Stockbrokers are in desperate need of reinventing themselves. Why? There are many reasons in today's ever-changing market, but our research on affluent investor expectations provides two statistically significant reasons they should change.
1) Affluent investors do not want a salesperson advising them on their finances.
2) Affluent investors view stockbrokers as salespeople.
Brokers, your marching orders are obvious - raise your game. Many of you are doing what you have always done: acting and thinking like salespeople. That's how you were trained initially. Plus, many years of functioning in this mode have programmed your subconscious mind accordingly.
Raising your game goes beyond creating a fee-based business, developing a new brochure, branding yourself and upgrading your technology. You need to begin thinking, acting and feeling like a true solutions provider, a knowledge worker and a financial consultant who specializes in serving affluent investors. As important as it is to reinvent yourself from stockbroker to consultant, it's even more important to believe internally that you are changed.
Radical change like you undertake when you reinvent yourself is not an arena for the timid. It requires the capacity to believe without proof, to venture outside your comfort zone and to play without a net. You must fight off the devilish seeds of doubt and leave the world of the familiar to go to the wild unknown. Once there, you must stay for 18 months to make certain your subconscious mind has had time to accept the reinvention. That's what it will take to change your self-image.
If history is any indicator, only a courageous few in any era or culture have been this radical. Most people resist change, remaining controlled by a self-image that limits growth and development. Victimized by low self-image, few people succeed in maximizing their potential. Likewise, odds are only a few brokers will be radical enough to develop a business that succeeds in the 21st century. But this elite few will enjoy unparalleled success.
Self-image trails accomplishment. So prepare yourself for an 18-month journey that will be fraught with "snap-back" pitfalls that threaten your best intentions. Some will be well disguised and others will be obvious. Regardless, these minor psychological challenges are easily overcome if you remain committed to radical change. Stick with it, and you will have a tremendous impact on your financial health and that of your clients.
participant in one of my recent workshops suggested we start referring to parabrokers as "para-advisers." The point made by this broker turned adviser was right on the money.
If you're going to commit to radical change and reinventing yourself professionally, you need to include your parabroker in the process.
Your challenge is to make certain your assistant is actively involved in your transition every step of the way. I've found that dedicated support people are often catalysts for change, holding their broker counterparts accountable for staying the course.
Are you both being radical enough? How about a para-adviser with a CFP? Or what about a fully licensed practice manager who supervises your entire business? Think radical, act radical, involve your assistant and you will both be on a winning team.