Julie Littlechild hopes to shake things up and start fresh conversations about advisors and their businesses through her new Toronto-based company, If Not Now Research.

“People seem to be asking the same questions and doing research in the same way,” says Littlechild, “so I’m really hoping to get a bit more creative about it.”

Launched in January 2015, the firm (ifnotnowresearch.com) conducts research for financial services associations and companies interested in finding out more about advisory businesses, and what does, or doesn’t, make them successful and innovative enterprises. The company will operate primarily in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom.

The new company marks a departure for Littlechild from client feedback research, which was the centerpiece of Advisor Impact Inc. Littlechild’s original company was purchased by Toronto-based Accretive 360 Inc. — now Accretive Advisor Inc. — in 2011 and will close its doors for good on Feb. 28.

Littlechild’s new firm will also carry out its own research to better understand the strengths and mindset of successful advisors — a topic of personal interest to Littlechild. “I’m just fascinated by why one advisor has been successful and another just doesn’t quite reach it,” she says, adding, “I’m just driven to understand the answers to some of these questions.”

Advisors looking to find out such answers themselves can do so through the company’s “The Spotlight” program. The program consists of profiles of financial advisors with particularly interesting and thriving practices.

“[The Spotlight program] is very much focused on giving advisors a backstage pass to other great advisory businesses,” says Littlechild. “It’s a way to [learn from other successful advisors] and tap into best practices.”

The program consists of in-depth video interviews of advisors sharing tactics and tools they use in the day-to-day operation of their businesses.

There is also a philanthropic aspect to this program with 15% of the revenue generated in one month from a profiled advisor going to a charity of his or her choice.