It is hard to believe we are entering the final weeks of summer. Labor Day definitely offers a symbolic end to the season, so with a month to go, ask yourself: How can I make the most of it and ensure my advisory practice flourishes?
1. Evaluate Your Summer Goals
Hopefully you had clearly defined your goals for the summer months since it is one of the more difficult seasons to be productive. If so, then it is time to evaluate your progress. Do they align with what you had hoped for, or have you fallen behind? Take a moment to determine where you are now and where you desire to be before more time escapes.
An example may be that your goal was to gather $3 million in assets over three months. However, you have only gathered $1.5 million in new assets, thus, you still need another 1.5 million over the next month to accomplish your summer goal.
2. Prioritize Your Most Important Tasks
Once you know where you are and what you still need to do, it’s time to determine how to get there. Most advisers neglect this step and continue doing exactly what they had been doing before. Unfortunately, most also continue getting the same results. Instead, it is crucial to prioritize your most important tasks so that you don’t waste time on meaningless activities.
An example would be to determine the top 15 prospects/clients you would like to meet with before the end of the summer then prioritize them in order of importance.
3. Map Out Your Daily Activities
Now that you know what tasks you need to accomplish, it’s important to schedule time to work on those tasks daily. If you don’t, you run the risk of letting a day, then a week, or the rest of the summer fly by without getting any closer to accomplishing your goals.
In the previous example, you could easily get caught up in the day-to-day operations of working in your business and never take the time to work on the business. You could also easily write out the list of your top 15 prospects/clients and put it aside without ever connecting with them. To be most effective, schedule a specific time during the day to make those calls to the prospects or current clients. If you know that consistently from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. is your prospecting hour, plan out what you are going to say and be prepared to handle objections; then you will certainly have a higher probability for being successful.
4. Create Your Tracking System
Goals have a way of becoming more concrete and obtainable when you have a tracking system. Something as simple as an Excel spreadsheet tracking your pipeline will keep your progress right in front of you at all times. Without it, you may think you are doing better than you are and you would be less organized, as it is easy to let details slip through the cracks. Create a pipeline report or set up a New Business Strategy List (email us for our template).
5. Define Your Prize
One of the best ways to obtain goals is to have a clearly defined reward system. It can be as simple as a daily trip to Starbucks or as elaborate as a long weekend in the Florida Keys. It’s up to you to decide, but you must reward yourself for a job well done as it truly is a motivator and generates and sustains momentum for your continued success.
These five steps may seem obvious to implement into your daily best practices, however they rely on one another. By omitting even one of them, the system or process loses some of its structure or framework, where together they provide a strong and solid foundation that your business can grow upon.
For a complimentary consultation with Dan or to receive his New Business Strategy List template, email Melissa Denham, Advisor Solutions’ director of client servicing.
Daniel C. Finley
St. Paul, Minn.