Change is hard, eh?
But what if your life depended on it?
It was mid-November and Lynn and I were sailing back from the Greek Islands to Sicily. The wind had just died, leaving a bumpy sea, and we were motoring approximately 100 miles offshore.
Suddenly there was a loud bang. Our yacht, Spellbound, shuddered. Then her engine came to a complete stop. That’s not a good feeling when you’re 100 miles offshore, with no wind, and you’re drifting towards a major shipping lane!
First I checked the engine room. No sign of trouble there. But the engine just would not start.
We must have hit something. There was only one thing for it: I had to go into the water and check the propeller.
So, down into the cold sea I went and, peering into the darkness, with over two miles of water below me, I spotted the problem. The propeller was tangled in a huge mass of yellow.
At first I thought it was a fishing net, but on closer inspection was a giant offcut of commercial fishing rope, more than six inches in diameter and multi-plaited, consisting of thousands of individual threads.
There was only one thing for it! Somehow I had to get under the boat and cut through it - but I’m not a strong swimmer, nor a big fan of snorkelling.
However, this was no time for fear; it had to be done. So, I attached Lynn's best bread knife to my boathook and, for more than two hours, underneath 32 tons of boat that was rising and falling in the waves, I worked under Spellbound to remove the tangled mess.
The picture below shows the size of the rope.
Job done. I was exhausted, but what a relief!
Why am I telling you this...?
Well, this made Lynn secretly think it was a great idea to book me on an Open Water SCUBA diving course for my 60th birthday in June 2019!
But she knows I hate the thought of diving under water. In fact, I freak out when a little saltwater enters my goggles when just snorkelling on the surface!
So Lynn was understandably a little nervous when she announced my special gift as we were anchored in our favourite Greek Island, Skyros. My face must have been a picture!
But it was a gift! So I had to follow through with the course...
Within a few lessons Vasilis, the instructor, had got me taking off my goggles completely, under water. In fact he got me taking off all my gear, and putting it back on, 40 feet underwater!
I’m now a Certified Open-Water Diver – achieved in seven training dives and around four hours of underwater instruction. And I’m addicted. I dived every day for three weeks after!
So what's my point....?
How did I master these new skills so quickly?
How was I able to conquer my fears?
How did I break bad habits?
One reason: because my life depended on it!
Breaking old habits...
When you learn to SCUBA dive your life depends on your quickly breaking old habits and creating new ones. If you don’t, you could die. It’s as simple as that.
It means you take the need to change very seriously. In order to change, you commit, you learn, you practise, you succeed. Or, you get out of the water, never to return, missing out on a whole new, amazing adventure.
Right now, advisers need to change. They need to change from being primarily money and investment focused to being truly life centred – where the focus is their clients’ lives, not their clients’ money.
The financial aspect of everything advisers do is quickly becoming commoditised. Technology will be the death of traditional financial and investment-based advisers, just as it has been for travel agents and record shops. It’s just a matter of time.
Yet it seems to me most advisers are refusing to accept this; holding on to a money focused service proposition that, in many cases, is not worth the money that is being charged for it.
In the US, things are changing fast. The one per cent of assets under administration charging model is under threat. There are the likes of Vanguard Personal Advisor Services, with its hybrid model delivering full investment management and financial planning with access to a Certified Financial Planner for just 30 basis points all in. Others like Schwab are offering all this too, but for free. Technology is changing things.
Life first, money second
Now is the time to deliver what a computer algorithm could never deliver. It’s time to connect with clients about what matters most; understanding what their money is for and aligning it with their life. Life first, money second.
The bottom line...
I’m often told by advisers they have every intention of changing – they want to deliver a more meaningful service. They want to secure their fees by delivering more value and better client outcomes; they want to adopt a lifestyle financial planning service proposition; they want to change their client conversations, to ask better questions; they want to adopt comprehensive cashflow modelling software; they want to help clients see where they are heading financially; they want to keep the focus on what matters most, to help clients get a better return on life, not just a better return on their investments....
They do want to change.
But, they say…
...they are finding it hard to do so.
That’s because they haven’t realised yet:
...their life depends on it!
Are you ready to change?
Are you ready to adopt and communicate (really really well) a life centered lifestyle financial planning service proposition that you and your clients can truly and totally believe in?
Need a little help?
I'll send you two free books* to help you STAND OUT from the crowd by communicating a service that you and your clients can be proud of. *T&C apply.
Small print: Offer intended only for advisors with passion, spirit and derring do, who want to get inspired about their work by putting their clients lives at the very center of the conversation.
Offer also intended for advisors who may have lost their mojo; or have often thought: "THERE MUST BE A BETTER WAY!" of communicating and delivering financial planning and financial advice.
Offer NOT intended for advisors whose interest lies only in selling financial products and investments and building AUM.