By Suzanne Patrick-Lawrence
Financial advisors are often the ones we go to when we reach a life milestone, face an important decision, or realize we need to plan for the future. They are there to guide you through the process of identifying your goals and securing your financial future. That’s what they do best. But what about their financial future? What about the business and the clients they’ve put their heart and soul into? Who do they turn to when they need help?
Those are the questions that plagued me as I spent more and more time working with financial advisors and hearing their stories while working in marketing and relationship management for various companies. I decided to do something about it, and that’s how I ended up with a fulfilling career advising financial advisors.
Let’s back up a bit first. Fresh out of California State University, Los Angeles, with a degree in journalism, public relations, and communications, I started working in marketing and communications. For 11 years, I worked for various firms in many different industries, primarily financial services and government. I provided marketing and educational materials for broker-dealers, global institutional investment firms, mutual fund companies, RIAs, CFPs, CPAs and investment advisors.
Along the way, I had plenty of opportunities to get to know financial advisors and understand their journey. The decision to be an advocate for them developed naturally from these relationships, and in 2001, I founded Advisor Business Solutions to help them prepare for their future in a way that makes them feel proud of their careers, lifestyle accomplishments and the legacy of their firm.
Almost 20 years later, I still consider it a privilege to help financial advisors prepare for one of their most important transitions, something they have helped countless clients do throughout their careers: leaving their business behind and entering retirement or beginning their next exciting chapter in life.
I spend my days helping clients create a customized plan for the future growth of their firm, whether that’s matching them with a suitable buyer who holds the same values as them, searching for like-minded planning partners or experienced staff to support their work, finding new solutions to enhance their team efficiency, or increasing their brand awareness. And since change is hard on everyone, I also guide them through the often conflicting emotions and thoughts that surround the idea of exiting their practice or planning for the seamless transition of their firm towards the future.
We do not subscribe to one-size-fits-all strategies when it comes to our business consulting, succession planning, buy/sell matchmaking, staff recruiting or digital marketing strategies. Our advisors know they can trust us with their unique needs.
The Best Part
The best part of my job is the relationships I form with my clients, most are for numerous years in both good and challenging times. The second best part (although not far behind the first) is seeing my clients happy and thriving when the plans and processes we provide bring them a positive outcome. When clients go from stuck, unhappy, or stressed out to excited about their future, I am just as thrilled as they are. My motivation to work hard every day for my clients comes down to this: I get to help people who do important work for others. It brings me joy to help advisors create the most out of their business and lifestyle just as they joyfully help their clients make the most of their lives.
Is This What You Need?
If you are a financial professional who is ready to take your business plan to the next level and set up your future for success, we are here for you. Take the first step and reach out to Advisor Business Solutions by emailing slawrence@
Suzanne Lawrence is president and CEO of Advisor Business Solutions. She is a communications and business planning specialist with over 20 years of experience developing business and marketing strategies for financial services, global corporations, government agencies, nonprofits, and small businesses. She is passionate about working with financial advisor practices seeking guidance, support, and structure to position their firms for a successful transition. To learn more about Suzanne, connect with her on LinkedIn.