With eight clients and $15 million under management, one fledgling New York-based asset manager acutely knows the value each client carries for the firm. And yet, Ideal Asset Management CEO Rahul Shah says he is willing to risk challenging his clients on asset allocations and holdings. Shah says the bond between advisor and client is strengthened best through proven performance.

It's a lesson Shah was forced to learn: He co-founded the firm in October 2007, unaware of the impending economic and financial crisis. "The clients that we have, I feel we guided them through the financial crisis," Shah says. He recounts to Money Management Executive his experiences listening to clients, the push-and-pull of asset allocation and building up a firm from scratch.

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