‘Effective Communication’ Archive
1. Acknowledge and compliment the fact that they took time out of their busy schedules to prepare for and attend this meeting. It’s more effective and appropriate to compliment people for coming to your office, rather than thanking them for coming in. When you thank someone for something it’s because they did something for you. Your prospects and clients do not come to meetings for your benefit. They come for reasons that benefit them. Therefore, thanking them for coming to the meeting is inappropriate and indicates that your focus is in the wrong place: on you instead of them. Your mindset should NOT be, “thank you for coming in so I can make some money today!” It sounds so obviously wrong when you think about it, doesn’t it? Yet, most advisors start meetings with prospects and clients by saying, “thank you for meeting with me today.”
1. Clarifying questions: “What do you mean by __________?”
Clarifying questions provide more detail. Imagine that you’re on an airplane, and you strike up a conversation with the person sitting next to you with the comment, “Tell me something good that’s happening in your life today.” She answers, “My kids are going back to school!” A follow-up, clarifying question could be, “What do you mean by going back to school?” She tells you that her twin sons have been working all summer, living at home, and she’s looking forward to them getting back to college to start the next chapter in their growth and, as much as she loves having them at home, she’s also happy to have more time for herself. The clearer you are about the context, the easier it will be for you to go deep. Based on her response, what question would you ask next?
The easiest way to start a conversation with a stranger, after the standard exchange of names, is to ask a question — preferably something less bland than, “How are you doing?” or, “What do you do?”. There are better questions that create better conversations that can lead easily and naturally to an offer to talk again.
Great opening questions have 4 characteristics:
New competition in the form of digital or “robo-advisors” has many industry leaders and advisors concerned. For the most part, machines are currently just digital money managers or TAMPs. As the machines get better and better at increasing their capability, and as user interfaces become friendlier, it’s possible that machines will be able to do sophisticated financial planning and give advice without a human interface.
Naïve advisors discount the machine as a legitimate competitor. Machines are as dumb right now as they are ever going to be. Their capability is increasing exponentially, not linearly. How many humans do you know who are twice as smart, twice as fast, or twice as effective as they were a year ago? Competition from technology will continue to get stronger, faster. Those advisors who try to hang on to skills that machines can do better will likely not survive. Technology is much better at the “hard skills” of crunching numbers, aggregating data, automating follow-up, portfolio construction and management, creating reports, etc. The smart human advisors will not compete with the machines.
Ask yourself…Are you confident in the future? In the new world of the DOL Fiduciary Standard, Robo-Advisors and other industry disruptions, it’s possible for you to not only survive, but to THRIVE!
How? By focusing on the key areas that you can control and develop the skills and confidence needed to acquire high net-worth clients in any market and effectively manage yourself and your business. You control your client acquisition process and activities. You control the value you deliver to each client. You control how you lead your team and your business. You control how you manage your time and set your priorities. You control your quality of life and work / life balance.
Watch this two minute video and find out how to learn a 30-year proven process that’s completely turn-key for only $50 / month from Bill Bachrach.
Perhaps one of the reasons technology is so quickly embraced by us human beings is because we struggle to delay gratification. We spend more than we earn to live a lifestyle we can’t really afford, we get duped into believing we can get rich quick and without risk, we waste billions of dollars a year on fad diets that promise weight loss without effort, and we do the same with fitness equipment and programs that promise to make us fast and strong without breaking a sweat. Most of us joined the Financial Services industry, in part, for the unlimited income and total time freedom.
The “app” is the ultimate promise of instant gratification. Just download the app and you’ve got a way to do something you want done right now. It’s very cool. I love apps! Wouldn’t it be great if there was an app for everything? Need referrals instantly? There’s an app for that! Need to execute a brilliant client interview right now? There’s an app for that! Need to know the right advice to give a client so they achieve their goals for a meeting in 10 minutes? There’s an app for that! Need to hire a great assistant tomorrow? There’s an app for that! Need to know what to say to engage strangers at a social or business networking event so they want to meet you for business tomorrow? There’s an app for that! Need more confidence to build your business? There’s an app for that! Need to know how to get wealthy people to trust you with all of their money? There’s an app for that! And of course they are either free or only 99 cents and there is very little effort involved in using them and the results are guaranteed.
