Jennifer James: Recognizing and Responding to Change

August 2002
Journal of Financial Planning;Aug2002, Vol. 15 Issue 8, p16
Academic Journal
This article discusses the ideas of cultural anthropologist Jennifer James on change and how financial planners can respond to it. In the old days according to James, access to information was the province of planners. Now, everything is available on the Internet. Clients do not want a personal relationship with their planner. Instead they want to bond with their financial planners. James also stated, that her clients do not think that percentage deal is a good deal. And it is not that people are not willing to pay more. People are just afraid of fees that are too low or even of no-load planning and products. They think they are going to get a 16-year-old day trader. James also believe that too often, planners will say that clients can, will and must fit into one of the five asset allocation models. But a client never want to hear that. They want to be treated in a customized way. James also offer an interesting example of adaptive leadership to eliminate tone deafness, the U.S. Army. In 1973, they lost the draft and knew they would have to provide real incentives for enlisting. So they changed their entire leadership program, focusing on adaptive management, flexibility, international citizenship, self-esteem, teamwork, ethics and zero tolerance for racism. And they have created a highly skilled workforce that is multi-ethnic and totally inclusive of both genders. They made change work for them


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