A day in the life of a financial advisor

Much like any career, the financial advisor juggles a number of different tasks and responsibilities each day. That said (and with help from some financial advisors and Investopedia), we’ve put together a list of some of the main activities a financial advisor can expect to work on in a given day – after getting the kids to school and walking the dog, of course.

Upon arriving at work in the morning, the financial advisor may need to:

  • Serve existing clients. This can include in-person meetings, as well as meetings by phone or email. Meetings may simply be check-ins to ensure the client is comfortable with how his or her investments are performing, financial market updates, annual portfolio reviews and/or offers of new services for the client (like tax and estate planning or insurance). These meetings can also be more casual in nature and may just be to discuss changes in the client’s lifestyle, employment, marital status or children’s needs.
  • Prospect for new clients. This important activity can include the financial advisor reaching out to existing clients for referrals; connecting with centres of influence – other professionals, like lawyers or accountants, who may refer clients to the financial advisor with the expectation that the financial advisor will do the same for them – to share business-building opportunities; sponsorship events and activities; as well as visiting, calling and emailing prospects to introduce themselves and their value.
  • This may include a lunch meeting to reconnect with a client, prospect or centre of influence.

After lunch, the financial advisor’s “things-to-do” list may include:

  • Financial planning work. A financial advisor needs to add value by conducting due diligence on the types of services and products they recommend to their clients. This work can include speaking with portfolio managers, researching tax-reduction strategies and maintaining a strong knowledge of economic, market and industry/product trends.
  • Ongoing education. A financial advisor’s learning doesn’t stop with the completion of their mutual fund registration or life insurance licensing. Many pursue further credentialing by obtaining a Certified Financial Planner (CFP), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), Masters of Business Administration (MBA) or other designation(s). The financial advisor is expected to maintain and grow his or her knowledge through ongoing education. There may be a minimum number of continuing education (CE) credits that are required for financial advisors to complete each year, and CE credits can usually be gained through online or in-person courses, seminars and industry events.

Of course, there are plenty of other elements to the financial advisor’s day, including administrative duties, writing and editing content for blogs or websites, preparing for client and prospect meetings, as well as the ever-important coffee runs. By covering all these activities, financial advisors can confidently add value when helping clients meet their short- and long-term financial needs.