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Productive People

5 Skills the Most Productive People Have Mastered

If there’s one thing I learned from building and maintaining a successful financial services business, it is how to master a handful of important skills, which can be applied to nearly all professions, but most importantly to advisors.

1. Ego

Humility is one of the strongest character traits a leader can possess. There is nothing worse than an advisor who walks into a client meeting with an inflated ego and inability to listen.

Clients won’t be impressed with your portfolio or client roster if you’re not listening to their unique needs or demonstrate a genuine interest in them. The financial services industry is notoriously egotistical — not surprising when the primary consideration is money, money, money.

My family, friends and faith keep me humble. Consider what keeps you grounded and hold them close.

2. Time Management

The biggest and most common error people make in managing their time is operating with a sense of extreme urgency or panic. The idea is always how much can I get done in the shortest amount of time.

This is mentality not only adds unnecessary stress but will also sacrifice the quality of your work. It makes more sense to take your time and dedicate your full attention once so that you can save more time in the long run.

Time management is also about prioritizing what is most important and getting those things done first. Finally, never be afraid to ask for support; there is power in numbers, and you don’t always have to do everything yourself.

3. Serving Others

Financial advisors are meant to help others; the nature of our profession is to serve our clients, not our own interests. If your priority as a financial advisor is only to make a ton of money for yourself, you will inevitably fail.

Money is a byproduct of exceptional service and will come if you do your due diligence and take care of your clients.

Serving others also includes your team. Servant leadership means investing your time, energy and money into your team, to help them achieve their greatest potential.

Consider how mentorship programs, trainings, performance reviews and so on can better your employees and, as a result, your business.

4. Sales

Sales are the lifeblood of your company; if your business isn’t growing, it’s dying. You can be the best communicator, leader, team player, marketer, etc., but if you can’t close a sale, everything else is moot.

5. Know Yourself

Know your strengths, as much as you know your weaknesses. Never stop growing and learning. No matter how many years I’ve spent in the industry, I am always learning and challenging myself to become better, do better.

When I wrote my book, it was the most challenging endeavor I’ve ever undertaken, but it was so worth it. I pushed myself to achieve a goal totally out of my realm of comfort and was eventually rewarded with the fruits of my labor, both professionally and personally.

Don’t be afraid of a challenge, a struggle. Recognize the opportunities in failure and be humble in your successes.

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5 Skills the Most Productive People Have Mastered
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Want to build and maintain a successful financial services firm? Learn the five skills you need to master to be highly productive.
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