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Two Ways New Financial Advisors Can Cope with Failure (second in a 2 part series)

In my previous post on What to do with Failure?, I mentioned that new financial advisors tend either to internalize their failures (it is always my fault) or to externalize their failures (it is always the prospect’s fault).  How do we resist the urge to feel overwhelmed (with a sense of self-loathing) or misunderstood (All these people just can’t get it right)?  Those who tend toward internalizing will need to travel by one road, and those who blame others will need to travel by a different road.

For New Financial Advisors who Internalize

There is no going around this mountain. There are tough lessons here to be learned, and the only way past this mountain is to go through it traveling the path of pain.  You will most likely experience adversity when trying to set appointments.  For some, you will be fortunate enough to be assigned some orphan clients who have a relationship with the company.  For others you will need to build rapport through calling a list or by phoning friends and family.  To many this will seem like an exercise in torture at first.  But, it gets easier.  Once you find this not so painful you will move on to the next step.  People who stand you up for appointments.

You may travel to their house to find that the prospects are not there, or you will find that the prospect insists on a 7:30 PM meeting at the office and then fails to show.  Again, you endure this a few times and you find that it isn’t the end of the world.  You graduate to setbacks dealt to you by Compliance or by Underwriting or by predecessor companies who do not transfer money quickly enough, etc.  The point here is that you probably need to experience losses in each of these areas a few times before you are able to shrug it off as being not such a big deal.  The problem that new financial advisors face is getting surprised by these setbacks when they least expect it.

For New Financial Advisors who Externalize

The number one work that I can offer here is ownership.  Chances are pretty good that everyone else is not the problem.  You screw up, too. Own it. The only way for you to get the benefit from your experience is to admit that you had some part in this two-person dance’s not working.  Once you are able to reach this hurdle, you can then see more clearly what steps you could have taken to save the deal.

Final Words

In this article I provided more depth on what new financial advisors can do to recover from failure.  In my next article I will introduce a third response – making note of what happened, and then moving on.  Remember that resilience is one muscle that can not be built without use.  No one can do this for you, and you can’t get better at it by reading a book or watching a video.  Resilience is best developed through hardship.