As a financial advisor with years of experience and a specialization in retirement planning, Gary Scheer has served as a resource for many looking for more information on the industry. While there is certainly a multitude of specialists in the space, Gary Scheer notes that the average individual seeking consultation is not necessarily aware of what to look for when seeking one out. In this article, Gary Scheer lists a few qualities of a financial specialist as well as questions that can be asked to verify one’s legitimacy.
One of the hallmark signs of a specialist is that they can focus on you and your issues. Gary Scheer notes that the best way to ascertain one’s focus is to spend some time with them and take note of their patterns. For example, if you have a conversation with a proposed specialist and you can’t get a word in, it’s likely that you are not working with a true expert. Any specialist worth their salt knows that they should not do much more than 10% of the talking but will also be able to prove their credibility via the content of their end of the conversation. Gary Scheer recommends making sure that a specialist, in conversation, is guiding you to speak about your needs and concerns rather than only focusing on what they can do. It is the responsibility of a specialist to help you determine your needs and their urgency in a clear and easily understandable manner.
Another key sign of a specialist is that they can and do assist people just like you. For example, if you have more than $1 million to your name, you have a list of issues that are unique. A specialist, in your eyes, would be someone that has the experience and the skills to service someone like you. To come to these conclusions, an individual looking for a specialist will need to ask a few key questions. For example, you will want to ask to know their specialty, see a sample zero estate-tax plan, and inquire what percentage of an advisor’s clients fit your demographic. You will also want to know the profile of their ideal client and how much an advisor has saved clients through financial planning. There are many specialists out there, but the term “specialist” is always going to be relative to what your needs and goals are both currently and moving forward.
Gary Scheer acknowledges that specialists are not only great at what they do, but they are also acknowledged all-stars within their profession. It is important to note that there is a distinction between even a major leaguer and an all-star. While a major leaguer may be great at advising and have proof to back it up, an all-star can be identified as an advisor that is published and acts as a professional resource to their peers. When trying to figure out if an advisor is an all-star you will want to ask a few important questions. For example, you will want to know where their articles have been published, if they have any books, and if they have any notable radio, podcast, or television appearances to date.