My industry is very regulated. Perhaps you knew this? I believe the securities industry is the most regulated industry in this country. The things we are mandated to do in order to be compliant leave those not familiar with the securities industry simply shaking their heads. Ultimately, these requirements should benefit the investor and the general public.
FINRA and the SEC each have their own mandates for the broker dealer and advisory community. In one example, the firm does due diligence on any products and services allowed on their platform. These in depth reviews are routine and repeated often. This is not enough as the advisor is also charged with doing their own reviews. I call this “kicking the bricks”.
Some companies bring their key staff to local areas and hold meetings to further educate advisors on their platform of services. Others find it more beneficial to bring large numbers of advisors to their home office locations for a two or three-day in depth meeting. Some hold webinars to inform. I don’t know if one form of meeting is better than another. What I do know is that the opportunity to talk with other advisors from around the country creates a great unintended by-product of the meeting.
Recently I had the opportunity to attend such a meeting in Southern California. In the dark awful days of winter, this was like a breath from heaven. Warm, sunny, beautiful vistas were mine when not in a large ballroom listening to speakers. It was a time to learn something new, get some R&R, and meet some new advisors from many different states. I also reconnected with a woman advisor I know from past conferences. That was an unexpected treat!
No matter how much technology exists to “supposedly” make life easier, I want to be able to eyeball the people I do business with. Human contact and dialogue will tell me things reading a prospectus or doing online research never will. I’m grateful for these opportunities and know they allow me to do a better job for my valued clients.
Looking under the hood is a good financial strategy for life.