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Succession Planning for Financial Advisors: Building an Enduring Business, + Website by David Grau Sr.

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Chapter 9 Course Corrections

So, you have a succession plan, and you’ve put it in writing and done the computations. It is going to change. Make that part of the plan. That’s part of the fun. That is what owning a business is all about, and that is why independent advisors are such a special group of people.

Returning to the Harbor

The first launch of our Lifestyle Succession Plan occurred relatively recently, only about six years ago. Since Tranche 1 in the planning process takes, on average, about five to seven years to complete, we now have our first group of “shipbuilders” coming back in and preparing for Tranche 2. The tales of their journey are fascinating and provide an excellent opportunity to learn from other advisors (G-1, G-2, and G-3) firsthand. This is part of the continuing evolution of the planning process.

About one-third of the businesses reported that the plans had gone more or less as expected and with good results—results that certainly justified the immediate start of Tranche 2. The common struggles seemed to center on finding the right people to support the plan and the business interests. Another third of the businesses reported that while the plan did its job and worked as expected, it took too long and/or they started too late and they needed to accelerate the process substantially. Fairly, about half of those that wanted to accelerate the process were driven not by G-1’s preferences, but by the preferences of the succession teams. G-2 and G-3 level ...

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