Read it. Roll it. Hole it.

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As golf’s final Major for 2017, the PGA Championship, approached, memories of inspirational moments from years past were sparked. One of these “Major” moments came in the 1913 US Open with the most unlikely of heroes, Francis Ouimet, and his 10-year old Caddie, Eddie Lowery. After four rounds, Ouimet found himself tied with British greats, Harry Vardon and Ted Ray. He won in a playoff to the surprise and joy of spectators rooting for an American victor on American soil. In the movie “The Greatest Game Ever Played”, Lowery’s character quipped sage advice, however cheesy, at just the right moments to steady his man, Ouimet.

One moment in particular came close to the end with Ouimet needing to hole a challenging putt. Lowery knew it was makeable but saw the doubt in Ouimet’s face. To invoke confidence, he said “read it, roll it, hole it”. Ouimet did just that.

For Financial Advisors, the winds of change are swirling all around them from all directions: regulatory, robo management, compensation, product mix, account size. Perhaps now is the time to follow the counsel of Eddie Lowery and “Read it, Roll it, Hole it”.

“Read it”. Read your current situation. Measure what changes will affect you, your clients and your practice overall. Could there be negatives that affect how you invest for your clients? Could you be forced to give up relationships because they don’t meet corporate minimums? Will the Department of Labor fiduciary rule and your firm’s reaction to it influence future business practices and, subsequently, compensation? Could there be a loss of clients due to any of these forced changes and will there be pain as a result?

“Roll it”. Roll out a plan to investigate options. Is the distribution channel you exist in today the place to be going forward? Invest time researching other channels and firms. Carefully evaluate the pros and cons to reach a decision on any move. This process will help you commit with confidence to the final decision.

“Hole it”. Once all of your due diligence is completed, follow through with a well-developed plan to make changes you believe are in your best interest and the best interests of your family and clients. The confidence to make the putt was the difference-maker for Francis Ouimet. Read it, Roll it, Hole it can give you that confidence too.

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