Seven Questions with Tony Sirianni: Rogge Dunn Group’s Rogge Dunn
AdvisorHub’s CEO Tony Sirianni sat down with Rogge Dunn, Managing Partner at Rogge Dunn Group, and talked about the industry. Tony sits with established leaders of the largest firms, as well as up and coming disruptors, and asks them more or less the same questions, so Advisors can get a sense of how each firm addresses the same issues from different perspectives. Taken together, they are a very interesting collection of influential points of view, and display the diversity of opinions and conclusions in Wealth Management today. You may even get to know these industry leaders on a more personal level.
Why did you get into the wealth management business?
I began representing financial advisors, RIAs and firms in the financial industry because they are some of the most intelligent, creative and interesting people you’ll ever meet.
In looking at the changes over the last 15 years, which, in your opinion, have been the most damaging to the wealth management business? Conversely, what have been the most exciting and positive?
The constant war of words and vicious attacks on firms and FAs from politicians and commentators looking to score political points. While the financial industry has its share of bad apples — just like any industry — the constant drum beat against the industry has hurt the reputation of wealth management industry.
The most exciting development in the wealth management business are the high-tech tools, which have improved research, analysis and transparency.
How has technology advanced this industry?
Now it’s easier for clients to educate themselves on risks, products and pricing. Clients can quickly verify an FA’s advice and comparison shop. Broker Check, Yelp, blogs and the internet can expose bad advice and poor service. FAs’ performance and customer service are no longer based on hard to access things like word of mouth. FAs’ performance and customer service are now front and center for everyone to find on the internet in real time.
How has your company adapted to address the rapidly changing wealth management landscape?
We use readily available free resources. Every month we review FINRA’s and the SEC’s websites to analyze enforcement actions taken by the government. We read AdvisorHub each day to see who’s moving, what firms are paying and learn what enforcement actions firms are pursuing and what policies they are enacting. This keeps us informed on new and cutting-edge issues in the industry.
What part of the advisor business will never change?
It’s fundamentally a relationship and trust driven business. And, the need to always be vigilant about financial products, market trends, FINRA rules and compliance issues will never change.
What three things differentiate your company from the competition?
First, we listen. We listen to clients and industry experts and, working together, develop a game plan. We do not tell clients what they have to do; instead we learn their goals. Then, we roll up our sleeves and work with them shoulder to shoulder.
Second, we are truly 24/7/365. Our attorneys’ cell phone numbers are on our website and every email.
Third, we know the issues involving the industry, financial advisors and investors. For 30 years our firm has represented Barron’s top 100 Brokers and some of the most successful entrepreneurs and founders who create wealth. My 20+ years of teaching in SMU’s Executive MBA program, including listening to and exchanging business solutions with successful entrepreneurs, enables me to understand entrepreneur’s and investor’s needs. My law Partner Josh Iacuone is a licensed FINRA arbitrator.
What advice would you give to someone just entering the wealth management business?
Be client-centric. Always put clients’ interests first. Focus on the long-term, not short-term production credits or commissions. Treating clients right in the short-term builds long-term relationships and generates referrals.
As I tell the young attorneys at my firm, if you take good care of the clients, everything else will take care of itself.
What are your interests and hobbies outside of your day job?
Collecting art, hiking and skiing.
Rogge Dunn represents wirehouses, FAs, RIAs and entrepreneurs in financial industry and private equity matters. He handles regulatory issues, wrongful discharge, moving teams, non-competes, partnership dissolutions and prom note defense. Dunn is Board Certified in Civil Trial Law and has taken cases all the way to jury verdicts and arbitration awards in seven states and eight Texas cities. Dunn has won more than $2 billion in judgments and settlements for his clients, including million-dollar jury verdicts or arbitration awards in California, Texas, Louisiana and Arkansas. In 2018 he was honored as one of the top 100 attorneys in Texas by Thomson Reuters. He has been recognized multiple times in The Best Lawyers in America by Woodward White. Dunn’s legal opinions and cases have been reported on the CBS Evening News, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Anderson Cooper 360, Bloomberg, U.S. News, World Report, the Today Show, CNN, CBS This Morning and USA Today.