Succession Planning: How to Partner With a Younger Advisor

May-December pairings may provoke the occasional snide look Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones, anyone? but for financial advisors trying to plan for retirement, they can be a romantic ideal.

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Comments (4)
As a "Younger Broker" I am looking for this kind of opportunity and they are not as prevelant as you make it sound. most older advisors are not willing to take any risk or release any equity to make it worth while for a guy like me to make a switch.

Posted by Joseph J | Tuesday, April 22 2014 at 12:33PM ET
I hear you. Same here. The older ones do not want to retire at all, and they think they can work forever.
Posted by rose s | Tuesday, April 22 2014 at 12:48PM ET
Joe and Rose,

I'm ready to talk to you. Here's my email.
Posted by L C | Tuesday, April 22 2014 at 5:58PM ET
My name is Michael Chindamo, Founder of Fautores Family Offices. One of our specializations is designing succession plans for Independent Registered Investment Advisors.

I will offer my perspective since I have a long history in this business.
First and foremost before even considering the succession of an Assets Under mangement Book, a practitioner needs to personally assess what they are really trying to do in the long run. This means a very clear analyses of personal life style and long-term goals. Secondly, industrial organizational assessments and personal sessions with a psychologist that is cross trained in I/O as well as independent RIA models is critical. At best most RIA's have only about 20% of the information that really require to analyize a true succession plan. Less than 10% even know the difference between succession and exit planning and transition.

Next- Those young planners that desire a partnership "equity". About all of those have a perception that the "partnership Equity" is of monetary value. Many do not realize two things: 1) Partnerships are not always on the upside nor a guarantee of positive equity. 2) The downside is that partnership may require a cash infusion and taking on the personal liability of things going wrong. Very very few young planners have the assets or resources to back up the responsibility.
Many also have a sense of entitlement. Very few have earned the respect that they think they deserve.

The best candidates for a succession are the "gift of God" type employee "successor" because that type has the desire for equity and is willing to take the risks and has the shoulders to back up the position. There are many other types of employees that can support a succession as well. But the first is the best. The best depending on the long-term aspirations of the founder. There are lots of metrics to this equation. All that require experienced professionals to vet out.

My best advice after 35+ years in this business is to do not drink the topical cool aid that exists in this business, but instead carefully vet out your self and what your options really are. You more than likely not exposed to the best people that can seriously help you through the process. The wirehouses advising on this subject equate to going to McDonalds for a gourmet meal.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me under no obligation. My email is or just call me at 407-740-5900 xt 101.
Posted by MICHAEL C | Saturday, April 26 2014 at 10:47AM ET
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