Seven Questions with Tony Sirianni: Richard Frick of Gladstone Wealth Group
AdvisorHub’s CEO Tony Sirianni sat down with Richard Frick of Gladstone Wealth Group, and talked about the industry. Tony sits with established leaders of the largest firms, as well as up and coming disruptors, and asks them more or less the same questions, so Advisors can get a sense of how each firm addresses the same issues from different perspectives. Taken together, they are a very interesting collection of influential points of view, and display the diversity of opinions and conclusions in Wealth Management today. You may even get to know these industry leaders on a more personal level.
Q: Why did you get into the wealth management business?
Two reasons, first it was a way I felt I could help people invest their money and prepare for their future. Second, I grew up in a competitive environment and the financial markets and Wall St. to me were the closest resemblance of that competition.
Q: In looking at the changes over the last 15 years, which, in your opinion, have been the most damaging to the wealth management business? Conversely, what have been the most exciting and positive?
The most damaging has been the market correction of 08/09, but it has also been the most exciting. We all know why it was damaging, but the excitement comes out the other side. Firms lost their focus and as a result imploded and that caused them not to care about their employees anymore, they were so absorbed in themselves that they lost their culture. The most exciting is eventually some of us have already made the change and have taken the chance to build something better, where people care and support each other and are building a new brand and culture. #whywouldyoustay
Q: How has technology advanced this industry?
Technology has disrupted Wall St. just like other businesses. In the 90’s you needed the large firms for a platform. It was closed architecture and without those firms providing you access to their systems you could not do business. Today, the best technology is mobile and you can choose what you would like to use. The relevance of the large in-house technology platform is becoming obsolete.
Q: How has your company adapted to address the rapidly changing wealth management landscape?
We have come up with new ideas and platforms on how to affiliate with us. You can have the simplest version or the most complex…it depends on the level of partnership and or service you are looking for. We are constantly thinking of ways to enhance the advisor and client experience.
Q: What part of the advisor business will never change?
It is relationship based. No matter how technology evolves, clients need advice, not everyone in a financial expert and in the end people want to work with someone that they trust and have a relationship with. Why do clients follow advisors when they change firms…it a relationship business.
Q: What three things differentiate your company from the competition?
- We are a firm built by advisors for advisors
- You are independent and own your own business, but have Gladstone to help you grow and build it.
- We have put together a leadership team that compliments each other and this will let us grow faster than others and that benefits the advisor both in the near term and long term.
Q: What advice would you give to someone just entering the wealth management business?
Put your head down and work as hard as you can for the next five years and don’t look up and you will have a business for the rest of your life.
Q: What are your interests and hobbies outside of your day job?
Traveling, sports, beach, watching my kids play sports.