Sorry. I was being tongue in cheek to make a point. Of course, there are no apps for these things because not everything can be taken care of with an app.
What technology can’t change, not even the brilliance of the iPhone or the iPad or the many apps, is the fact that there are universal laws and principals that govern real and lasting success in life and in business. No matter how cool the technology becomes there will never be an app for those things that require mastery.
This is good news and bad news.
The bad news is that there is no app for that.
The good news is that there is no app for that.
There’s no app that will make you a black belt martial artist. Becoming a black belt will require a good instructor, lots of practice time, commitment, implementation in the real world, and dedication over several years.
Scratch golf? Sorry, no app for that.
Triathlete? Sorry, no app for that.
Tennis? Sorry, no app for that.
Guitar? Sorry, no app for that.
Piano? Sorry, no app for that.
Successful businessperson? Sorry, no app for that.
Good Spouse? Sorry, no app for that.
Good Parent? Sorry, no app for that.
Engineer? Sorry, no app for that.
Doctor? Sorry, no app for that.
Lawyer? Sorry, no app for that.
Mechanic? Sorry, no app for that.
Cop? Sorry, no app for that.
Firefighter? Sorry, no app for that.
Financial Planner or Advisor? Ditto. No app. Bummer.
There’s no app for conducting brilliant client interviews, effective implementation and progress meetings, asking for referrals, making follow-up calls, building the administrative and technical expert team to help you serve your clients. It’s all do-able, but there is no shortcut or silver bullet to produce results at the most important things in business and in life.
There’s no app, but there is a formula: a good instructor, lots of practice time, commitment, implementation in the real world, and dedication over several years.
The flip-side is that most Financial Advisors waste years, even decades, seeking and trying to circumvent a truth that cannot be escaped: there’s no app for lasting success. No shortcut. No silver bullet.
How is this good news? If you are one of the few who are actually willing to do the work, over time, to build these skills you have a distinct and substantial advantage over what will no longer even be called the “competition.” Embark on the Master’s journey and you will acquire all the Ideal Clients you need to generate all the business revenue to cover your expenses, pay your taxes, and have all the net income you want for a great present lifestyle, and all the money you need to fund your future goals and financial independence.
What does a Financial Advisor need to master in order to build a successful business? Just 6 things.
Client Service Mastery. Help your clients get their entire financial house in perfect order and keep it that way forever. This starts with the implementation meeting, which is the first meeting after you’ve been hired, and cycles through 3 meetings per year to help your clients keep their financial house in perfect order.
Webinar #1: Introduction Webinar for Mastering the Art of Client Acquisition and Business Development
Date & Time: Thursday, October 15th at 11:00am PDT – Learn More / Register
Webinar #2: A Casual Conversation with David Bach
Date & Time: Wednesday, October 21st at 12:30pm PDT – Learn More / Register
If you cannot make a live webinar but would like to watch the replay, go ahead and register and we will send you a webinar replay link shortly after the live presentation.
(VIDEO) Why You Cannot Afford to Miss This Workshop & Online Course with David Bach, Kevin Knull and Bill Bachrach
Bill Bachrach has teamed up with MoneyGuidePro® and FA Magazine to present a 3-Day Workshop & Online Course, Mastering the Art of Client Acquisition & Business Development: The 7 Critical Conversations to Building a Seven-Figure Financial Advice Business.
A 3-Day Workshop + Online Course. Earn 16.5 CE Credits.
Register at www.peopleskillsnetwork.com. Use Promo Code BAI1K to receive $1,000 off tuition.
November 13th – 15th, 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia.
Powerful keynote presentations by industry leaders, a highly interactive workshop to develop skills and confidence you can apply immediately, and instant access to our robust Online Course Materials to get your next ideal client… and the one after that and the one after that and one after that.
Who Are the Keynote Speakers?
Kevin Knull, President of MoneyGuidePro® – As the president of MoneyGuidePro®, Kevin has a unique perspective on the action-able data that will help you make better business decisions and elevate the value of your client experience. In this session you will discover why and how being a great financial planner is also great for business.
David Bach, 9 Times New Work Times Best Selling Author / Expert Financial Services Marketer – You will learn how you can grow your business applying the same “people skills” that David used to become a 9x best-selling author, making over 100 appearances on the Today Show as their go-to financial guy, and appear 6 times on Oprah.
