If you own a business you need to have method for identifying, hiring, and supervising professional advisors you hire. I believe the following points are important.
I’ve had a principle I’ve used for the past 40 years. I pretend I’m personally responsible for everything that happens in my life. There are obviously things that happen that I don’t control. At the same time I’ve found that if I pretend I could have influence over these events I’ll think about them differently.
Being responsible means I’ll learn more. If I’m responsible for what happens in my life it’s very difficult for me to be angry with others when things go wrong. It’s not their fault and sometimes it’s not even my fault. If I’m responsible I get to ask the question, “What did I learn?” It’s the answer to this question that helps me keep moving forward.
A niche is not a market segment. For example, if you’re in the financial services business and you say your niche is someone who has $500,000 in investable assets, you have no niche. What you have is a market segment. If instead you said that my niche is someone who is 55 years old and has worked in a particular industry at a particular group of companies, you now have a niche.
When you describe to others what your niche is they will immediately understand what you’re talking about. Some of the benefits you get from understanding and staying with a niche are:
Here are some ways that I’ve learned to learn new things that are either free or cost very little:
Find a little known author you like and give them a call. I often have very interesting conversations with authors who are not best sellers, but have written books I find very interesting. Often these calls turn into friendships that have ongoing conversations where I get to learn from an expert.
In the early 80’s I took a variety of seminars that helped me smooth out some of my rough edges. These programs helped me realize there is more in the world than me. One of the best was a program that was put together by Marshall Thurber called Money and You.
In this program Marshall introduced a poem that has been above my desk for almost thirty years. I look at and read this poem at least once a week. Every time I read it I’m reminded that starting is often the most important ingredient in success.
One of the least understood assets you have is the intellectual property that lives in your business and mind. When we as advisors help our business owner clients not only understand, but also monetize their intellectual property we provide a great service they rarely get anywhere else.
Sandie Maynard and I recently attended our certification program for Sudden Money®. We spent two days working with others in our profession who realize that this is an issue where financial planners and financial planning plays a very important role.
Most of us will face transitions and many of these transitions cause significant changes in our life. Susan Bradley the founder and elder of The Sudden Money Institute® has a saying I really like.
Have you ever had the experience where you wish someone would just take over and make a decision for you? Does it seem that we’re having so many choices that making a decision becomes a huge chore?
I believe that part of the problem we have with making decisions is that we’re not sure how the decisions we’re making fit in with our lives. We haven’t done a good job of answering what’s important and why it’s important.