14 years in the retirement plan business and I have seen quite a bit. Two disasters that I witnessed close by involved the fall of a fiduciary and the disestablishment of a very successful third party administrator (TPA).
I am not trying to bring up some old sordid details. While the situations were dissimilar, one similar trait held by both providers led to their downfall: arrogance.
If there is one trait in business that can be fatal (besides stealing from your clients) is arrogance. You shouldn’t think that you’re bigger than this business and be stubborn to change. I always say the beauty of this business is that I learn something new everyday, whether it’s a change in the law or regulations, or lean about a new provider or whatever it may be. The arrogant provider is immune to the advice and has little care in changing their business model even if the industry is changing around them.
The point is that the providers who thrive in this business aren’t arrogant, they are always willing to listen to new things and willing to learn new things.