During the holiday season, financial advisers are busy finishing year-end business activities, as well as juggling personal lives and many holiday events. As a result, the weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day seem to pass us by in a blink of an eye. That’s why it is more important than ever to take a moment to reflect on the past year, as it will help you forecast the next one.
Take, for example, what one of my former financial adviser clients, Michael, did last year. In mid-December I received an unexpected call from Michael who had just finished our 24-week mastermind group coaching program.
“Dan, I just wanted you to know that my family and I have just returned from a two-week vacation in Europe. If you recall, it was my reward for accomplishing my yearly goals,” he said with pride.
“Congratulations! I am glad that you achieved your goals and that you did in fact take the time to reward yourself,” I replied.
“Thanks, the reason for my call is that I wanted to let you know that I am contacting the five people who had the most impact on me this year,” he said casually.
I paused before replying, assuming that before he made those calls he wanted some direction from me as his coach on how to map out the conversation. “I think it’s a great idea! How can I help?”
“Well, you already did; you are one of those five people.”
I thanked him and we took some time to catch up. As I hung up the phone with him it occurred to me that very few of us really take the time to give thanks to those who have made a difference in our lives.
Because of that conversation with Michael I now ask my clients (and myself) each year: Who is on your thank-you list?
One way to answer that is to simply make a list. Review your year’s top-five successes, major milestones or “a-ha” moments—both of a personal and professional nature. Then ask yourself: Who was the one person that help contribute most to each of those?
Once you know who those five people are, it is time to pick up the phone to explain why you are calling. Share with them why they made your list and watch the conversation unfold; you may be surprised at how you can make an impact on them with your genuine gratitude!
Daniel C. Finley
Advisor Solutions Inc.
St. Paul, Minn.