How Paraplanners Can Help You Free Up More Time
Note: This blog is third in our series on paraplanners. If you haven’t already read our first two, be sure to check them out!
What’s your time worth to you?
In 2019, the truth is that most of us are time poor. This is especially true if you’re running your own business in addition to running your family! Some days, it might feel like you manage just the bare minimum of what you need to do to reach your goals…simply because you don’t have time.
There’s not enough energy for the big picture stuff, for planning ahead, for finding ways to help your business grow.
If you’re like most small business owners, one BIG way to grow is by attracting more clients. After all, that’s what allows you to expand your business. But the problem is that you and your employees have to wear multiple hats. And that really eats away at your time, especially when it comes to complex financial planning and research.
Plus, you may not feel super confident in your own knowledge of these areas—so finding the right strategy to help you move forward isn’t always easy.
Should you hire a paraplanner?
But wait—what if you had someone who was literally trained to do these things? Someone who could allow you to focus your energy elsewhere?
Well, that’s where a paraplanner can help! Paraplanners are a relatively new career option, starting to pop up within just the last 20 years or so. But the concept of paraplanning has so many benefits that it’s gaining rapid industry traction.
According to a study by Canada Life research, 49% of advising companies have a paraplanner on staff. Plus, an additional 30% plan to hire a paraplanner in the future.
So, what does a paraplanner do?
A paraplanner is a person who helps you tackle the financial side of your business. They’re responsible for doing research and financial analysis, all while giving you (and your other employees!) more time to do what you do best.
In other words, you get to stop spending time in front of your computer when you don’t have to! Instead, let a paraplanner comb through the financial and research-related work, while you spend more time face to face with clients.
At the end of the day, a good paraplanner is an investment in your business…and a way to literally give yourself more time in the day.
How can working with a paraplanner free up your time?
Think of it this way: you (and the other members of your team) probably need to be on the more front-of-house, entrepreneurial side of things. Your job is to focus on the big picture, how to develop and improve the company as a whole, and what direction you want to move things in the future.
And you do this by connecting with your clients—not by writing reports or looking through compliance documents. Because after all, those skills simply aren’t your strengths.
For your paraplanner, on the other hand, these skills are their strengths! A paraplanner acts as your behind-the-scenes hero and helper, supporting you exactly where you need it most. In their role, they’re very much interested in the quantitative, analytical details, and doing the research that you need in order to move forward.
Essentially, you share the details and direction of your “big picture” plans with your paraplanner, and they’ll do the research on how to make it happen. Backed by their advice, you can decide whether you need to keep on the current path or take a different course.
In addition, note that paraplanners can really help you save time if your business does any kind of client consulting. With consulting, paraplanners don’t just play a background, supportive role. They can also help you shave off time preparing for client meetings.
Since paraplanners gather the client’s recommendations, they can also prep documents on the front end. This allows you to focus on building that crucial relationship instead. Following the meeting, they’re also a great resource for the client’s follow-up questions. Questions about business advice can be sent to you, while research questions go directly to your paraplanner.
Essentially, a paraplanner pulls some of the work off of you, giving you more breathing room to tackle those “big picture” plans.
What tasks can paraplanners take off of you?
Your paraplanner’s role really depends on your business’s needs. For example, they may be a little more focused on your company’s financial modeling and reports. Or they may be responsible for creating research-backed recommendations for clients.
Here are a few of the paraplanner tasks that can buy you more time:
Tackling research and analytical questions
Creating financial modeling
Creating client plans
Preparing crucial reports
Acting as the first line for document compliance and file checking
Making cashflow reports
Creating Client-facing financial recommendations
Creating quotes for administrative functions
In addition to these, don’t forget that you can also find and hire a paraplanner who specializes in very targeted areas. Seeking specific paraplanner qualifications ensures you’re getting more bang for your buck, depending on your company’s niche. All you need to do is hire someone with the extra skills to free up even more of your time.
More Time and Less Stress
As mentioned above, paraplanners take care of the analytical part of the process for you, giving you more time to do what matters. In other words: no more no more teaching yourself compliance and financial strategies in order to do your own research!
But here’s an added bonus: many people find it much less stressful having someone who knows the ins and outs of finance and analytics on board. Paraplanners are a crucial knowledge resource, someone you can seek out for specific advice without worrying about finding it yourself.
And less stress? Well, that frees you up to see clients, develop powerful relationships, and focus on the growth of your business—instead of feeling bogged down by the little details.
If this sounds like something you need, we definitely encourage you to lean on the experience of a financial planner!
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