Focus 2019 Report – Live from the San Diego Convention Center!

Focus 2019 Report – Live from the San Diego Convention Center!

September 04, 2019
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Tracey and I recently had the opportunity to travel to San Diego to attend Focus 2019, the annual conference for LPL Financial Advisors. How big was it, you asked? LPL has around 17,000 affiliated advisors across the country – over 4,000 made the trip to the conference for 2 days of learning and networking.

First, the fun stuff. Saturday was arrival day for us. We stuck around our hotel and enjoyed the view, the breeze, and the low humidity. I was part of a group from LPL who signed up to run a half-marathon on Sunday, so we met for a very light happy hour that evening.

Sunday morning came fast and hard with a 3:45 am wake up call to make the trek to the starting line (Cabrillo National Monument) by 6:15 am. The race was very pleasant – running with 4,500 other crazies along the San Diego shoreline. At one point we had the bay on our right and the Pacific Ocean on our left. Conditions were perfect to break our 2-hour goal (I ran with another advisor from NYC). We were right on pace as my GPS ticked off 13.1 miles at 1:59 - with the finish line a quarter mile ahead. Apparently, everything is inflated in California.

Since we love spending time on the water, Tracey and I rented a small boat for a quick 2-hour harbor tour. The first hour was beautiful and relaxing, and then all heck broke loose. You can read about it here: San Diego Harbor cruise. I’m not actually retired, and the article reversed the number of people on each boat, but it’s otherwise accurate.

Hootie and the Blowfish still put on a great show, 25 years after the release of their hit debut.

On to the conference itself. I won’t bore you with the details, so here are the highlights:

  • The CEO knows my name. Yes, I was wearing a nametag, but as soon as we shook hands, he launched right into a discussion about my posts on our private LinkedIn group. That was pretty cool.
  • One benefit is the ability to visit with the home office employees who support our business. After 7 years on the team, it’s surprising how many people we know. That’s a nice connection to make.
  • Most valuable to me were breakout sessions led by other advisors. I was able to learn the stories of advisors from Indiana, Arkansas, and California. Each was unique but all are dedicated to serving their clients well. Exciting to gather ideas and bring them back to help you.

What about for you, my clients? There are a couple of neat things coming soon:

  • Texting – finally, within a few weeks, we will be able to communicate via text
  • New AccountView and finally a Mobile App – coming soon and looking sharp
  • Many other behind the scenes changes that will make it easier for us to serve you

All in all, LPL has doubled their spending on technology in the past two or three years. This investment is finally starting to pay dividends as the functionality of all the tools we use to serve you has improved and continues to improve monthly.

Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions or comments. Thank you for your business!