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June 7. Interview with Gabriel Garcia, Pershing.

I recently attended INSITE 2018 put on by Pershing for success-minded advisors. Pershing set up a personal interview for me with Gabe Garcia, Managing Director of Advisor Solutions at Pershing. I wanted to understand how Pershing helps practices succeed, which I was corrected quickly that Pershing thinks in terms of delivering solutions to firms rather than practices.  I got it. And Gabe is right; a practice is just part of the firm. Gabe’s team assists firms by being a “strategic thought partner” helping firms become “preferred employers in their community.”

This lofty goal is delivered by a team of relationship managers with a firm having an assigned manager, but through matrix management having all of the diverse talent of the team available as needed. For example, Pershing helps set up networking communities such as study groups that develop their own agenda. If the agenda is about compensation then one resource may be appropriate, if it is about operations then another. As Gabe put it, “Pershing acts as a forcing function” for their client firms creating an environment for conscious decision making.

Gabe’s style is very hands on meeting with each of his 18 direct reports daily one-on-one when they are in the office. (I added the “in the office part” but maybe he meets by phone?) This is "Inclusion Behavior"... In any case, Gabe by having these one-on-one meetings demonstrates the style of leadership that permeates Pershing from what I could tell: Great leader-member exchange relationships (LMX). High quality LMX leads to great outcomes. (Charles Scharf: “You want to create a culture that is far more open.”  Lisa Dolly: We do things that “keeps us connected.” Jim Crowley: We believe in “transparency and accountability.”)

Everyone I interacted with at Pershing felt part of the team and also individually important to the whole. This is evidence of high quality LMX. (more on LMX HERE)

What are some of the deliverables from Gabe’s team?

  1. Assisting in creating integrated procedures for onboarding new employees for effective fast-starts.
  2. Business reviews: should your next hire be a COO rather than a marketer? What is your big problem and how to solve it in your way.
  3. Growth planning tools to manage to the next level if desired; facilitate discussion of strategies (Merge? Hire? Productivity?)
  4. Improvement in operations through education and training for efficiency and optimal use of resources.
  5. Business process assessment: how is the firm doing what needs doing (and then see #4 above).
  6. Help with performance management processes, job descriptions, career path design that fits the firm, discussion of firm culture.

And then our time was up. I was impressed.

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