Moving from Successful Advisor to Successful Leader

Beverly FlaxingtonBeverly Flaxington is a practice management consultant. She answers questions from advisors facing human resource issues. To submit yours, email us here.

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Dear Readers,

I have the distinct pleasure of teaching five graduate courses this semester on various topics around leadership. In addition, while our firm mostly focuses on growth strategies, lately we have been asked to speak and run workshops on advisors stepping into leadership – moving from the role of successful advisor into leader and CEO.

Most educational and training tracks in our profession don’t teach advisors the core skills necessary to emerge as a leader. In my grad classes, students will often reflect they enjoy what they learn, but they don’t see it applied in the real world! In addition, being in DC last week for client work reminded me of the lack of leadership I see in our elected officials. The inability to collaborate and organize on behalf of constituents is truly shocking. Or maybe, sadly, not so shocking.

All these factors have led me to make this week’s column all about strong leadership. There are theories on conscious leadership, servant leadership, transactional versus transformational leadership and so on. Let’s look at what it means to be a leader and CEO in the advisory space, running an effective team within a larger organization or being the leader of your own RIA.