Communication

Know Your Client’s Trust Levels

Last week I was working with one of our Certified Wealth Mentors with my role to offer some behavioral insights on some difficult client cases. The cases were difficult because of the clients attitudes not only to financial decision-making but also to life. These cases reaffirmed to me how much trust is core to all dimensions of every client situation. This is why when we redeveloped our DNA personality system in the past year we made trust a new stand-alone personality factor.

Often when we talk about trust it is in the context of our role as trusted advisor and building open relationships with clients. Certainly, this is an important dimension. Talking about trust in this way is fine. However, the heart of truly understanding trust and to knowing our clients is to know where trust comes from. There are a number of very important dimensions to trust that we all need to know. Let me ask you the question: How much do you trust yourself? Trusting yourself is the starting point of building sound relationships and also making sound decisions. Your own level of personal trust will determine whether you will trust others and then whether others will trust you. So, if you want to know whether your clients will trust you, reflect on your own level of self trust and then learn about their self trust.

We all have a natural level of trust which comes with our natural DNA behavioral style and then there are life experiences added on top which deepen or reduce our trust levels. The more we know who we are and have personal confidence then the more likelihood that we will trust.

In one of the client cases I was referring to the client was 60 years old with a very successful business and over $10 million to his name and annual income of over $2 million. However, he was personally unhappy, not prepared to let go of the iron grip on his business or prepared to create an estate plan his family could know about or be involved in. Does this sound familiar? This is a client who has very low personal trust levels and it transcends every part of his life. It will be very hard for this advisor to get close and really provide the advice he needs and on the other side the advisor will find it hard to meet expectations. A no win situation.

Have you seen people make fear based decisions and not be transparent? This starts from low personal trust levels. As a service provider you want to know your clients trust levels early if you are going to have a close and profitable relationship. You will never be able to help this type of person until you can discover the source of the fear. The difficulty is getting them to tell you. I do find that when you can get a client to talk about their strengths and passions you have a much greater chance of unlocking the fear, and trust grows from there.

Cricket DNA – Transforming the Lives of Cricketers Worldwide

As many people know I have a very deep passion for cricket. My love of cricket even strongly rivals my passion for the DNA Behavior business. So, why not put the two together? That is what I have done this year by launching the Cricket DNA discovery program with the Cricket Academy of the USA. Last week we had the teams and coaches participating in the American College Cricket Championships complete their DNA personality profiles.

This is the manifestation of a life long dream for me – to be able to blend my passion for cricket with a life purpose of educating people worldwide to learn about who they are for improving the quality of their life. Being Australian I never expected to launch this program while living in the United States.

Raghu Misra, founder of the Cricket Academy is aiming to make cricket a game of choice for American students of all ages from the age of 7 to 21. Few know that cricket was one of America’s earliest sports being imported by the British. Even George Washington and John Adams played. A key focus of the Academy is the personal development of the players. We believe that the differentiators of sportsmen should be their talent and the ability to manage their emotions, and not simply having the best technology and facilities. Ultimately, this inside-out approach leads to greater sustainable sporting performance and development of life skills.

In building the Cricket DNA discovery process everything that has been learned from our broader DNA Behavior research has been drawn upon. The unique approach of DNA Behavior is to have all cricket players complete their Cricket DNA Personality Profile online to learn more about their talents and also struggles, which if unchecked could get in the way of success. Research and experience shows that when a person combines both their talents with passions they can achieve great results and also build great team relationships through better understanding others. Of course, this leads to greater enjoyment from the game and overall commitment to excel.

Further, the DNA Behavior methodology extends to the coaches. It is absolutely crucial the coaches complete their profiles and talk about them with the team. Team success really increases when there is a high degree of trust between the coach and players. If the player-coaching relationship is broken then failure and disruptive behaviors will not be far away.

These same principles apply in all walks of life whether it be business, personal relationships, sports, the arts and so on.

Visit Cricket DNA for more information: http://www.cricketdna.com

Do You Know Who Your Clients Are?

No matter the industry, providers of products and services are always saying something to the effect of: “You are blind as to who is going to walk in the front door for their first meeting with you. As you work with the client a bit you have a greater collection of knowledge but still not the whole picture. It can still take 10 years or more to really know who you are dealing with”. Do you truly know the life and financial motivations of your clients? Their deepest desires? Do you know their risk tolerance? Do you know what types of products and services they want?

The reality is that most providers of products and services know very little about their clients. For the first few hours from meeting the client research shows that less than 10% is known about the client and in the medium term less than 20%. How much better off would the client and the provider be if more was known earlier?

The question I have is: why don’t product and service providers seek to find out more about their clients? One reason is that it is hard and we do not have the time. So, the key is finding a way to quickly and non-invasively get the information you want and make the client feel understood. The process must be mutual.

Our “inside out” process for serving clients is below. Most providers start at step 3 – the product providing point. Whereas starting at step 1 is key – understanding the client’s life and financial motivations. Step 2 is to demonstrate empathy by communicating on the clients terms, and then step 3 is to match the DNA of the client to the right product. Finally, step 4 is to guide the client to make the right choices.

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If you want to get started on this process, please go to www.dnabehaviormarketing.com and take our complimentary Communication DNA profile. Then you can see how to bring this process into your business to get to know your clients at a deeper level much more quickly for a more productive outcome.

