toxic habits to avoid

12 Jun 2020

8 Toxic Habits Successful Financial Advisors Should Avoid At All Costs

Customers who turn to financial advisors entrust them with the extremely important matter of maintaining the security of their finances. Being able to meet current clients’ expectations, uphold trust and still keep new businesses rolling in is vital if one wants to become a successful financial advisor. Here are 7 toxic habits that financial advisors avoid at all cost in order to attain success and reach the pinnacle of their careers.

Bad Habit #1: Ignoring Other Aspects Of Client’s Financial Life

If you thought that merely liaising with the client themselves is enough to propel you to success, then you cannot be more mistaken. Successful financial advisors take the effort to form healthy relationships with not just their clients but their CPAs (Certified Public Accountant) as well. Doing so will allow your client to see that you are working hard to provide that extra service in coordinating the financial aspect of their life and you will also be doing yourself a favour as you can expect referrals from CPAs too.

Bad Habit #2: Bad Communication Skills

Forgetting to return calls after having promised to do so, not answering phone calls, taking forever to reply an email – all these account to terrible communication skills and it won’t be long before the client realises that you are an unreliable person. Additionally, this shows a lack of respect to your customers. It is advisable that you avoid doing this at all costs.

Bad Habit #3: Being Dishonest

Being dishonest and not speaking truthfully and frankly when a client comes up with risky financial ideas is a deal breaker. Trust is one of the cornerstones of a fruitful and long-lasting relationship with your clients and you should never try to hide uncomfortable facts just to keep the commissions coming in. The job of a good advisor is to dish out sound advice, whether or not they agree with the client’s decisions.

Bad Habit #4: Putting Your Own Interest Before Clients

Being solely motivated by the commissions that you may earn by recommending financial products is a huge no-no. You should also ensure that there are no conflicts of interest and advise solutions that are genuinely the best options for your clients. This is the best long-term strategy to build a solid and loyal customer base.

Bad Habit #5: Talking Down To Clients

It is your responsibility to explain all financial concepts in an accessible and easy-to-understand manner, taking into consideration that some people might not be as financially savvy as you are. Perhaps if they were, they wouldn’t need a financial advisor in the first place. Don’t be patronizing or condescending, and never talk down to your clients.

Bad Habit #6: Denying Second Opinion

Financial advisors who refuse to allow a custodian to provide a second opinion on the recommended course of action will instantly make the client doubt your honesty and integrity. It is common for clients to procure advice from a third pair of eyes which is understandable as their financial security is at stake.

Bad Habit #7: Ignoring Client’s Partner

Ignoring your client’s partner is a no go for successful financial advisors. Making their better half feel invisible and/or not asking for their opinions and feedback will make you seem rude, disrespectful and unprofessional. It is essential to keep in mind that it’s not uncommon for widowed clients to change their financial advisors because they have been ignored for years by them.

Bad Habit #8: Pushing Clients into Partnerships

Coercing your clients into partnerships in which you are the general partner – such as private real estate ventures – is a toxic move due to the conflict of interest. This is because if and when things go south, as a general partner, you are typically in a much more favourable position than your client.

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