The Client-centred Blog

Get off the safe ground

Vulnerability ahead

You have to take risks. We will only understand the miracle of life fully when we allow the unexpected to happen.” Paulo Coelho

As a financial practitioner it is easy to only talk to your clients about products, investments and financial matters.

Why?

Because it is comfortable for you. It is where you feel safe. It is what you know about. But this isn’t where the real juice in the relationship is – not for you or your client.

There are many highly qualified financial professionals who do a technically great job for their clients but who never make the kind of impact that is genuinely transformational for their clients.

If you want to be even more highly valued by your clients, do high-impact work and earn high fees that people willingly pay then you have to get off the safe ground.

There is far more value in opening up a conversation about what your clients really want from life than just having an intellectual conversation about their finances that has no real connection to the much bigger “Why?”

Most of us do not reflect often enough, if ever at all, upon what we really want from life.

Can you truly say you know what really matters to each of your clients? What compels them? What are their priorities in life? What their fears and concerns are? Where do they want to be at the end of this year, in five years time and beyond?

An adviser client of mine recounted a situation where a couple wanted to invest a significant sum of money. Instead of just effecting the transaction he got really curious. He asked questions. He listened. He explored what was really important to them.

The clients shared that what mattered most of all was to slow down the pace of their working lives and spend more time with each other and with family. They have young grandchildren and want to be involved and enjoy seeing them grow up.

The adviser, through really getting to understand his client and the situation, was able to clearly demonstrate how this important goal was something that was possible right now and not out in the future sometime, as the clients thought it was. He helped them gain real clarity and the work they did together was genuinely life-changing because it was more than just about investing some money.

When you are able to connect what matters most to your clients together with your planning, advice and recommendations it changes everything. It takes the relationship from a transactional one, which they could have with any practitioner, to one where you are serving the client in a much more meaningful way. The result will be more engaged clients, more business and more referrals.

So, how do you get off the safe ground?

Having deeper and richer conversations with your clients is not about trying to change your behaviour. It is not about tactics, strategies or employing a step-by-step process.

It does require your willingness to be present, curious and to really listen with no agenda. Your purpose, before offering any advice, is to connect, listen and understand. Such a conversation can be as much as a journey of discovery for your clients as it is for you.

As a coach, I focus upon helping my clients understand the principles behind state of mind. This understanding, requiring no techniques of any kind, is the fastest and most precise way to helping people experience ever increasing levels of mental clarity.

When we have a quiet mind and feel secure within ourselves this, in turn, has a remarkable effect upon who we are with because of the quality of our presence. When clients feel safe in the feeling that they won’t be judged and that there is no hidden agenda, they become far more willing to really open up. It is an environment like this that facilitates a client doing their very best thinking. The product of this is that their trust in you, their perception of value in you and your work and the amount of business you do together are likely to rise – often significantly.

