Ten Habits of Successful Advisors

July 29, 2014

by Jennifer Geoghegan

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I regularly meet advisors who, upon learning that I coach advisors, ask me about the “silver bullet” – the one thing that will help them grow more successfully. I have to regretfully break the news that there is no silver bullet. So how do successful advisors grow their businesses on a consistent basis? It comes down to habits.

Successful advisors, without even realizing it, have developed a set of habits that they repeat day in and day out that leads to their achievements.

Many of you have probably read Charles Duhigg’s bestseller, The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do In Life And Business. In it, Duhigg outlines the three-step neurological process that helps you create a good habit or break a bad one. The process is initiated by a cue that triggers the behavior or routine so you receive a reward. A cue for initiating your business development work could be a time of day, triggered by a calendar reminder or a weekly team meeting. Rewards will also vary by advisor. One may choose to take 15 minutes to surf the web to read the news after some prospecting activities. Another might choose to leave work early one day to watch their kid’s hockey game.

What are the tactical habits you can introduce to make business development a larger part of your new routine? Here are 10 habits that I have seen some leading advisors adopt as behaviors that have helped them consistently grow their practices:

  1. Start with high energy: Increase the chances of success by starting the day with high energy. Exercise early in the day, eat a healthy breakfast and start your day with prospecting activities, while your energy is high.
  2. Schedule it: I know some advisors who schedule time for prospecting every morning of every day. Others schedule it once a week on the same day and time. Still others move the time around each week based on their schedules. Regardless of when you do it, put it on your calendar to make sure you do it.
  3. Stay focused: It is too easy to simply respond to emails and phone calls all day long, without getting any of our priorities accomplished. Try responding to emails for an hour at the beginning of your day and again just once later in the day. Use the rest of the time to focus on priorities that truly make a difference.

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