Bill Bachrach, Chairman & CEO of Bachrach & Associates, Inc. – Bill Bachrach has 27-year track record of training the best financial advisors in the world and those who aspire to be as measured by value delivered to the client, financial success, and quality of life. Hall of Fame speaking skills and humor combined with practical content that consistently produces excellent results have made him a popular resource for advisors who choose to be the best.
What Will Be the Result of Registering?
You will more effectively engage higher net-worth prospects, more rapidly convert prospects to clients, inspire clients to consolidate all of their business with you and get more referrals. In short, you will generate more revenue and grow your business more than you’ve ever thought possible. Don’t believe us? Check out just a few of our success stories here: https://peopleskillsnetwork.com/results/
Register or learn more at www.peopleskillsnetwork.com. Make sure to use Promo Code BAI1K to receive $1,000 off tuition during registration.
There are vital ingredients necessary to engage people in the conversations that turn leads into prospects, prospects into clients, and clients into people who take action on your advice and refer you to their friends, family, and colleagues.
These vital ingredients are easy to understand but hard to master.
Let’s first examine the vital ingredients, The 7 Critical Conversations.
Critical Conversation #1: Mastery of the first conversation.
Every future Ideal Client relationship starts with a stranger. However you choose to prospect and market, your ability to engage strangers is critical to your success.
How do you engage a person or couple, in any situation or environment, in a way that inspires them to want to talk to you again without coming across like a schmucky financial salesperson trolling for business?
This is a skill that anyone who is dedicated can master. It’s about asking the right questions, listening with empathy, hearing what’s most meaningful, important, significant, and compelling to them, and then being able to make an offer to take a simple first step that’s relevant FOR THEM.
Critical Conversation #2: Mastery at scheduling the appointment.
How do you inspire people, both spouses, to come to your office with all of their financial documents? Given all the demands on their time and all of their options for getting financial education, information, advice, and products… what will be the reason they agree to take the time to get their financial documents together, carve time out of their busy work schedules or retirement activities to come see you?
It won’t happen by accident. It’s a skill that can be mastered. Scripted, practiced, and executed in the real world.
People have embedded in their subconscious minds an imaginary trust dial. And everything you say and do moves the needle on the trust dial one direction… or the other. We’re talking about the first 45 to 60 seconds. It HAS to be scripted. It has to be scripted word for word and you have to practice those words over and over and over again until you are brilliantly effective. Not just at delivering the words, but with the right tonality, the right facial expressions, and with a totally trustworthy way of being.
Do you remember that scene from the movie Jerry McGuire where Renee Zelweiger’s character said, “You had me at hello?” That’s your goal: to have them at hello.
Critical Conversation #4: Mastery at making an emotional connection in the face-to-face interview.
What follows the opening is a conversation, with each spouse, about their personal core values. Core values are the emotional why that drive all of their important decisions. Most FAs jump too quickly into asking clients about their goals without laying an emotional foundation of why they want what they want. The skill to set this emotional foundation is crucial. Why always precedes what.
10 Principles of Maintaining Client Trust: The Key to Long-Term Success – Complimentary Webinar September 29th
As you know, without trust nothing else matters. I’m sure you know what it’s like when a client trusts you. Have you had the experience of working overtime to earn someone’s trust and enjoyed the benefits building trust can bring? It’s a great feeling, isn’t it? One the other hand, you may have had the experience of not creating trust quickly enough with certain prospects. It’s not a good feeling to be trustworthy, but unable to create that belief in the eyes of the prospect. With trust, establishing relationships with the right clients seems almost effortless. Without trust, it’s an uphill battle. A battle, moreover, that can’t be won with experience, knowledge or even credentials. Remember, without trust nothing else matters.
The following 10 Principles have been developed to crystallize the actions that build and maintain trust with your clients. If you are reading one of these ideas and think “I know that” let that thought trigger the more profitable thought, “Am I doing that?” You always achieve greater levels of success doing what you know, not just knowing it.
