In this episode of “Around the Table,” the topic is the difference between diversity and inclusion. LPL leaders and advisors talk about their definitions of the two concepts and how integrating both into their practices helps them connect with clients and prospects from a variety of backgrounds and perspectives.
For one advisor, simply forgoing a suit and tie in day-to-day interactions with clients sets a more comfortable tone. The important thing, as another advisor points out, is that an advisor’s business should understand and represent the people it serves.
Watch the complete episode to gain more perspectives on how you can use diversity and inclusion to better serve your clients ─ and possibly reach new ones.
You can also learn about some of the things we’re doing at LPL to create a more diverse, inclusive culture for our advisors and employees.
Kathleen Zemaitis: Some people don't quite know the difference between diversity and inclusion is. So how would you kind of describe the difference between diversity and inclusion, Lee?
Lee Bethel: If I was thinking about diversity, I'm thinking at looking at our society as a whole. And when you look at it now, it's made of up of so many different ethnic groups, a variety of different ethnic groups, and we all kind of know who those are. But then I think the inclusion part then comes in, and part for me in serving that community and then embracing it so that an organization such as an LPL, if we have a very inclusive and diverse advisor base, we're able to then to serve the many different communities with individuals who are like them.
Wes Garner: Yeah, and we feel to have a sense ... To have a successful business, we really need to build a community and a sense of community and really just match our markets. Our business should represent the markets and the people that we serve.
Jason Valle: But I think those people that come in need to feel comfortable with whatever it is that you're presenting. A lot of times there's a misconception that people, because they didn't grow up learning how financial systems work and how to balance checkbooks, doesn't mean they don't want to learn.
Marci Bair: Right.
Jason Valle: So I think a lot of times engaging them and making sure they're comfortable in their environment. In my practice, for example, I'm wearing a suit today, but I never wear a suit because people tell me, "The only time I ever see suits is when I have to go to court or when I have to go to a funeral." So they don't feel comfortable, so you have to make sure whoever's in front of you feels comfortable and wants to sit down and do business with you, and then they'll open up.
Lauren Taylor: And I think as we're all looking to try to bring in the younger generation of both advisors and investors we have to understand how much that generation and my generation, we appreciate advisors and working with businesses who are inclusive. So it's imperative for every advisor, not even if you're not a part of an underserved demographic, to really take that into account in your practice.
Lee Bethel: I think there's probably a time, and it's probably already coming in many areas, where the individuals who are coming to seek out of services are going to be asking about our diversity. [crosstalk] And is it represented on our staff? Is it represented in the companies that we represent? So it's going to be very, very critical that that's included.