Should you Hire a Financial Advisor? Depends on your Mindset.

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“As a society, we don’t understand relationship skills. Yet everything is at stake in people’s relationships. Mindset adds another dimension. It can help us understand even more about why some people are able to build lasting and satisfying relationships.”

– Carol Dweck, from the book “Mindset”

Carol Dweck is a researcher, educator and author of a marvelous book called Mindset, in which she discusses the importance of how we look at the world when it comes to success and achievement. In particular, the book discusses the important role mindset plays in the success or failure of relationships. Dweck makes the point that the very best, happiest and most productive relationships are based on the foundation of a similar mindset, in which two or more people have the same way of looking at the world, and what is most important.

In my years of experience advising families on their financial decisions, I have come to believe that the best kind of advisor-client relationship must operate as a partnership built the same way. One of the greatest treasures a family can discover is to find a financial advisor who is able to understand and appreciate their most important goals and values, and who can help guide them to make the best possible financial decisions over a lifetime, or even several generations, to achieve their goals and fulfill their values.

I have also come to believe strongly in Dweck’s philosophy about mindset in establishing this kind of relationship – the most important aspect of your family’s relationship with a financial advisor will be how well your personality, mindset, goals and expectations “fit” with the service model, philosophy and value proposition of the advisor you select. In fact, if this kind of “fit” does not exist, then the advisory relationship is destined to fail, regardless of the value created or investment performance delivered by the advisor. Many families end up wasting valuable time, energy and money by establishing a relationship with an advisor without first focusing on the importance of having a common mindset.

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[Click on image to take Scorecard]

At Concentus, we prioritize the determination of “Fit” as the first and most important step in any potential advisory relationship, before moving on to a discussion of the specific planning advice and services our clients require. Because of this focus, we have developed a self-discovery tool called the Advisor Right Fit Scorecard to help people embark on the process of selecting the very best financial advisory platform to meet their needs.

You can use this tool to evaluate your own mindset and expectations, and to help you discover what is likely to be the most effective type of advisory relationship for you and your family. It may also help you avoid making a poor choice, and the bad experience of making this realization too late.

You can use the Scorecard to evaluate your mindset in 8 critical areas which are likely to influence your fit with your financial advisor. In each of the 8 categories, you will find a range of ways in which you might best describe your own personal mindset. Simply choose the description that best fits your personal belief in that category. Once completed, you will receive a Total Score. To interpret your results, please read our Using the Scorecard guide.

We hope this exercise is helpful to you, as a tool to discover more about your personal mindset and how it influences the most important relationships in your life.

We love your comments and feedback and want to know if the Advisor Right Fit Scorecard was helpful for you, so please feel free to leave your comments here.

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About the Author:

Erik is one of the co-founders of Concentus Wealth Advisors and currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer of the firm. With over 25 years of industry experience, Erik guides the firm’s overall strategy. After graduating from Amherst College in 1991, Erik spent a year working with Rittenhouse Capital Management, before joining Gerald in 1992. Erik currently holds his general securities registrations and insurance licenses, as well as CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and Chartered Financial Consultant designations. In addition to his formal designations, Erik has appeared on CNBC’s Worldwide Exchange, Fox News’ America’s News HQ, Live Well’s Mary on Money, CN8’s Money Matters Today and The Real Estate Connection. In 2012, Erik was one of thirteen advisors named to Main Line Today’s Top Financial Advisors list. Erik lives in Bryn Mawr, PA with his wife and three children. He serves on the boards of the Philadelphia Chapter of the Salvation Army, Acting Without Boundaries (serving young people with disabilities) and The Holy Child School at Rosemont. In addition, he is on the financial advisory board of the Sisters of St. Francis in Media, PA.

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