With that in mind, it’s important to remember that just because you are going independent, doesn’t mean that you have to go it alone. Rather than trying to manage all the challenges that can come with flying solo, maybe you should find a trusted and skilled co-pilot instead to help you navigate through the transition process and beyond.
One way to do this is to align yourself with a branch office, which is the path I chose when I decided to leave Edward Jones. After doing significant research and due diligence, I joined up with Cooper McManus, a registered independent advisor based in Orange County, California. Cooper McManus is also an office of supervisory jurisdiction (OSJ with Securities America, one of the nation’s largest independent broker/dealers, member FINRA / SIPC). Bottom line: they help my firm, Lindsey and Lindsey Wealth Management, manage compliance and provide consulting and other business services to my firm and the other independent advisors in their network. This community of advisors shares a commitment to exceptional, professional, knowledgeable and values-driven service.
Once an advisor leaves the captive environment for an independent setting, he or she faces the considerable challenge of making sure every detail—from the biggest to the smallest—is being handled properly. This includes things easily taken for granted, such as buying office furniture, making sure the bathrooms are clean and that coffee is ordered for the coffee machine. But as this white paper from Securities America points out, joining a branch office can help advisors alleviate a significant amount of the financial and organizational pressure that comes with going independent.
The benefits of aligning with a branch office such as Cooper McManus include reducing overhead costs with a shared location (if desired), training for you and your staff, help with building your brand and giving you access to a built-in succession plan.
This latter point, having a succession plan in place, is the most significant reason that I chose to join Cooper McManus since I want to eventually hand my practice over to my daughter when I retire. Having a branch office to make sure that this eventual transition will be made smoothly gives me peace of mind knowing that my legacy and my clients will be secure once I do decide to hand over the reigns.