By Certified Coach Alissa Gauger, MBA
Have you ever noticed how humans take actions that are not aligned with what they really want? For example, did you observe people (maybe you!) over the holidays eating cookies while talking about health goals? If you are getting outcomes (or not getting outcomes) with prospecting, it may be that you have not set an intention that you can really line your actions up with.
There are multiple ways to approach your prospecting. For example, react as it comes, set goals or set intention. The most powerful is intention. You can set a goal to ask for a certain number of referrals or you can set an intention to transform your practice by strategically asking the right people for a specific type of referral. If you are unsatisfied with who you are attracting, are you cloning the wrong client and at the same time wondering what is going wrong? (Eating lots of cookies and baffled at your weight gain!)
Here are some ways to change your outcomes:
1) First, figure out who you genuinely connect with and WANT to work with. What type of person do you look forward to working with and causes you to really enjoy your day? (Don’t think about your current practice while you imagine this. It’s wide open. You can work with anybody you wish.)
2) Next, give this Ideal Client a name such as “Suzy and Bob.” Again, really get specific on all of the attributes of the couple—what do they for a living, do they have children, where do they live, what is their HHI, how do they spend their spare time, etc.
3) Then, describe and name your existing client who is important to your practice right now, but is not the client you want to attract going forward. Give this client a name such as “Joe and Sarah.” Again, really get specific on all of the attributes of the couple—what do they eat for breakfast!
4) Create a visual of your Ideal Client to help set your intention. Open a Pinterest account, make it private and pin “images" of Suzy and Bob under a board called “Ideal Client." Really get to know them! (You can also get a piece of poster board, some scissors, magazines and a glue stick and do this same exercise.)
5) Now, write out your intention moving forward. For example: My intention is to grow my practice by attracting clients that are committed to a healthy financial lifestyle, have interesting careers and hobbies, have a good sense of humor and really want to partner with me. They have a HHI of $XXX, are career-oriented, give back to the community and are planning to have children in 3-5 years. I will actively seek out my ideal client so that my practice will now grow in a new and exciting direction. I will genuinely enjoy this new direction that I choose. My career feels exciting and sustainable.
6) If you wish to work with Suzy and Bob then only ask for referrals from your Ideal Clients.
7) If you don’t have Ideal Clients…go find them! What are you waiting for? If you are staring at your QSs and feeling deflated, toss the list out and start fresh. Do not keep calling and emailing the same people over and over. It will drain you and waste your time.
8) Now that you have more time without your de-energizing list, go back through all of your existing clients and see who you might want to reach out to to ask for referrals from. Here are some ideas: who sent you a holiday card, who remembers your birthday, who follows your recommendations, who calls you for advice, who do you look forward to seeing, who has given you great QSs in the past, who likes to help you?
Design your ideal practice instead of letting your practice happen to you.