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Pareto Systems is a consulting firm dedicated to fee-for-service professionals. Our practice management and relationship management programs are ideally suited for:
  • Financial Professionals
  • Insurance Specialists
  • Estate Planning Attorneys
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2020-06-09 • 3 minute read

I’ve seen it time and time again. Being more productive doesn’t mean that you have to work harder or put in longer hours. You just have to be strict and economical with your time.

You do it every day, without thinking about it. When you buy a power screwdriver to replace your rusty old manual one, you are buying time. You are focused on accomplishing the same job but in less time and with less energy expended.

As I identified earlier, one way to manufacture capacity, free up time and reduce hassle factors is to right-size your client base. Focusing on how small you can stay has worked wonders for several advisors who hit a plateau, but that isn’t to say it is necessary for every advisor. Some advisors transfer B and C clients to a Call Center. Others hire a protégé to manage B clients to free themselves up to provide enhanced service to A clients.

Another approach is to come back to the Pareto Principal. If 80 percent of your business is stemming from 20 percent of your clients then you must invest 80 percent of your time with those clients on a one-to-one basis. And if 20 percent of your business is coming from 80 percent of your clients perhaps a one-to-many approach for your B clients using a managed money platform is the answer.

You’ve probably considered a managed money platform for a block of your B clients but never executed on the concept. I can tell you this - and this stems from countless observations - done properly, following a predictable and sustainable process that is positioned professionally and as a benefit to your clients, this can manufacture time and capacity to ensure that the business serves your life.

The key in that statement is that you position the concept as a benefit to your B clients. I say that because many advisors feel that the optics (from the clients’ perspective) of transitioning all or even just a block of B clients to a managed money program will be negative. Surely clients will feel they are being trivialized and will eventually defect to another advisor? I’m here to tell you that it all comes down to how you position it. Not to oversimplify it, but you can follow this simple checklist as a starting point: 

  • Research - It should go without saying, but scrutinize the platforms available to you and be in no hurry to select one that is the best fit.
  • Apply a two-meeting approach - The first meeting is for introducing the concept and the second is for the actual transition itself.
  • The importance of process - Explain the difference between a financial plan and on-going financial planning. 

This is the recipe for the secret sauce, for lack of a better analogy. With your B clients, you want to explain how this is a proactive and ongoing process that helps you both take a long view to financial planning while at the same time still being nimble enough to react to fluctuations and external events along the way.

Many clients think of financial planning as a one-off event where the advisor diagnoses the client’s issues, identifies their goals and objectives and then creates a 120-page plan that the client probably won’t read or understand but might feel better simply holding.

True financial planning is a fluid and dynamic process that can be affected greatly by Critical Life Events; any one of which can instantly render that 120-page plan obsolete. When you are transitioning your relationship to a managed money approach, you can re-frame the client’s understanding of your role in their life. It is one thing to explain the difference between transactional commissions and transparent asset management fees, but a Fee-Worthy Advisor goes deeper than that.

The Fee-Worthy Advisor uses words like “process”, “consistency” and “predictability” - not in terms of returns on a statement but in terms of advisor-client engagement. They use metaphors like the weather, a GPS and the seasons to help the client conceptualize how the advisor navigates through storms and seasonal swings. The markets are like the weather - you can anticipate some storms and others you cannot. The markets are like the seasons. You can count on the seasons of life but the severity of each season can fluctuate from year to year.

This can help your clients truly understand your role and your value and see past turbulent periods.

Many advisors say that having a Fee-Worthy mindset puts you on the same side of the table as your client. I say that it puts you both on the same wavelength, and that understanding competitor-proofs your clients, minimizes their anxieties about external factors and events and improves your refer-ability. It also has proven to dramatically reduce the daily frequency of inbound client calls because of their renewed confidence in you and your process, and that takes the transitional process from time well spent to the best investment you’ll ever make.

Continued Success!

Contributed by: Duncan MacPherson

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Achieve Scalable Growth through the Blue Square Method

The Blue Square Method is all about helping someone methodically achieve self-actualization. To become the best version of themself - personally and professionally. Framed in ambition, purpose, meaning, fulfillment and gratitude. Taking nothing for granted, but being happy with what we have as we aspire to what we want.

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2020-06-08 • 10 second read

“It would be great if the world cooperated with our plans on a consistent basis, but that is not the way it is. Let’s face it; that’s why clients hire you. Friction and uncertainty come with the territory. Your ability to deal with this reality is a major factor that separates the best from the rest.”

Excerpt from The Advisor Playbook

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2020-06-05 • 20 second read

Critical life events that are going to happen to your clients. Whether an inheritance or a liquidity event, that money is going to flow. Your process has to take into account all the dynamics around continuity and succession, family investment legacy and these critical life events. You're not just managing money now, you're managing relationships through change and crisis. Make sure you're not playing defense.

Work with my team to learn how to help your clients deal with their critical life events:

2020-06-04 • 6 minute video

In this episode of the Blue Square Video Series, Duncan suggests taking this opportunity to work on your own personal and professional development as minor adjustments can lead to major enhancements.

For instant access to videos, scripts and templates to help you refine your client processes check out the Pareto Systems Knowledge Bank:

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2020-06-03 • 20 second read

Advisors often convince themselves everything will be fine. It’s easy to do when the markets are chugging along. But inertia confidence can be a powerful, crippling force. Remember Blockbuster? Blockbuster had a chance to buy Netflix, and they said “No, we got this. This is fine.” It’s Darwinian and those who can adapt will survive.

2020-06-02 • 6 minute video

Focus on where the puck is going Join Duncan in this episode of the Blue Square Video Series as he discusses the importance of continuity, succession and family investment legacy planning with your clients to ensure they grow further into your process as their life unfolds and their needs evolve.

To learn more about continuity and succession, we recommend reading Intergenerational Wealth Expert Tom Deans’ book: “Every Family’s Business” and checking out his website at:

Also, look out for an upcoming webinar Tom and Duncan are planning, details to follow!

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2020-06-01 • 20 second read

The key to reaching the next level is to take your processes from a concept in your head and galvanize your vision and deliverables on paper for you, your team, and your clients to see. None of what you do is an asset or an intellectual property unless it’s documented. If it’s in your head, it’s just a concept.

Turn your good intentions into a proprietary process. Visit:

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2020-05-29 • 20 second read

Being good at what you do is expected by a client. For clients to feel it would be a disservice to a friend not to make an introduction requires you to be better than good.

Providing an exemplary level of service and communicating your value with clarity allows clients to buy into a relationship with you, not just products from you. It lets you exceed their expectations. Being refer-able actually does lead to referrals.

2020-05-28 • 12 minute video

Focus on 'what could be' rather than dwell on 'what could have been.' In this episode, Duncan discusses how, during times of turbulence and volatility, the art and science of being a Financial Advisor is revealed as this isn't just about wealth management, it's more about relationship management.

Important links: Chris Jeppesen and Duncan MacPherson upcoming webinar:

Lavish Cards:

For access to videos, scripts and templates to help you be your clients’ voice of reason check out the Pareto Systems Knowledge Bank:

Idea Decanter:

Pareto Systems:

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2020-05-27 • 20 second read

Consultants focus on the lifetime value of a relationship. You are in the relationship business as much as you are in the field noted on your business card. Use tangible tools as a symbol of your professionalism and as an extension of your brand, and your results will be outstanding.

Learn more about using tangible tools, visit:

Pareto Systems
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