The VIP Forum held its annual executive meeting in Europe, where senior wealth management executives from across Great Britain, France, and Germany discussed challenges and solutions to boosting sales effectiveness.  In fact, wealth managers worldwide have aggressive goals.  A recent VIP Forum survey shows that most firms are expecting nearly 15% year-over-year revenue growth in 2010 – higher growth than during the 2007 peak.  The question on everyone’s mind continues to be how to grow the business in a volatile environment with tepid prospects for organic growth.

The VIP Forum’s Executive Advisor, Robert Reed, led the meeting by discussing key characteristics of the post-crisis client in Europe.  Members shared stories describing how clients remain distrustful of financial institutions and want more guidance to achieve their financial goals. 

However, the financial crisis created a problem: 65% of clients believe they did not receive value from their advisors for fees charged.  Clients’ skepticism of the wealth management value proposition presents a strong headwind for wealth managers to achieve their revenue goals.  The Forum shared three proven ways to reignite the revenue growth engine, including  maximizing advisors’ capacity for sales and service, applying engagement competencies in all client interactions, and leveraging behavioral finance to engage the skeptical client.

Throughout the day, several discussions provided interesting insights, including:

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