Welcome back to the 308th episode of the Financial Advisor Success Podcast!
My guest on today’s podcast is Matthew Blocki. Matthew is the CEO of Equilibrium Wealth Advisors, an independent RIA based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, that oversees more than $275 million in assets under management for 330 client households.
What’s unique about Matthew, though, is how he and his firm have implemented pre-meeting, during-meeting, and post-meeting checklists to create more efficient processes that not only save their staff (and clients’) time, but also map out all the details to be covered for each client meeting, ensuring that no detail in the client’s life is missed.
In this episode, we talk in-depth about why and how Matthew and his firm decided to develop and then implement their pre-, during-, and post-meeting checklists as a way to better position themselves as their clients’ personal CFOs offering a more concierge experience, how Matthew leverages one-to-many recorded videos and online FAQs to increase his communication with existing clients on key issues, and why, while Matthew feels his firm is only incrementally better than other good advisory firms, he attributes the 4x growth of his firm over the past 4 years to the fact that, like horses in a race, sometimes being just incrementally better than your competition and beating them out by an inch is all it takes to be the winner of the race.
We also talk about how Matthew made the decision to break away from a large insurance company after a point of self-reflection where he realized that his career goals weren’t really truly helping him grow as an advisor and were really set by the company’s culture and its internal competition structure that made him feel like he had to just keep getting more new clients instead of focusing more on the existing ones, why, after considering corporate and tuck-in RIA models, Matthew ultimately decided to go the independent RIA route as he felt it was the best way for him to maintain autonomy and implement the systems and processes that he felt would best serve his clients the way he wanted to see them served, and how, after realizing that Matthew and his team were serving close to 700 clients at the insurance company, he decided to run an analysis of his revenues and profits and saw how 80% of his revenue and profits were coming from just 20% of his clients… and consequently decided that those would be the only ones he would even want to continue with, and would leave the rest behind, in the transition to independence.
And be certain to listen to the end, where Matthew shares how he formulated the 125-150 client capacity targets for his advisory teams that he set to determine when to hire the next new advisor (to ensure his existing advisors have enough time to really focus on their client experience, and do not reach a stage of burnout), why Matthew implements a top five values exercise with his clients so that they can focus on what is best for them, their family, and their peace of mind rather than just what is the best financial decision, and why Matthew believes that for him, the key to being a successful advisory firm owner has been the recognition that the adversity he’s faced and tension he’s felt at various points along the way is what helps him to recognize when he’s actually growing and learning and is about to get to the next level.
So, whether you’re interested in learning about how having checklists for each meeting stage helps Matthew’s firm carve out more time to focus on the client experience, how implementing client capacity goals ensures that Matthew’s advisors are not overworked and gives the firm the room to grow and scale over time, or how, by offering direct indexing, Matthew helps his physician clients maximize their tax-loss harvesting, then we hope you enjoy this episode of the Financial Advisor Success podcast, with Matthew Blocki.