I started my practice almost 12 years ago and I devoted a huge part of it, to helping advisors with their clients. It’s a great way to get referrals, but there are times when the help I provided led me to nowhere. That’s fine because you pay it forward and you always end up getting it back in return.
I will say that for almost 12 years, I’ve maybe been taken advantage of by two advisors. While I never really call people out for wasting my time, I recently made an exception. About a year ago, an advisor brought me a very troubling situation with a client where excise taxes would cost their client millions. I spent hours and hours, on the phone with them and introduced them to a specialist who could help them out. When I presented a retainer letter to the advisor’s client, the very opinionated client was nowhere to be found. Kids today would say I was ghosted.
These things happen. What annoyed me was that the advisor wasn’t apologetic for his client wasting my time, but what annoyed me was his narcissism. During this whole dance with his client, he wasted my time calling me and suggesting that I wasn’t charging the client enough, mind you I was never retained by the client.
I brought this up with this advisor lately and this is the only time I’ve ever had a dust-up with one of these advisors. He made every excuse in the book and I said that while he isn’t responsible for his client’s behavior, he was responsible for his and a simple apology for his client wasting my time, would have sufficed.
I emailed the advisor because I was working with a client who needed a new third-party administrator for a plan that was completely screwed up and I recommended the one TPA that I knew, who could do the work. While the client was haggling, I had no time for wasting the TPA’s time. My time is valuable, so is the time of another plan provider.