5 New Year’s Resolutions for Financial Advisors



It’s time once more to start thinking about New Year’s resolutions. People frequently set goals for personal growth, focusing on ways to improve their physical and mental well-being, such as eating healthier, exercising more, or getting more involved in the community. But what about making New Year’s resolutions for your business?

Setting and achieving goals while living through a pandemic can be challenging, but you can still work toward making 2022 your best year yet. Check out our list of suggested New Year’s resolutions for financial advisors; they may help you start the year on the right foot. Consider adopting one—or maybe all five!

1) Take Time to Make Time for Yourself

As we head into 2022, schedule regular restorative time first—even if it’s an occasional day off, long weekend, or staycation. By making your personal time a priority, you’ll see two important benefits:

  • You’ll have time and experiences to look forward to right off the bat.

  • You’ll be more likely to take time away from the office on a regular basis. This will help you stay focused and motivated longer—and reduce the risk of getting burned out.

2) Set Goals and Create a Plan

If you’re not sure exactly where you’re headed, it’s hard to find the motivation to reach that destination. Or, in the words of the late Yogi Berra, “If you don’t know where you’re going, you might end up somewhere else.” To help ensure that you’re making progress toward your goals throughout 2022, schedule time to think about the big picture and create a business plan.

Draft a simple, one-page business plan for the coming year that focuses on activities and goals that are most important to you and your team. This is an invaluable exercise for setting goals at an advisory firm. Next, regularly revisit this document to review and revise it, as well as to track your progress. You may want to consider creating an electronic calendar alert to remind you to do this once per month or every quarter—or you may want to schedule meetings with colleagues and employees to do this as a group.

3) Let Go and Watch Them Grow

You’ve selected smart, capable professionals to support your work and embody your firm’s values. And during the pandemic, you’ve probably learned about the hidden talents of many team members. As you think about New Year’s resolutions for your business, consider embracing 2022 as the year you enable your staff to grow and come into their own.

What’s the best way to do this? Give them greater autonomy. Delegate tasks that may be better suited to your staff’s expertise or ones they’ve expressed an interest in spearheading.
Once you delegate, let them go! They may stumble or fail, but with your support and encouragement, they’ll learn and grow through the experience. By the end of the year, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to see how they’re flourishing—and how much happier you and your employees are as a result.

4) Learn More by Reading More

You don’t need to go back to school or sign up for a new designation to continuously learn
about your clients, industry trends, leadership, or business growth. You just need to read habitually. Here are a few tips to help you integrate more reading into your lifestyle.

Keep a running list of books you want to read in 2022. To begin, consider the following list of books—reflecting a mix of business topics, history, social welfare, and personal interests—that some Commonwealth leaders are reading:

If you find a specific article or book intriguing, keep up the momentum. Read additional
articles or books by the author or dig deeper into the topic by reading other authors’ points of view. To help make pertinent, interesting reading readily accessible, subscribe to a news aggregator to pull articles from your preferred news sources. And be sure to dedicate a specific time every week for reading to keep yourself accountable.

5) Have Fun!

Our list of New Year’s resolutions for financial advisors wouldn’t be complete without this
one. It’s all too easy for you and your staff to become engrossed in the day-to-day demands of the firm—especially considering the stress and pressures brought on by the pandemic. But it’s important to take periodic breaks that promote your company culture. This may include an outdoor or virtual get-together, or a volunteer or other activity that you and your team find fun and worthwhile.

In addition to these planned events, engage in fun every week. Use this time to relax, laugh, and enjoy one another’s company. Here are a few activities Commonwealth employees have appreciated that you can adopt, even in a virtual environment:

  • Conduct taste tests. Try five different energy drinks, power bars, or types of chocolate. Have your team vote on which is your firm’s favorite.

  • Share one fun fact about yourselves, such as a favorite vacation, memory from college, formative experience, or a bit about your families.

  • Give kudos to your partners and employees. Share a case of superb customer service, an example of an employee’s critical-thinking skills, or a story of a colleague’s kindness. Consider taking turns each week to sing one another’s praises, whether during a meeting or in written communication.

  • Volunteer as a group at a local nonprofit (e.g., an animal shelter or food pantry). Feel good while you do good!

Making a resolution (and sticking with it!) is a great step toward achieving a goal or improving your life. But it’s just as important to focus on your business as it is your personal life. Adopting one—or maybe all—of these New Year’s resolutions for financial advisors can put you and those you work with on a better path to happiness and success!

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in December 2019, but we’ve updated it to
bring you more relevant and timely information.