2016 Summer Reading List | Lord Abbett

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Practice Management

Here’s a list of books that can help advisors improve and build their practices.

This Practice Management article is intended for financial advisors only (registered representatives of broker/dealers or associated persons of Registered Investment Advisors).

There are few things better than a good book on a beautiful summer's day. Together with the help from planners and wealth management execs, we curated a list of titles that advisors should not miss.

Whether it is practice management, client communications, leadership development, or just an inspirational book to read by the beach or in a hammock under a tree, we have it covered.

1) The Advisor Playbook, by Duncan MacPherson and Chris Jeppesen

Recommended by Connor Dunlop, associate vice president—investments, at Benjamin F. Edwards, St. Louis

“This is a great way to analyze your business, better develop your internal processes, and develop a more defined value proposition for your current and future clients. The end goal is to better articulate what you provide to clients and to align your process to make sure it meets their expectations.”

2) Superforecasting, by Philip E. Tetlock and Dan Gardner

Recommended by Daniel Kern, chief investment strategist of TFC Financial Management, Boston

"Tetlock and Gardner talks extensively about the importance of measurement, so that [advisors] can learn from success and failure. Another valuable tip is to break down large problems into more manageable increments, using some commonsense examples to illustrate their points. As part of hypothesis testing, the authors emphasize the importance of seeking contrary views."

3) How to Say It to Seniors, by David Solie

Recommended by Liz Miller, president of Summit Place Financial Advisors, Summit, New Jersey

“It’s written by an advisor who understands how to have productive conversations with aging parents. He helps advisors take into account the respect that everyone wants to maintain, but don’t know how to communicate.”

4) The Millionaire Next Door, by Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko

Recommended by Rob Shick, branch manager at Baird, Portland, Oregon

"This book examines the traits and habits of wealthy people in America: hard work, perseverance, and self-discipline. While a fancy car or a big house provides the appearance of wealth, the book drives home the fact that wealth is what you accumulate, not what you spend. It is appropriately titled, because many wealthy people are living in very modest homes across the country, while others are broke and living in mansions."

5) How I Raised Myself from Failure to Success in Selling, by Frank Bettger

Recommended by Bill Militello, founder and CEO of Militello Capital, Leesburg, Virginia

"While most financial advisors are formerly educated and worked in apprenticeships to be investment managers, no such school exists to teach sales. Many smart advisors fail in business because they are brainwashed by an industry that is myopically focused on products and portfolios—hardly ever on new business development. [This book] communicates a practical guide on how to get new clients."

6) The New Rules of Sales and Service, by David Meerman Scott

Recommended by Jeffrey N. Tomaneng, financial advisor at Lincoln Investments, Boston

"This book forced me to consider how [clients] make buying decisions instead of telling how I should be using 'old school' interruption marketing techniques."

7) Ice to the Eskimos, by Jon Spoelstra

Recommended by David Lyon, CEO of Oranj, Chicago

"Jon Spoelstra was the only NBA front office executive ever traded for a player. He took his real-world experience in joining the New Jersey Nets and helped them market a product that the Nets thought no one wanted. As advisors, almost half of the investable assets are self-directed. Jon's insights provide advisors strategies on how to focus their business in the right areas, with the right messages and achieve big results."

8) Hug Your Customers, by Jack Mitchell

Recommended by Thais Piotrowski, managing director at Ameriprise, Boca Raton, Florida

"Jack Mitchell focuses on the simple principle for success: making clients feel loved, appreciated, and special. He stresses the importance of delivering spectacular client service, and explains how advisors can distinguish themselves. He also discusses the importance of helping clients understand what advisors are passionate about. Products can come and go, but experiences last. Delivering a superior experience can help build trust, loyalty, and stronger and lasting relationships."

9) Tested in the Trenches, by Ron Carson and Steve Sanduski

Recommended by Larry Rosenthal, financial advisor at Voya Financial, Manassas, Virginia

"I have found this book to be a great resource. It provided helpful insight on how to deliver a top-shelf client experience and a back-office procedure outline."

10) Atlas Shrugged, by Ayn Rand

Recommended by Robert Baglia, president of American Financial & Tax Strategies, New York

"Every adviser should read [this book] for greater insight into people, capitalism, free markets, the consequence of government meddling, self-reliance, and individual achievement—and what makes some businesses great and others mediocre."

11) The Tao of Pooh, by Benjamin Hoff

Recommended by Edward S. Blumenthal, executive vice president at Janney Montgomery Scott, Philadelphia

"This is a speedy read. While some advisors may see this as an intro to Eastern thought, it also is a perspective of how [advisors] have each of the classic A.A. Milne stories embedded in them. Some tend to lean toward one character than another, but striking a balance among all of the traits is paramount. Not too much of 'The sky is falling!' Eeyore, or kinetic Tigger. Owl doesn't really know everything, and Rabbit is always looking at what is coming next—never taking time to enjoy where he is! We all should strive to be Pooh: personally and professionally."

12)  No More Champagne, by David Lough

Recommended by Anthea Perkinson, advisor with Moneterey Associates, Pelham, New York

"Lough, a former member of the London Stock Exchange, has written a biography focused on Winston Churchill’s personal finances. The well-researched insights from his book will make the financial twists and turns of Churchill’s life, as recounted in his book, absolutely riveting." 



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