BISA Magazine - Quarter 2, 2017 - 23
By Andrew Singer
here is a crisis in the
leadership world, said John
Taylor Rhett III, chairman and senior managing
partner, Red Rock Strategic
"Look around the room," said Rhett, a
speaker at the BISA Annual Convention
in Hollywood, Fla. Many of the convention attendees were in their late 40s
to 60s, he noted, and management remains largely "old style." The response
to customer resistance, for instance, is
to "row harder" to outwork the competition, he said. Typical today is the
55-year-old investment manager who is
not at home with technology and working with a business strategy with which
he or she is not comfortable.
All of this is exacerbated in banks, Rhett
said, because investments, while valued,
still don't really contribute a significant
portion of overall bank revenues and
profits. This means bank investment
programs often get "whipsawed," he
said. Historically, senior management
might encourage annuity sales, for example. But then the interest rate climate
changes or the bank needs funding, so
senior management pushes for deposits.
The brokerage program manager no
longer gets so many in-house referrals.
Senior management doesn't want to
Meanwhile, big data is changing
everything. "We've never known more
about our clients." Rhett said. "This is a
secular, not a cyclical, change. We have
new technologies, like data aggregation, which can be a boon to wealth
But technology requires training.
"Strategically, we need to invest in
this technology," he said. "But you just
can't put it on advisors' desktops with
one day of training and then ask, 'Why
aren't they using this incredible tool?'
We teach field leaders so they can be
advocates for the technology."
All of that need for change is driven by
fundamental change in the way consumers process information. If you're
an advisor, "you can't just glad hand
your way into a client's good graces,"
Rhett said. "Solid knowledge and technological adeptness are a must." ▲