Business Transformation

In recent weeks we have strongly focused our messaging around “business transformation”. In particular, the need to address the client experience that is being provided in order to transform. So often, leaders regularly talk about getting the right people on board, developing the team and the leadership, having the right product, focusing the business plan, improving execution etc. These are all important dimensions; however, they are not all of it.

The key to business transformation is increasing the level of engagement of both your clients and employees. This is regardless of what business you are in or the nature of the service being provided. In 2009, there was some very compelling Gallup Research supporting this approach. This is illustrated by the graph below and the following key points:

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When we interview businesses, so many readily admit they know less than 20% about their client. What would happen if they knew more than 50% about their clients? So, from an implementation perspective we believe it is key to know more about your clients. Then deliver a client centered experience by aligning your products and services to the client and then having employees who are client focused. This transformation in the alignment of your clients, employees and products can be achieved through predictive DNA behavioral insights. This is the fundamental purpose of our DNA Behavior Marketing system and Business DNA programs.

Advisor Trust

The theme at this week’s FPA Conference in Anaheim centered on trust. Becoming the trusted advisor is not a new idea however, it is increasingly talked about.

The question is how do you become the trusted advisor? How do you accelerate trust in your advisory relationships, and for that matter in any relationship?

Building trust is directly related to how you behave in relation to others. What many do not know is that the starting point for trust starts with your behavior. If you do not trust yourself, then you will not trust others and others will not trust you. What we have learned from research is that some people are not naturally wired not to trust and hence will always have more inherent difficulty in building trusted relationships. So, these skeptical people have to be more conscious in developing trust with clients (and their team).

Interestingly, based on our extensive behavioral profiling of financial advisors, over 70% of them would be low on trust or more skeptical. So, why do you think there is such a lack of trust of our industry, and now being trusted is being valued so much? It is also fair to say that being completely trusting as a person can be naive. Some skepticism is reasonable so long as it is healthy.

Now, you need to address how you are going to improve your level of trust. The first step is gaining clarity of who you are, your talents and your life purpose. When you have the personal confidence to be who you are your fears start going away and generally trust builds. We help people through this step by having them firstly take the Business DNA Natural Talents Profile.
The second step is to uncover your client relationship management performance. We do this by having you take the AdvisorTRUST 360 Profile. In essence, the profile is a behavioral client performance evaluation. The process involves you rating yourself and having at least 3 clients each rating you on 75 performance items across the following 7 key areas:

1. Communication
2. Results
3. Relationships
4. Emotional Intelligence
5. Trust
6. Advisory values
7. Advisory competence

The profile report identifies areas of strength where you are positively building trust with clients and areas where further development is required.

With this information a coaching program can be put in place to help you improve your trust and level of client satisfaction. The reality is that every person will have performance aspects needing development across these 7 areas. Even those who inter personally may naturally build strong trust could be lower in demonstrating advisory trust in terms of the results and processes side of their service delivery.

If you would like to learn more and participate in the AdvisorTrust 360 Profile please contact us at inquiries@businessdnaresources.com

New DNA Behavioral Solutions to Accelerate TRUST and Your Relationships

At the moment, more than ever, the whole notion of trust in every aspect of our lives is important. For many, trust is very low, if not shattered, with our leaders, advisors, partners and family members. Furthermore, trust in ourselves is low, which is the core of the issue. If your business and personal relationships are not working as well as you would like, or your performance could improve, see whether it is because your trust is low. Relationships of trust depend on our willingness to look not only to our own interests but also to the interests of others. ? Peter Farquharson

My starting point with trust is always to ask 3 questions: How much do you trust others? Do you feel others trust you? Importantly, do you trust yourself?

When you reflect on these questions, the foundation of trust comes back to whether you trust yourself. The answer to the other 2 questions will be determined by the answer to this question. Firstly, trusting yourself is a foundational life issue. Trust impacts your level of confidence to be who you are, to perform to your maximum potential and then how positively you relate to others. Importantly, when relating to others, your level of personal trust will impact the ability to be open, transparent, mutual and generally act in their best interests. If you act with a low level of trust (even though you may not be aware of it), you will trigger distrust from the other person.

There are many factors that contribute to whether a person trusts themself. Let me be clear, when I am talking about trust, I am not just referring to character or integrity. Our research has shown that your propensity to trust is influenced by both natural hard-wired behaviors and learned behaviors developed from life experiences.

This is why our firm, DNA Behavior International, has launched a new series of behavioral development tools focused on accelerating trust:

  • LeadershipTRUST for business leaders and managers
  • AdvisorTRUST for financial and professional services professionals
  • FamilyTRUST for family members and their advisors

The approach we are adopting through these innovative tools to help you build trust is to firstly uncover your natural propensity to trust, based on your natural hard-wired behavior. This behavior is the core of who you are, and was shaped from birth to when you were approximately 3 years old. For some, high or low levels of trust are relatively ingrained. Therefore, the challenge becomes to work on trusting yourself more. Then our TRUST tools are used to help discover your ability to build trust in specific areas based on:

  • Communication
  • Achieving Results
  • Building Relationships
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Trust Building Skills
  • Values
  • Competence

These TRUST tools have a 360 rating system, enabling you to assess yourself and have others rate you as well. This will help uncover your blind-spots, which we all have. In the end, with greater self knowledge your personal confidence will increase and so will your trust. If you want to learn more, please email us at inquiries@financialdna.com