I am seldom surprised at the types of challenges that advisers say they are experiencing because I have coached them for over 10 years, but in a recent Solutions Session, I heard a challenge that I must admit was unique.
Lori K, a veteran financial adviser with over 20 years in the business said, “My number one challenge is…well..that I’m bored,” she said emphatically.
I probed a bit.
“What exactly do you mean–bored with the work itself or the industry overall?”
She shared with me that she literally could retire because she was at “retirement age” but that she didn’t want to retire yet she was finding that she didn’t have the motivation she needed to grow her business any longer. Frankly she just wasn’t inspired to do any more than she absolutely had to.
I paused briefly before replying, “Lori, what you need is to get beyond your boredom.”
Knowing that I now had her attention, I took her through a series of questions summarized by the following:
Step No. 1: Find Your Motivation
“Why are you in this business?” I asked, seeking for why she was sticking with her career choice despite not wanting to retire.
“I wouldn’t know what to do with my time,” she responded. Often times the first response to this question isn’t the “real” answer.
“Let’s come up with your top five reasons for staying in this business,” I told her. This is what she came up with:
1. I don’t know what I would do with my time if I wasn’t an adviser
2. I like to stay current with the market
3. I like to make money
4. My clients have become friends and I don’t want to leave them by retiring
5. I like finding out what they need most and helping them solve their biggest financial fears
Step No. 2: Find Your Passion
Once I knew what motivated her I needed to know which one of those motivations was the most important so we could identify her passion. When I asked her of those top five motivations which one she believed to be the most important, she said, “I like finding out what my clients need most and then help them solve their biggest financial fears. That is the most fun and rewarding for me!”
She went on to give an example of a high net worth client that had sold his business for $30 million. Thinking that he had no cares in the world, she was surprised to learn that his biggest fear was when he died passing that money along to his son and having his son spend it irresponsibly. Lori replied that she was passionate about solving his challenge with/for him and becoming involved in helping him develop a strategy for managing his estate as well as educating his son about responsible money management.
Step No. 3: Find Your Mission
“If this is your greatest passion, then why don’t you make it your mission to help out all of your clients by finding out what their No. 1 fear is when it comes to their money and help them with the solutions?” I excitedly asked.
“That’s it! That’s what I am going to do,” she exclaimed. “I’m going to help them before I retire. Just thinking about this makes me want to get started right away. Thank you.”
Although each adviser has their own motivation, passion and mission for their business, all advisers must know what they are. Once you know what yours are start working towards fostering and encouraging them. Sometimes just rethinking why you decided on this career path and what you find most exciting or worthwhile about it can spark your enthusiasm and help push boredom aside.
If you read this article and are interested in hearing Lori’s story in the one-hour audio Solutions Session titled Turing Obstacles into Opportunities, email Melissa Denham at firstname.lastname@example.org or schedule a free complimentary consultation to discuss how to get beyond boredom with your practice; email me at email@example.com.
I can help you put the passion back into your practice!
Daniel C. Finley
St. Paul, Minn.
Editor’s Note: Once you determine what your motivation, passion and mission are, learn how to better foster your relationships with the clients that remain with you with an FPA webinar titled, “Engagement Standards: Mastering Ideal Client Relationships,” by Business Coach Tracy Beckes.