Whenever I think about “back to school” two things happen. First, I remember how excited I used to get to buy all my new school supplies for the year, and then I remember what it was like to pick out my classes. Financial advisors go through a similar process coming out of the slow summer months, and here are some tips to gear up and maximize your productivity:
- Reach out to your clients: Inquire about how their summers went, what they did with or without their kids, how their families are doing, what their plans are for the rest of the year. One conversation can accomplish a lot more than you think. If you ask the right questions, and listen actively, you’ll probably reveal several opportunities for business with them. More importantly, however, you’ll make a point of connection and remind them that you’re there to look out for their best interests.
- Get your education on: So it’s back to school time for your children, but what does that mean for you? You have the ability to rely on a somewhat more routine schedule, if not less hectic, which should free you up to set some time aside for your own education. Think about signing up for a workshop or CE credit class. Our Certified Financial Services Coaching Skill Program™, was recently just approved as Approved Coach Specific Training Hours (ACSTH) by the International Coach Federation (ICF) and serves as a great opportunity for advisors or coaches partnering with advisors to learn how to improve communication and relationship skills. I find that advisors are often better off pursuing education in areas that they don’t tend to work on day-to-day because is balances their efforts in working on versus working in their businesses.
- Attend National Financial Advisor Week 2013, #NFAW2013: Coming up in the third week of September, this week-long event will take place in Times Square and will provide advisors incredible exposure to potential clients, centers of influence, and media opportunities, not to mention the plethora of speakers, panels, and booths, which will provide information to enhance and improve your businesses.
- Make sure your processes are in place: We talk about process a lot in financial services, and there is good reason for it. If time is money, then processes will save you a lot. We encourage advisors to set up strong processes around: client acquisition, client satisfaction, client onboarding, and loyal client advocate and professional center of influence interaction, among others. It is imperative to involve your staff in these discussions, as in some respects they may be more familiar with the processes than you are, and will likely be frequently implementing them.
- Hire an intern: No matter how robust your team, there is always room for another set of hands to tackle that project that you or your staff keep putting off. Often, the new energy and ideas that come along with hiring someone with a fresh perspective is beneficial for everyone. Consider talking to a local university or school to see if they have any business or finance students looking to take on a couple of hours of field experience in addition to their academic credits.
A new school year is just as much an opportunity for you to have a new beginning as it is for your children or your client’s children. Take advantage of this momentum to start a new routine for yourself, your team, and your clients!
Coaching questions from this article:
What have you been meaning to pursue in your business that you’ve been putting off? How would doing one of the above help?
Which clients could you most use to touch base with either because they are most valuable to your book of business or they are clients you haven’t spoken with in a while?
Where could you start to create processes to streamline your business and how could you involve your team’s help in doing so?