. With an established, successful practice, Adam wondered if he needed something more to help him reach the next level. "I think the attitude Commonwealth has is if you've gotten this far in your career, you don't need a carrot or a stick." What did Adam find? It's the stuff of . . . fairy tales?Q
How does Commonwealth allow you to be the advisor you want to be?
I can be my own person. If I want to sell something a certain way or promote something a certain way, I have the latitude. I'm treated like a grown-up, not getting slapped on the wrist by Compliance. I can feel free and thrive and be creative. Where I was before, there were so many limitations. I feel that the world is my oyster now. I'm allowed to conduct my business—obviously, within limits and reason—the way that I want to. And no one's going to judge me for building relationships.
I'm able to truly think outside the box and be inspired. I feel that Commonwealth is collaborative enough that I can bounce these ideas off the team, and they’ll say, "Yeah, we've seen that work," or, "No, not such a good idea."
Commonwealth's culture allows me to think creatively. It allows ideas to flourish. It allows me to build relationships in unique ways that work for me and my clients.
Commonwealth and the people I interact with—I feel honored to work with them, and I think they feel the same. It's this mutual respect and trust. And it's just—it is a fairy tale.Q
What's your experience with Commonwealth's leadership been like?
There is no stuffiness; nobody's wearing ties. These people are real people I could have a real conversation with. There is just no BS. I remember asking, "So, what's your secret?" And Joe Deitch said, "Look, it's super simple. We treat you guys like you treat your clients. That's it. That's our formula." Whoa.
They make me feel at ease, comfortable, welcomed, supported, in collaboration with a true partnership. It's just a trusting relationship.
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What was your experience like with Commonwealth's Practice Management team's yearlong program, Power in Practice?
It's a yearlong experience; you meet quarterly in person. What sticks out is the connections I've made with the other advisors. We got very personal and built great relationships over the course of a year, and I feel that I've got this strong bond with other people throughout the country now. I feel I have a strong connection with the Practice Management team, too, like I can call them up for anything.
Peering into my numbers, working on my business—that was unique, something I had never done before. It gave me insight as to how I can dissect the analysis, how I can review, compared to my peers, from the kind of fees I'm charging to everything else. Now, if I've got a question about something or about a process I'm thinking of, I can reach out to this peer group. Or, I feel comfortable enough reaching out to the Practice Management team and asking about other advisors who might be good to connect with. It was an incredibly impactful year.
The practice management process at Commonwealth is customizable. It's as good as the effort I put in—that's how much I get out. It's a collaborative environment with real-time consulting and personalized advice. You normally have to pay thousands of dollars for something like that. Having access to this team is astonishing.Q
The transition decision and process can be daunting. How did our transition teams make it easier for you and your staff?
For many years, I would get calls once a week, several times a month, from recruiters and I'd ignore them. Despite people trying to show me the light or show me the other side, I thought I was happy. And I don't know how that could have changed. It was on a whim, I said, "Fine, I'll talk to your recruiter." And because of that, I'm sitting where I am right now.
I'm precise and detail oriented. So, I asked a thousand questions. And what I was told is, "Look, you're going to be fine—90-plus percent of your clients are going to transfer over. You have to trust us and follow the timeline." I literally just did that. I relied on Commonwealth and the team, that they had done this, and I let any fear and anxiety go. It worked out obviously for the better that I trusted the recruiting team. They said that it would go smoothly. And it absolutely did.
To me, it came down to trust and knowing that they had gone down this path many times and they had my best interests at heart. It goes back to accountability. I had a lot of questions, and I felt like I could ask a question, whether it was technology or whatever, and it would be answered. People got back to me, and that continued to build trust and confidence.