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Be the Advisor Your Colleague Wants You to Be

How to be a strategic team player in your wealth management firm.

Being a great advisor isn’t all about building the perfect portfolio, creating the simplest financial plan, or providing the best advice. 

Great advisors know it also means running a business and making decisions that will help that business grow and succeed over the long haul. 

There are some advisors who may choose to keep their business small because the “business” part of running an advisory firm isn’t what they enjoy. It’s the planning and the client relationships.

But for many other advisors, part of the thrill is the ability to grow an organization that makes a broad impact. These businesses can become the bedrock of a community.

Often, those advisors choose to build in a partnership track as an employee incentive, or they may even launch as a multi-advisor team from the start. 

And in cases where there are multiple partners in a firm, things can get messy if not every partner pulls their weight. That doesn’t mean everyone needs to be good at the same things, but it does mean that each partner needs to be a team player who can focus on the business and make proactive decisions that will generate growth. 

So, what does it mean for an advisor to be a team player? We think there are three primary attributes that make an advisor a well-respected colleague. 


As an advisor, you’re familiar with being accountable to many people and organizations. From one perspective, you have to be accountable as a fiduciary guide to your clients. They come to you for advice and expertise, and you have to satisfactorily provide those services for them if you want to retain them as clients for any length of time. 

There’s also the issue of the SEC and/or FINRA, depending on what type of firm you run. You’re accountable to them for the rules and regulations you have to abide by, and if you step outside those lines, you’ll quickly discover the true meaning of accountability. 

Outside of clients and regulators, though, you’re also accountable to the people within your firm. If you’re a partner and you have other business partners, you’re first accountable to each other. The business rises or falls based on each of you pushing each other forward, pulling others along when they need help, and making the business a priority in your life.

At Nitrogen, we operate by a set of nine core values that fuel how we work together. When it comes to our value of Accountability, we say “we’re a no-excuses, set-goals-to-hit-goals, high-performing team.” From day one, our CEO Aaron Klein has given each Nitro permission to use the phrase “I know you care about our success as much as I do, and that needs to be better, or you’ll screw up our company.”

When open and direct communication is welcomed into your culture, your colleague relationships become about winning together, and not about politics or blame. 


Being committed to your business and accountable to your business partners is a good start to being the advisor your colleagues want and need you to be, but there’s more.

One of the most important traits you can have is to be positive in your work and when interacting with others. 

People simply enjoy being around positive people. From a business perspective, there’s an argument to be made that by being positive with others you can positively influence your bottom line. 

But positivity also has other benefits. As an entrepreneur and business owner, there will always be moments when the wrong decision is made or you fail at something. 

The ability to adopt and maintain a positive mindset throughout the challenges of entrepreneurial life can be the difference between allowing problems to overcome you, your business, and your relationship with a business partner—or be the difference you need to move beyond those challenges and succeed.

When you approach colleagues with the level of delight you have with clients, clients pick up on the collaborative nature of your firm. That keeps work fun, and the cycle continues.


Running a business, whether alone or with a partner, involves periods of high stress. Approaching challenges with a positive mindset is one way to deal with that high stress.

The other way to be a better advisory firm business owner? Treat everyone, especially your clients and business partners, with respect at all times. 

There are many reasons why business partnerships can fail, and one is a lack of respect for what a partner brings to a business. Respectfulness can present itself in many different ways, but actively listening to each other and reacting with kindness in any situation will go a long way to making you the type of team player that people want to continue to do business with.

At Nitrogen, we aim to be a diverse set of world-changers who treat others the way we want to be treated. We say, “‘Treating others the way we want to be treated’ means we have empathy for our teammates and our customers. We always do our best to support their success. We communicate with kindness, and we always seek to be authentic and genuine.”

3 More Ways to Be a Better Business Partner

Being a better advisor for your business partner doesn’t end with knowing how to be a team player. 

You also need to know how to keep your focus on your business so you can make proactive decisions to better your firm. That type of focus requires that you avoid getting stuck in day-to-day issues so you can guide your business, instead of allowing your business to guide you.

Here are three more quick ideas for how to do that well.  

Bringing in New Business (The Easy Way)

We’ll keep this simple: cold calling is out. In today’s digital world, you have to make it easy for people to learn about what you do and why you’re a good fit for them. Then, you have to make it easy for them to reach out. One way to make it easier for someone to contact you is to provide them with immediate value right away.

Advisors are finding success with tactics like embedding their Nitrogen Lead Generation Questionnaire on their website. Instead of asking a prospect to reach out to schedule a first meeting, the Questionnaire instead gives an investor a peek into their risk tolerance right away. There’s nothing like inciting curiosity with the five most powerful words in fintech: What is Your Risk Number®?

It’s one simple way to keep your business development practices moving, even without you spending direct time on them. 

Getting a Second Opinion

It’s not always easy to get everyone on the same page within your team. For too many teams, roadblocks can send relationships into a tailspin or productivity into the tank. 

Getting a second opinion for portfolio construction or investment recommendations, though, doesn’t have to negatively impact your relationship with your partner.

At Nitrogen we built a new service offering into helping advisors get second opinions, without the hassle, so they can keep moving with their day and manage their business confidently.

Share Everything

When you’re part of a team, you’ve got to be good at sharing. In this case, we mean sharing data about clients, portfolios, and other information critical to providing only the best in client service to the investors your firm serves. 

The technology your team uses will play a big role in how effectively your team can work together and be the types of team players you want everyone to be. Here’s what Nitrogen does to make sharing information between advisors easy.

Grow your advisory business with the Nitrogen prospecting playbook. Click here to learn how to make the Risk Number a part of your sales process.



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