Cover art for podcast The Agile Financial Planner

The Agile Financial Planner

18 EpisodesProduced by Roger WhitneyWebsite

In the Agile Financial Planner podcast, Roger Whitney, CFP®, CIMA®, CPWA®, RMA®, AIF® helps financial advisors build and grow the practices of their dreams. Whether you are trying to grow, scale, or even start a financial planning practice, you can build a practice that serves you and your family, w… read more


SMART Sprints: A Tool for Client Accountability

Keeping up with client accountability can be tricky. Sometimes they just don’t follow through. Have you ever left a client meeting and wondered if they were going to bother to follow up with your recommendations? Part of the agile planning process is to hold the client accountable. I use SMART Sprints as a tool to help hold my clients accountable. Find out what Smart Sprints are and how they help me further my clients’ goals and hold them accountable on this episode of Financial Planner Freedom. 

Outline of This Episode
  • [1:22] Pierre asks if I have found a good financial planner project management tool or
  • [7:36] Smart sprints help the client know what the next step is
  • [12:20] What are examples of smart sprints
Do I use a project management tool to work with my clients?

I have a listener question from Pierre in South America. He asks if I have found a good financial planner project management tool or system for collaborative planning with clients. I have used Basecamp, Trello, and I currently use Asana to collaborate with my team. The project can be as simple or as complex as needed with these tools. They help the team know where things are in the process and they keep the flow moving. I love using Asana with my team. However, I don’t use a project management tool with my clients. Listen in to find out why!

Client accountability is part of the agile planning process

By now you know that the agile planning process is an integral part of my financial planning practice. I’ve discussed why agile planning is important and how we take on a project manager role with clients. Today I describe how I use SMART Sprints to help with client accountability and to help them stay on top of their goals. I never leave a meeting without clear instructions on how the client can take the next step forward. 

What is a SMART Sprint?

I always end a client meeting by leaving my clients an action plan to take. They know who is doing what and by when and their action plan is labeled a SMART sprint. SMART is an acronym used in goal setting.

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Relevant
  • Time-bound

The sprint aspect means that their goal is something they can act upon quickly and not something drawn out over years. We use SMART Sprints to help drive the project forward and to maintain client accountability. 

What are examples of SMART Sprints?

Since retirement is not only a huge financial change but a huge life change, I take a holistic approach to financial planning. I don’t just offer financial advice. In my practice, I help clients set goals in 4 areas: health, professional, finance, and relationships. For example: if a client is wondering how they will spend 24/7 with their spouse for the next 30 years after working separate careers 40 hours or more a week, then a SMART Sprint goal may be to set up a date night once a week. What tools do you use to help your clients stay accountable?

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