As a performance coach, I often have opportunities to work with my clients on selling and closing skills.
I get the chance to hear their inner dialogues as they face new opportunities.
Oftentimes, because they’re ramping-up their games to take-on bigger clients, the stakes get higher.
Preparation feels even more crucial.
So, we roleplay…
Sometimes they’re brilliant. Words jump from their tongues.
Other times, nerves get the best of them. And words escape them.
But as much as they battle to find the exact right words…the biggest missing ingredient is NOT the words.
The confidence that comes from KNOWING that they are really good at what they do. That the value they bring is priceless.
The confidence of truly BELIEVING in themselves.
The confidence of champions.
A confident attitude ALWAYS wins the day.
You may not be able to control every outcome. But you can control the way you deal with EVERY outcome.
True champions may get knocked down, but they learn from defeat.
And they confidently rise to fight another day.
Putting the past behind them.
Think of a closer in a baseball game. Brought in to pitch the final outs of a one-run game with the bases loaded.
When the pressure is most intense.
Even if they blew their last save, they don’t relive it on the mound.
They may have looked at some film. Talked to a coach. Or dug a little deeper in their pre-game routines.
But now, on the mound, they BELIEVE in their skills.
They follow their proven success routines.
They KNOW they will throw the right pitches.
They bring confidence.
How does this play out in the world of financial advice?
Let’s look at a few scenarios…
#1) During a coaching session, an advisor told to me…
“There’s no way I’m going to land this new client. I’ve never managed an 8-figure portfolio before. May as well not get my hopes up. That way, if I don’t close the business…I won’t be upset. And…if I do close the business, I know it’s just luck. I’ll just give it the good old college try.”
I couldn’t help him out of this doom-and-gloom mindset.
Guess what happened?
Good at bat. Solid contact with the ball. But thrown out at Homeplate.
In the prospect’s words: “You made a good presentation, but it didn’t feel like you really wanted my business.”
Fear and doubt ruled the day.
And it showed up at the worst possible moment.
#2) During a post-meeting debriefing, an advisor admits…
“Totally blew that one. I thought I had it in the bag. I’ve closed deals like that dozens of times.”
The advisor was making a pitch for a 7.5 million-dollar relationship. An introduction from his best COI.
But instead of going into the meeting with confidence, he became arrogant.
Talked. Didn’t listen.
Bragged. Didn’t ask questions.
After the meeting, his COI partner asked him, “Who were you trying to be? You came across like a total jerk.”
The advisor knew it. Wasn’t sure why it happened.
But he abandoned his success routine.
Confidence turned into arrogance.
An expensive way to learn a valuable lesson.
Have confidence in the REAL you.
Let your true value show-through.
#3) An excited CFP calls for help with a proposal meeting…
I immediately sensed worry.
He was abandoning routines that had brought him tons of success.
Sounded like this…
“Huge referral. This could be my biggest client ever. 12-mllion-dollars would be a huge boost to my AUM. I’ve done a ton of extra homework. I’ve run the plan through as many what-if scenarios as possible. And I’ve just about memorized everything I’ll need to say to impress the hell out of these folks. But I’m probably not going to sleep tonight. I want to be sure I haven’t missed anything.”
The excessive preparation backfired. Shattered his confidence.
“I felt like a nerdy, pushy salesman. Even though my prospect was super nice, the simplest questions threw me off-track. I began to question everything I was saying. And we ran out of time. I only made it through half of my presentation.”
Fortunately, the referral gave the planner a “do-over.” We reworked his approach. And he won the business.
What did he do differently in the 2nd meeting?
“I went in with a different attitude. I knew I had the planning chops to handle this client, so I showed it by asking questions and really listening to the answers. The referral basically told me what he was looking for. And I assured him that my knowledge, skills and commitment to client care were exactly the right answer. The real me showed up.
Obsessive preparation doesn’t trump self-confidence.
Yes, be prepared.
But don’t hide behind fancy words, phrases and equations.
Develop a success formula. Stick with it.
Have confidence in your one-of-a-kind value.
And sell the real you.
P.S. If you’d like my personal help with building the confidence you need to grow to 100MM and beyond in AUM, just send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org.)