What Should a Financial Planner Do?

There’s a lot of misunderstanding about what value a financial planner can bring. There are also just as many questions about what a financial planner does all day. Which tasks and priorities actually translate to value for clients?

I used to spend a lot of my working hours on tasks that ultimately added no value for clients. I spent hours of my day:

  • Researching and evaluating mutual fund managers
  • Arguing over which fund managers to keep and which to replace
  • Meeting with wholesalers of different investment products
  • Writing performance updates to clients

Watching Stock prices. NOT what I do all day.

If you eliminate all of these useless tasks that add no value to clients, what’s a financial planner left to do? As it turns out, a lot.

The real work of a Financial Planner:


  • A Financial Planner will help bring order to your financial life, by assisting you in getting your financial house in order with your investments, insurance, estate taxes, cash flow, etc.


  • A Financial Planner will help you follow through on financial commitments, by working with you to prioritize your goals, show you the steps you need to take, and regularly review your progress towards achieving them.


  • A Financial Planner brings insights from the outside to help you avoid emotionally driven decisions in important money matters, by being available to consult with you at key moments of decision-making, doing the research necessary to ensure you have all the information, and managing and disclosing any of our own potential conflicts of interest.


  • A Financial Planner will work with you to anticipate your life transactions and to be financially prepared for them by regularly assessing any potential life transactions that might be coming, and creating the action plan necessary to address and manage them ahead of time.


  • A Financial Planner will explore what specific knowledge will be needed to succeed in your situation, by first thoroughly understanding your situation, then providing the necessary resources to facilitate your decision, and explaining the options and risks associated with each choice.


  • A Financial Planner will attempt to help you achieve the best life possible but will work in concert with you, not just for you to make this possible, by taking the time to clearly understand your background, philosophy, needs and objectives, work collaboratively with you and on your behalf and offer transparency around our own costs and compensation.