When we think about top financial advisors, we naturally think of descriptors such as intelligence, interpersonal skills, sales skills, and more. However, we often neglect what is arguably the chief component – the advisor’s mindset.
When I first started at Oechsli, we held our infamous Rainmaker Weekends. We began the workshops with the topic of “mindset” given that we believe it is the foundation for advisor success. However, shortly into the presentation, some advisors became restless. They asked, “When do we get to the activities and learn how to improve our sales skills?”
Was it the abstract nature of the topic? Was it that these advisors didn’t think their mindset was important? Maybe, but I think it’s more likely that analyzing your own mindset requires self-awareness and brutal honesty. It requires you to look at your current habits, tendencies, and limitations. Only then can you address what’s holding you back.
The number one prospecting struggle we see is affluent sales reluctance. Affluent sales reluctance (aka social self-consciousness) is basically being skittish about approaching people of wealth.
How do you know if affluent sales reluctance is an issue for you? We often find it’s embodied by two mindsets:
- “I don’t want to come across as salesy.” Obviously, no one wants to come across as salesy, but this often becomes an excuse for not going outside the comfort zone. In reality, most advisors are on the other end of the spectrum. They’re so afraid of coming across salesy that they never approach social contacts about business at all. They wait for social prospects to approach them, and many of them are still waiting.
Working on the language can make all the difference. The more you rehearse with yourself or a coach, the more concise and confident you become. This may take daily repetition until you master the language. In addition, you must believe in your solution. Once you truly believe in the service you are selling, your sales pitch will flow naturally. Lastly, think through how you’ll exit a tough conversation. If your prospect bristles, knowing how you’ll exit will give you confidence going in.
- “I don’t want to ruin the relationship if it doesn’t work out.” We all fear rejection. No one likes being told “no.” However, top advisors understand that every “no” gets them closer to a “yes.” The truth is, even if a social contact rejects your offer to review their finances, it’s unlikely to ruin the relationship. Our affluent research shows that the number one activity that makes someone come across as salesy is aggressive follow-up. Be okay with a no, but position yourself for success in the future.
Train your mind to embrace the “no.” Dale Carnegie said it best: “Develop success from failures. Discouragement and failure are two of the surest stepping stones to success.” Remember that what you are selling is a valuable service and that while hearing the word “no” stings at times, it is important to maintain your positive mindset around your skill set and your professional service. The fastest way to get over the sting of a “no” is to continue your prospecting activity.
Mindset can make or break you. I’ve heard Matt Oechsli say many times it’s what goes on within that seven-inch playing field between your ears that makes the most difference.