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn

Leave a Comment

Related articles

The 8 keys to inspiring financial planning meetings every time!
There are specific and predictable keys that result in inspiring financial planning meetings every time. And by paying attention and making consistent progress with each key, you are: 1. No longer leaving the quality of your meetings to chance. 2. Raising the bar to an exceptionally high level. In this article I list the 8 essential keys that contribute to an inspiring, repeatable process.
The 12 client-centred mind shifts - part 2
You almost certainly have clients that are worried about their finances, what might happen in future, and if they are doing the right things. We are living in challenging times. Some advisers avoid their clients at times like this. They don't want to tell them their investments have gone down or be faced with having to explain themselves.
What makes a client want to engage a financial planner?
A successful financial planner I work with remarked to me that no one ever approaches him for a financial planning engagement. Instead, there is usually a trigger event that leads a client to thinking they want a financial product, financial issue solved, or investment advice. So, how do you shift the conversation?
The most powerful two word financial planning question
This articles shares a two-word financial question that can significantly increase the value of financial planning for a client. It is also be great for opening up new business opportunities too. So, let me share how I was inspired to write this post.
Top 10 ways to capture and keep your financial planning client’s attention
To make financial planning meaningful and a good investment for your client it requires them to be fully engaged and do their best thinking in your meetings. Yet we also live in a society where an ever-increasing number of things are competing for our attention. People have shorter and shorter attention spans. So, how do you capture and keep your financial planning client’s attention?
Want more financial planning referrals? This MUST happen first
Good financial planning referrals from happy existing clients are one of the best ways to grow your practice. Yet to create a regular and increasing flow of quality referrals there is something that MUST happen first. Let me share a story.
Top 10 coaching books for financial planners
If you are doing genuine financial planning where you are helping your client identify and accomplish their goals and live the life they want then coaching them is a necessity. After all, life is full of distractions and people come off track all the time. For example, people can lose focus or their sense of purpose. From time to time they may feel discouraged, disheartened, or overwhelmed.
How to run magical financial planning review meetings - every time
When a client relationship is new it will feel fresh, engaging, and there will often be a lot to do. You are getting to know your client, they are getting to know you, and important issues are being dealt with. But how do you keep financial planning review meetings fresh, insightful, and inspiring, year after year?
How to sell more financial planning: stop giving advice
Do you want to sell more financial planning and boost your income? If so, then stopping giving financial advice might seem totally counter-intuitive, right? In this article I explore why holding back from giving advice can consistently help you sell more financial planning and serve your clients better.
The right way to set financial planning goals
In this article, you are going to discover how to help your clients set financial planning goals, the right way. You are also going to learn the difference between healthy and unhealthy goals and how this makes a massive difference to your client’s level of motivation, inspiration, and enjoyment of life now.
Highly effective rapport building for financial planners
A deep rapport with your client is the foundation for a productive, profitable, and long-lasting relationship. Therefore, being highly effective at quickly building and maintaining a deep rapport is an essential skill for financial planners.
A simple guide to influencing financial planning clients
Do you want to become more effective at influencing financial planning clients? In this simple guide I explore one of the most crucial factors of influence you can apply immediately for better results.
One of the best financial planning questions and how to use it
Often, the best financial planning questions are the ones that help a client to open up and think more deeply. Why is this important? Because the impact of your financial planning and advice is directly correlated to quality of the information you gather from your client.
Clients are not willing to pay fees for financial planning - really?
“Clients are not willing to pay fees for financial planning!” This was the bold claim of an adviser in a post I recently read on LinkedIn. You might refer to this as a 'gross generalisation' because, quite clearly, there are many people who do already pay fees for financial planning.
Should you take notes in a financial planning meeting?
What is the right approach to note taking in financial planning meetings? This is a question that often comes up in my coaching programmes with financial planners. So, let's take a closer look.
4 ways to create massive value financial planning meetings
How to do a brilliant financial planning fact find
Doing a brilliant financial planning fact find underpins everything that you do for a client. It is what differentiates you from other financial planners and is a golden opportunity to build exceptional relationships and provide massive value. But there are also two very different elements to fact finding.
How to successfully sell financial planning
Genuine financial planning is very different from providing purely transactional financial advice. So, how you sell financial planning is a different kind of conversation too. Would you like it to be easier to sell financial planning engagements?
The hidden secret to high-impact financial planning meetings
Do you want to have your financial planning meetings be high-impact, high-engagement experiences for both your clients and you? Of course! We all want this, don't we?
5 steps financial planners can take to becoming a better listener
As a financial planner what value is there in becoming a better listener? Is it worth your time, effort, and focus to improve? This article explores the value of deep listening and 5 practical steps you can take to immediately become a better listener.
Asking essential financial planning questions: the ones that no one else thinks to ask
This article looks at an important aspect of asking financial planning questions that often get neglected. Often, financial advice is triggered when something happens or is going to happens in a client’s life. For instance, the sale of a business, divorce, or an upcoming retirement.
How financial planners can build instant trust with clients
As a financial planner building instant trust with clients is one of the biggest obstacles you will need to overcome. This article looks at a different yet highly effective approach.
Getting financial planning clients - the only obstacle
Getting financial planning clients is the number one challenge for many advisers. But why is it such a challenge? It is not for the reasons that most people think...
Your financial planning fees - why they must NEVER be an issue
This article explores why your financial planning fees must never be an issue with clients. Just recently a financial planner client of mine came to our coaching session wanting to talk about a fee situation with a client of his.
What is the most important financial planning question of all?
Do you want to have greater impact with your clients, create more value, and escape the diminishing world of transactional financial advice? If so, there is an important financial planning question.
Presenting your clients financial plan - the key to success
How to get more financial planning referrals
Would you like to generate more high quality financial planning referrals?
Great people skills - in an instant!
Is it possible to have great people skills in an instant?
How to ask great financial planning questions
Asking great financial planning questions is the bedrock of gathering the information you need to create a highly compelling plan for your client.
Why is your financial planning practice culture the key to delivering exceptional service?
Are you committed to delivering exceptional client service? If so, employees who genuinely care, communicate well, and take responsibility are the key. The foundation of this resides in the business culture you create.
Are your financial planning conversations too nice?
What is the difference between a financial advisory conversation and a financial planning conversation?
Should Financial Planners stop talking about retirement?
Why should financial planners choose their language carefully in their financial planning conversations with clients?
Understanding your client’s world – key number 1
Financial Advice is so often delivered in very unimaginative ways that has little difference to how the majority of practitioners deliver it.