VOL. 132 | NO. 184 | Friday, September 15, 2017
Strategic Financial Partners In Growth Mode
By Andy Meek
Strategic Financial Partners president Russ VanderSteeg has been thinking about the future of his company and how to bring more younger financial advisers into an industry that has been going gray fast for at least a few years now.
He spent some time in California several years ago getting a look at some of the modern, hip, amenity-rich offices focused on younger talent there, and he came away with insight that has at least partly informed his own company’s relocation to a new office space.
Strategic Financial Partners is in growth mode. VanderSteeg has led the Memphis-based firm, which provides services like wealth management and retirement planning, for 20 years, and he’s especially focused these days on the next generation of advisers. That’s one reason the firm is in the process of moving from 795 Ridge Lake Blvd. to 949 Shady Grove Road, where it will get to be in a space VanderSteeg describes as “more modern, efficient and collaborative.”
The plan they’re working toward is to vacate the current space Nov. 3 to be ready to open in the Shady Grove office Nov. 6.
“When we moved into this building 14 years ago, we were the first tenant in the building, and we had the opportunity to really build things out based on what our needs were then,” he said. “We work a lot in teams. We do a lot of joint work as an organization. We’re really structuring the new space with all of that in mind. It’s always exciting moving into a new space. It’s exciting to be able to redesign something based on really more of a current business setting.”
And just in time, too, since the firm has been expanding this year, is planning to bring on more advisers before the year is out and wants to make the firm more of a place where younger advisers can come build a career in the future.
New hires this year so far include Patrick Crowley, who joined the firm to lead its Wealth Strategies initiative.
“As the regulatory landscape becomes more and more complex, clients’ questions are increasingly focused on planning and strategy,” Crowley said. “We’re prepared to help clients navigate this landscape to realize the most personal financial benefit possible from their careers and businesses. The new Wealth Strategies initiative can help by applying advanced consultation in collaboration with clients and their trusted financial advisers.”
Going forward, VanderSteeg estimated the firm will bring on another six new advisers in its Memphis office, which he said serves as “the hub to the whole organization” – by the end of the year. Along with its Memphis presence, the organization has offices in Franklin and Knoxville, Tennessee; Little Rock, Arkansas; and Birmingham, Alabama.
And across the whole firm, it’s looking to bring on another 35 new advisers at the moment. It also started an affiliation with Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. in July 2016.
“There’s a lot of great things going on,” VanderSteeg said. “We feel this is a real opportunity for us to bring some new talent into the business.”
He added he’s been in the business for 28 years and is concerned that not enough young advisers are entering the field.
“The average age of financial advisers is an ever-increasing number, in terms of people being in their mid-50s to 60s. One of the strategies and visions and part of the reason we’re excited about this move and going to a much more modern, collaborative type of design, is we want to bring a new amount of (certified financial planners) into the business – people that want to be financial advisers that are finance majors in college today, that are wanting to become financial advisers, CFPs in the future.”