Marotta’s Tenets of Good Customer Service

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Marotta Wealth Management is an independent, comprehensive wealth management firm offering a complete range of investment management and financial planning services serving clients both locally in the Virginia area as well as across the country.

As fiduciaries, customer service is at the core of our work.

We aim to have transparent conversations with our clients and build long term relationships. When we accept a new client into our services, we see the relationship as a lifetime partnership and will continue to serve them for as long as we have together.

To help ensure high quality customer service, we have four tenets of quality at Marotta Wealth Management. Each of these tenets of quality help support our fiduciary principle to do whatever is in the best interest of our clients. The four tenets are in order:

Accuracy

First and foremost, we strive to be accurate in our analysis.

Clarity

After accuracy, we strive to be clear in our communication.

Empathy

After being accurate and clear, we strive to be empathetic to our listener.

Responsiveness

Last, we want to be quick to respond.

Our first goal is to be accurate. We want to get the right answer. We want to do the task the right way.

This means that when we design a new service, we do careful research, analysis, and peer reviews to ensure that we are approaching the problem the right way. We often write articles with our conclusions to further get the feedback from our colleagues in the financial planning field.

It also means that we don’t accept the status quo. Like when a “4% rule” was widely regarded, we determine what constituted a safe withdrawal rate, showed the inadequacy of the 4% rule, and found a methodology which provides more useful when advising clients. Or now, how it is popular among financial professionals to recommend traditional IRA deferrals when in reality Roth contributions and conversions often hold more valuable.

Our second goal is to be clear. We want the client to understand us. We want to say the right thing.

This is our second goal because if we have to make a sacrifice between being clear and being correct, we want to be correct. Some IRS rules that are just confusing. We should strive to be clear. But if accuracy means that we are a bit confusing, then it is better to be a bit confusing than to be clear but inaccurate.

Clarity is important. The financial industry is know for hidden fees, opaque marketing terms, and intimidating salesmen. We want everyone to be able to quickly know that we are the opposite of that. We have transparent fees which we talk about openly and plainly. We strive to be as clear and precise in our language as possible. We do not sugarcoat reality. We openly talk about how the markets are inherently volatile. We are fiduciaries; we hold ourselves to the highest principles.

Our third goal is to be empathetic. We want our words to speak to where the listener is now. We shouldn’t use jargon or abbreviations where common words are available. We should be sensitive to our client’s emotions.

This is our third goal because if we have to sacrifice between being clear and accurate and being empathetic, we should be clear and accurate. The best financial advisors save you from making big financial mistakes. We should strive to be empathetic to the client’s perspective, but if clarity and accuracy means we are a bit blunt, then it is better to be a bit blunt.

However, in all ways we should strive to design our reports, write our emails, and select our words to speak to this client. Sometimes that means opening our meetings by going over our analysis in detail so one client can fully partner with us in the design of their investment plan. Other times that means saving our analysis for the end of a meeting so that we can help another client with the concerns that are weighing heavier on them first.

Our fourth goal is to be responsive. We want to respond to clients quickly. We want clients to know that we are here to help.

This is our fourth goal because if we have to sacrifice between being clear, accurate, and empathetic or responsive, we should be clear, accurate, and empathetic. Speed is no excuse for being wrong, confusing, or rude. If time is necessary to craft a good response, then it is better for us to say “I will get back to you soon” and take the time we need.

These tenets of good customer service are taught to each of our employees, and they are baked into our firm culture. We pride ourselves as a bastion of customer service in the world. We hope that it shows.

Photo by Helena Hertz on Unsplash

Follow Megan Russell:

Chief Operating Officer

Megan Russell has worked with Marotta Wealth Management since 2005. She loves to find ways to make the complexities of financial planning accessible to everyone. Her most popular post: The Complete Guide to Your Washing Machine