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How to Keep Your Clients’ Kids from Firing You

October 23, 2017

The vast majority of the children of financial advice clients ditch their parents’ advisors. Advisors who want to hang on to the next generation will need to connect with them emotionally, Kathleen Burns Kingsbury tells ThinkAdvisor.

Up to 95% of children no longer work with their parents’ advisors once they get their inheritance, according to Kingsbury, a former psychotherapist and bank examiner and founder of consulting firm KBK Wealth Connection who also teaches financial planning psychology at the graduate level at Bentley University, according to ThinkAdvisor. Kingsbury tells the publication “a large majority” of advisors don’t feel comfortable talking about how money and emotions are entangled. And that’s keeping them from developing the skills to tackle the emotional side of finance and, by extension, prevents them from building relationships with the next generation, she tells ThinkAdvisor.

Advisors also have a problem talking about death, says Kingsbury. But engaging in such conversations creates emotional connections, she tells the publication, which boosts the probability of keeping the next generation’s assets on their books.

“An advisor with less emotional intelligence may be a very good mathematician and good at investing but isn’t great at connecting with a family and the next generation,” she tells ThinkAdvisor.

The emotional connection is particularly important in the age of robo-advisors, Kingsbury insists. Advisors can certainly use technology for their benefit but they also have the ability to talk to the next generation of clients about their parents aging and about their worries when it comes to saving for a house or raising kids, she tells the publication.

By Alex Padalka