If you are interested in attending a complimentary webinar I am hosting on September 29th, 2015 titled, “Mastering the Art of Client Acquisition and Business Development,” CLICK HERE to register. If you cannot attend but would like to watch a replay, please register and the webinar replay link will be made available to you 24 hours after the live webinar.
1) We demonstrate our trustworthiness based on our ability to ask good questions and our willingness to listen. The flip side of this principal is that trust is not based on being told about individual credentials or company accomplishments. If you begin your relationships by talking about your personal credentials and how great your company is, you probably have a client who nods on the outside and thinks “Who cares?” on the inside. Ask good questions, shut up, and listen. Avoid listening for a need that you can fill with one of your products. Listen to truly understand your client. People will perceive you as knowledgeable, credible and trustworthy based on the quality of your questions and how you listen, not by your statements.
There was an agent friend of mine who went into an interview with a prospect. The agent set the stage perfectly by asking the client questions about what was important to him and then waiting for the prospect to completely answer the questions. After the agent completed the first three questions of the interview, the prospect said, “I can tell you are the kind of person I would like to do business with because of the kind of questions you ask.” This prospect has a $25 million business and doesn’t have any insurance or related products. The prospect sent the agent a thank you note for the time they spent together and said he was looking forward to working with him. How many of your prospects and/or clients send you thank you notes for the time you spend with them. What types of questions are you asking?
2) Often the shortest path to a trusting relationship crosses through some feelings of discomfort. We trust people who help us discover the truth even if it is uncomfortable. This can be difficult to accept for many salespeople because our goal has always been to make people feel comfortable. It’s a new perspective to realize people will trust you more when they become comfortable being sometimes uncomfortable when they are with you. The truth isn’t always pleasant. A good example is life insurance. When people think of life insurance, they naturally think of their own mortality, which sometimes creates discomfort. You can help them get past their discomfort and move toward decisions that will benefit their family and make them feel good. Help people recognize the truth, be willing to deal with their discomfort and they will trust you. Don’t confuse discomfort with negative emotions.
Perhaps one of the most ineffective ideas perpetuated in our industry is the “elevator pitch.”
The idea of the elevator pitch is that you say something so unique and clever that people will want to talk to you about becoming your client. Can you envision it? You just say the magic words and prospects clamor for your business card. It’s so alluring that I’ve been guilty of wanting to believe this is possible myself. However, I have come to recognize that the key to engaging people, especially wealthy people who have lots of experience with financial advisors and institutions, is to ask great questions. Especially in that first 30 seconds … even if you are actually riding an elevator.
People would rather talk about themselves than listen to other people talk. Even as a cold-calling rookie 30 years ago, I remember that nobody hung up the phone while they were talking! And the same is true in person. People don’t become bored talking with you when they are talking. People don’t perceive you as just another typical FA while they are talking. People don’t conclude that they already have all of their financial affairs taken care of while they are talking. People don’t become uninterested in speaking with you while they are talking.
So what do you do if you literally have that proverbial 30 seconds in the elevator with someone who could become your next ideal client? Or more likely when you meet someone at a cocktail party or fund-raiser? Ask a great question that gets them talking about something that is meaningful, important, significant and compelling to them. Imagine the elevator doors open, they are still talking, and they would like to continue talking to you. They will be much more receptive to your offer to continue the conversation and, eventually, to your offer to take the next step in the journey of becoming your next ideal client.
While this may seem self-evident, very few FAs have developed this skill.
What kind of questions?
First of all, these are definitely not simple-minded conversations about the weather, sports or the news headline of the day. Nor are they questions about the person’s money, the markets, economics or financial planning needs.
In fact, I asked the most interesting and successful people I know to send me their favorite questions and I put them together in a worksheet. I’ve included some of their contributions below:
MoneyGuidePro®, FA Magazine, and I have partnered to present a brand new 3-Day Workshop titled, Mastering the Art of Client Acquisition and Business Development: The 7 Critical Conversations to Building and Maintaining a Seven-Figure Financial Advice Business.
A 3-Day Workshop + Robust Online Course Materials (Online Course Available Immediately Upon Registration)
Attend this special Workshop from November 13th – 15th in Atlanta, GA at a special discounted tuition and earn 16.5 CE Credits. Use Promo Code BAI1K to receive $1,000 off the published tuition at checkout.
I look forward to working with you in the future.