The More Words You Use to Get Your Point Across, the Less People Listen

Get Your Point Across Succinctly

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Have you noticed that the more a person talks, the less connected to the listener he or she seems to be? There is no give and take. People like that think the listener finds them as fascinating as they find themselves. They are not fascinating. They are boring.

In your role as a Financial Advisor, talking too much is the kiss of death.

Every word you say diminishes the power of the previous word. The more you speak, the less your listener hears. The less you speak, the more grateful your listener.

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It’s very easy to talk too much. Silence is uncomfortable. When you are trying to convince someone to become your client, you can’t avoid the anxiety that comes with feeling insecure. Insecurity makes us nervous and nervous people talk a lot. Or maybe you’re just a talker. You get carried away. Perhaps you are truly interesting and want to share your views.

Whatever the reason, we need to tone it down. Talking too much doesn’t make you a bad person. It is, however, a counter-productive trait for Financial Advisors.

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When someone talks too much, we don’t hear a word they say.

Our mind wanders. They fail to hold our attention. They begin to drone and we zone out. Everyone zones out. Zoning out is perfectly normal behavior. It has happened to you behind the wheel many times. You seem to snap to and gasp a bit about the fact that you don’t remember driving the last two or three miles. Let’s not give people any more reason to zone out than we have to.

Add to the normal tendency of a wandering mind the burden of being bombarded with financial data and numbers. We are pretty much guaranteed not to have an audience after sixty seconds.

The cure for this, of course, is getting our message across succinctly; no verbal spamming.

The Advisor who can do this will open many accounts and gather many assets.

I would suggest you begin by resisting the temptation to include too many talking points when speaking with clients or prospects.

Look for the one idea that best reflects the point you want people to remember.

Build what you want to say around that idea. You’re not talking for the sake of talking. You want people to take action. You want them clearheaded, not awash in detail.

Use figures of speech to make the unfamiliar familiar.

Proverbs have lasted for thousands of years because they put important life lessons in just a few words. People who live in glass houses should not throw stones. Better late than never. Birds of a feather flock together. Analogies are stories and everyone loves and pays attention to stories. Life is like a box of chocolates. When you invest for the first time, you will feel like a fish out of water.

I could go on for pages on this topic, but let me instead leave you with a simple thought:

If you want folks to pay attention to you, give them reason to do so.

Be interesting. Choose your words carefully. Be a good listener. Make the conversation about them. Be charming. Let your guard down. Let people get to know the real you. Don’t patronize. Be authentic. And, above all, be succinct.

Thomas Jefferson put it quite well:

“The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do.”

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