Cambridge Investment Research may not be getting all of its affiliates to sign up for succession plan assistance, but a lot of its biggest affiliates are taking the plunge.
Maybe 5% of the maverick firm's advisors have filled out the paperwork to smooth any emergency transition of clients and business to a designated successor and another 2% are in the pipeline.
However, these are top producers, representing about 30% of Cambridge production between them.
The program makes financing available for a junior advisor to buy into the business if a principal dies or is otherwise incapacitated, ensuring a more-or-less efficient transition.
In theory, these funds may also be used some day to allow Cambridge reps to sell their practice when they retire.
CEO Eric Schwartz has kicked in $9 million of his own cash to prime the pump.
The adoption rate among Cambridge stars is striking.
Maybe this is simply a matter of the most successful advisors having the luxury to think about the next generation. Or maybe successful advisors are simply older and more aware of their mortality.
Either way, this looks like a best practice that other advisors -- and their affiliated firms -- can do well to follow.