5 Top Priorities for Advisors Who Want to Build a Healthy Practice
If you want to build a healthy practice, there are several things you must prioritize, including the following.
To run a healthy business, you need a pipeline full of good leads. Referrals will probably not be enough to grow your business – and networking, whilst productive, won’t guarantee that you’ll meet the right people. So, prospecting (i.e. actively recruiting or seeking out new clients) must become your priority.
Prospecting may be the least favorite part of your job. If this is the case, work on developing your soft skills so you become more comfortable with this task.
Once you’ve developed the habit of feeling more confident about talking to strangers, prospecting will seem less daunting. Especially when you start to get more appointments, generate more leads and win new business.
#2. Building a repeatable process
Consistency is key to running a successful business. Dedicate a set time each day to priority tasks – in particular for prospecting. Then stick to your routine and don’t let anything get in the way. Even if you manage to exceed your intended quota of appointments on the first day, don’t rest on your laurels and skip prospecting for the rest of the week. Be consistent if you want to become successful.
Develop repeatable processes for everything from how and when you communicate with clients, to following up on appointments.
Define your ideal client and ensure you only prospect to those types of people.
Practice your presentation until it’s perfect, then deliver it consistently.
Stay focused and diligent. Have a ‘blue collar’ approach to everything you do. Once you do you will start to save yourself time and energy – and your professional attitude will start to pay you dividends.
#3. Connecting emotionally with clients
In your first meeting with prospects they will be more interested in your personality than in your qualifications. You need to reveal yourself as an empathetic and warm individual, someone that’s more interested in them as people than in their assets.
Most human behavior is dictated by the heart rather than the head, so appeal to the emotional side of the brain.
Give prospects an insight into your personality by telling them a ‘who I am’ story’. Draw on your personal experiences to demonstrate that you are a genuinely caring individual and that you love your job because you love helping people achieve their personal financial goals.
Tell them of a time you helped a couple achieve their dream retirement or ensured a family could afford college fees without building up debt. People only do business with people they trust and like so work on developing your inner story – make this a priority.
#4. Becoming a great listener
Active listening is not ‘hearing’. It’s far more than the physical aspect, where your ears pick up sounds. You are only truly listening when your brain works to make sense of what you hear.
If you become a great listener, your clients and prospects will warm to you because they’ll see that you’re truly interested in their opinions. Plus, if you learn to fully digest what’s being said, rather than paying lip service, you’ll understand your clients’ goals properly. Only then should you pitch in with your side of things.
#5. Developing your communication skills
Poor communication – not poor performance – is #1 reason financial advisors get fired. The best financial advisors are without fail outstanding communicators. It’s imperative that you learn to talk to clients on their own level. Use jargon at your peril because clients and prospects will switch off and drift away from you.
Instead of talking about numbers talk about goals and dreams. Enthuse and motivate clients by helping them envision what a secure financial retirement could look like. Use stories and analogies to get your message across. Startle prospects into action by relaying how few pay checks they have left until retirement.
To succeed in this profession, you need a mixture of skills – not least, superb soft skills. Make developing these a priority and you will create the foundations of a healthy business.