Don A. Connelly is a speaker, motivator and educator for financial advisors. During a career of more than 40 years on Wall Street, he worked for nearly 19 years as company spokesperson, senior vice president and senior marketing officer for Putnam Investments, in addition to holding positions as a stock broker, financial planner, branch manager, wholesaler and national sales manager. As founder and CEO of Don Connelly 24/7, he provides timely and provocative sales ideas to thousands of financial professionals, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

When Asking for a Commitment, Make Up Your Mind in Advance

Don Connelly tips on his blog

Of all the presentations given by Financial Advisors to prospective clients on any given day, how many end up with no commitment being made? We’ll never know. Of all the presentations which end up with no commitment being made, how many end up that way because the Advisor didn’t ask for the commitment? We’ll never know that either. But we can take a pretty good guess and we can also guess why.

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Never Forget That Your Client’s Original Goal Was to Beat the Bank

Client Expectations - Beat the Bank

I’ve been mingling with clients for years and it never fails to shock me just a bit to hear how simple both their goals and their reasons for investing really are. For the most part, clients simply want to beat the bank, especially in low interest rate environments. They want to educate their children and build a retirement fund. That’s it. They aren’t trying to hit home runs. They are trying to hit singles and doubles. You can deliver singles and doubles all day long.

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Advice Is the Hardest Thing in the World to Sell

From Don Connelly Blog - audio post

I’m convinced that the fastest growing industry in the world is cheap advice. From discount houses to DIY websites to blogs like this one, everybody’s got advice for us and most of it’s worth exactly what it costs, little or nothing.

That’s because it’s not advice. It’s information and information without a user’s manual is useless. There’s so much information disguised as advice being shoved our way that it’s hard to tell the good from the bad. Real advice gets lost in the shuffle.

Our advice is hard to sell precisely because there is so much information flying around falsely packaged as advice.

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New Year’s Resolutions for 2014

New Year's Resolutions for 2014

I make too many New Year’s resolutions. I know that because I have never once kept them all. That’s ironic since I preach simplicity. So this year, I’m going to eat my own cooking. I’m going to simplify my list. I’m going to make one resolution for you and one resolution for me. Let’s start with you.

Repeat after me: In 2014, I resolve to ask for the order.

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Do Full Service Advisors Deserve Commensurate Compensation?

Financial Advisors - Full Service Compensation

There’s probably precious little a Financial Advisor can offer that you aren’t offering. Some Advisors do taxes and some do not, but basically we all generate revenue the same way. We offer the same products and the same process at essentially the same price. It’s hard to charge more than the other guy if you are both doing the same thing.

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Care More than People Expect You to Care

Don Connelly audio blog post

When people get poor service, they are not the least bit surprised.

People no longer expect good service except in the very finest of establishments, places where they willingly pay a lot in exchange for that good service. Mediocrity is the new standard.

That opens an enormous door for you. Once people get used to mediocrity, anything above mediocrity stands out.

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Overcome The Curse of Knowledge

Overcome The Curse of Knowledge

Financial Advisors know a lot about finance, economics, interest rates, taxes, estate planning, investing, the stock market and many other things. A whole lot. That knowledge comes with a price. When an Advisor knows his stuff, it’s hard to imagine not knowing it. So when an Advisor speaks to a client, the Advisor often forgets that he or she is drawing from an enormous reservoir of knowledge and speaking to someone of lesser knowledge.

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Can Charisma Be Learned?

Don Connelly audio podcast

Charismatic Financial Advisors are great communicators. They connect on an emotional level. They get people to buy in, to believe. Just imagine that you alone can make someone act and feel a certain way. No other Advisor lights up a room the way you do. Just being near you makes people feel important. That’s charisma. You would be untouchable if you had tons of charisma. Can you learn how to acquire charisma?

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