Published November 22, 2017
Howdy y’all! One of the things I enjoy the most about my role at Private Advisor Group is facilitating opportunities for our advisors to become even better at what they do by fostering a sense of community. One way that Private Advisor group does this is through our events, which are both educational and fun. This month we gathered 70 of Private Advisor Group’s top financial advisors and headed on down to Nashville for our Elite Retreat. Each advisor was greeted with a custom cowboy hat and an agenda jam-packed with activities. For two days, PAG’s best were able to mix and mingle while earning continuing education credits and enjoying Music City.
PAG Continues to Enhance Advisor Offerings
The purpose of the Elite Retreat is not only to educate advisors and present networking opportunities, but also to reaffirm Private Advisor Group’s dedication to offering advisors the support and service they need. Pat Sullivan, Managing Director, kicked off day one of the event by highlighting areas in which PAG is making focused investments. By far, the most significant is the investment in technology to support compliance and regulatory requirements, followed closely by the investment in technology to thwart cybersecurity risks. “There are bad people out there doing bad things and we need to be prepared for that,” added Kevin Sullivan, Director of Advisory Compliance. Pat went on to discuss PAG’s efforts to assist advisors in growing their practices. PAG has sourced new programs and negotiated discount rates with forward-thinking firms like BizEquity, Riskalyze, TPFG, and AtiFi. “These programs are designed to help our advisors grow organically and through new client acquisitions,” said Pat.
Next up, I moderated a panel discussion on the rise of leveraged model portfolios in an advisory practice. The esteemed group of panelists included some of the top asset managers in the country and Steve LaChance, Senior Vice President, LPL Financial. The conversation centered on the benefits of outsourcing asset management to Turnkey Asset Management Programs (TAMPS) or using a model wealth portfolio such as the one offered by LPL. My take: while the fees associated with these resources continue to drop, the benefit of time regained to focus on business building activities makes it hard to justify insourcing investment management. The rest of the group agreed with me as we looked at some recent studies conducted by firms like Envestnet and Cerulli.
Advisors Sharpen their Skills
Day two gave our advisors the opportunity to educate themselves on the “therapy” aspect of financial planning. This is a role that successful advisors must fulfill in their relationships with clients, working to appropriately manage their emotions as well as providing a listening ear. Advisors have a responsibility to save their clients from themselves. The audience also benefitted from a discussion about utilizing 529 plans as a replacement for expensive trusts, in addition to saving for education. Chris Stack went into great detail regarding the benefits of using 529 plans as a tax deferred way to save money “without maximums, with no limit on years, no RMDs, and low expenses.” I walked away wondering why I have not been putting more money into these plans myself!
Of course, no trip to Nashville is complete without a visit down Broadway to the bars and music venues that make Nashville such a famous destination. PAG advisors took advantage of it all, visiting Honky Tonk, Tootsies, Acme Feed & Seed and more. I think I speak for all of us when I say we thoroughly enjoyed the PAG party at the George Jones museum complete with Dolly Parton and Tim McGraw impersonators as well as live music by Nash Country.
Overall, the PAG Elite Retreat was a chance for us to collectively celebrate successes, learn new valuable skills, and connect with other advisors. To find out more about the Elite Retreat or other PAG events, visit our conferences page.