Lara sits down with Brendan Frazier, the founder of Wired Planning, to discuss the two questions you should ask your clients during your intro meeting: What prompted this meeting? And why now?
Financial advisors often follow traditional methods and teachings in their profession. However, it’s crucial to recognize that the conventional approach may not always prioritize the most effective communication with clients. It’s time to shift in perspective, where advisors focus on delivering the right message and guidance to truly benefit their clients.
The initial introduction meeting with a client is the “lifeblood” of your business. It sets the tone for your relationship and can make or break the future collaboration.
One of the biggest mistakes advisors can make is to wing it in their first intro meeting. Instead, have a clear and defined framework for guiding your conversation.
Lara sits down with Brendan Frazier, the founder of Wired Planning, to discuss the two questions you should ask your clients during your intro meeting: What prompted this meeting? And why now?
Remember, a well-structured initial meeting can set the stage for a successful and mutually beneficial relationship.
In this episode, you’ll learn key concepts on:
Brendan Frazier is the founder of Wired Planning, the host of The Human Side of Money podcast, a keynote speaker, and was named one of Investopedia’s Top 100 Financial Advisors in 2021 and 2022. He’s building a global community and training program for advisors to master the human side of advice, enhance their clients’ lives, and forever change the trajectory of their business.
Voiceover: [00:00:00] Welcome to the FAST Podcast, Financial Advisor Strategy Talks with Lara Galloway, SVP of Channel Management at White Glove. Lara provides advisors with an opportunity to hear from some of the best minds in the business. Follow along to learn quick tips to help you grow your business from gaining new leads to keeping current clients engaged and everything in between.
Now onto the show.
Aric Johnson: Hello, and welcome to the FAST Podcast with your host, Lara Galloway from White Glove. Lara, you look like an angel. I just want to say that out loud.
Lara Galloway: And I was singing beforehand, but I'm going to spare you this time.
Aric Johnson: Well, can you tell people why your set looks so good today?
Lara Galloway: Well, it's because don't take this the wrong way, Brendan, but I have one of my favorite behavioral finance crushes on the podcast today. So, I am super excited to be bringing on Brendan Frazier. And let me just tell you a little bit about Brendan before we get started. So [00:01:00] Brendan is the Founder of Wired Planning and the host of the Human Side of Money podcast, which is phenomenal.
And I really enjoy listening to myself. I learn a ton every time I do. He's a keynote speaker. And he was named one of Investopedia's top 100 financial advisors in 2021 and 2022, something to be very proud of. He's building a global community and training program for advisors to master the human side of advice, enhance their clients’ lives, and forever change the trajectory of their business.
I mean, that's one of the best bios I've ever read on this podcast. So, I'm so excited to welcome you to the FAST Podcast, Brendan. Thanks for being here.
Brendan Frazier: Well, I really appreciate you saying that because I was sending my bio to a couple of people just yesterday, looking at it, thinking like, I really need to add some things to this.
I need to make it sound a little better, add some accolades or credentials in there. What can I do? And I was feeling a little bit stressed and insecure about it. So, the fact that you said that it feels good in the moment, especially considering this was just yesterday when I was [00:02:00] looking at it going, all right, I got to beef this thing up a little bit.
How am I going to do it? I don't know.
Lara Galloway: I mean, this speaks pretty well, and it reads well. So, I didn't stumble over trying to say what you are. I didn't have to read a bunch of little acronyms at the end. I appreciate it. Thank you for not giving me the alphabet soup.
Brendan Frazier: Well, I am very excited to be here.
When you reached out, this was well, this isn't a term I came up with, but it's what I like to call a no brainer decision. So, I always enjoy coming on here and, on these podcasts, and talking about things that I'm passionate about and sounds like you're passionate about too.
So, I'm excited.
Lara Galloway: Yeah. Well, so just to set the stage I saw you speak at SHIFT and that's when I was just like, oh my goodness. And I'd been following you online for a while, but hearing you speak was really, really powerful and just hearing the difference. The way you take some complex behavioral finance ideas that sound lofty and really wise and make them super simple is amazing.
And one of the things that you do so well on LinkedIn is you make very simple posts. You guys should all [00:03:00] follow him if you're listening right now. Make sure you're following Brendan on LinkedIn because he says, as you go into client meetings today, here are a couple things to think of. And he just, you know, you list one or two or three little simple ideas that if an advisor puts this in their mindset, that's the mindset they have going into client meetings.
They're going to do better. And I just, I love how simple that is, but the thing that really got me and I'm going to let you totally promote the heck out of this because I really want everybody to know about it and why I knew I could hook you into the podcast was saying, Hey, you're promoting something about the ultimate guide to intro meetings, I think, right?
Is that what it's called?
Brendan Frazier: Yeah, it was just the ultimate intro meeting.
Lara Galloway: So, I said, oh my god, Brendan, at White Glove, we bring in these advisors who are guest presenters at educational financial workshops all across the country. That's what we do. We set them up to be presenters at a financial education workshop where they're going to help [00:04:00] people learn things they need to know about finances.
And then these people turn into prospects. They sign up for meetings with the advisor one on one. That's our whole goal is to help them get those meetings established. And then the advisor takes it from there. But how? And I've just been reading your stuff and I thought, this is something that our workshop hosts come back and say to us all the time.
Like, look, I'm doing the workshops. I'm a good presenter. I'm getting good leads. I'm getting people that are interested, but I'm not good at the meetings. I'm a great advisor. I'm very smart. I'm very talented. And I understand the complexities of the market and all this stuff, but getting it into a good meeting and helping my clients feel good and trust me and all that kind of stuff.
It's hard. So that's the genesis of all this. That's the background and why I wanted to have you today. And I just wanted to kind of start off by asking you, what is it about that intro meeting that is so important? What makes it such a [00:05:00] make it or break it for an advisor?
Brendan Frazier: Yeah. Well, it's funny, everything you just said is what I hear and have heard for years and years about that meeting, which is like, I know how important it is.
I know the things that I should do. I need to nail this so that I can actually work with them on the complexities, the financial planning and advice stuff that I do so well. But like at the end, I would hear advisors say, you know, they'd walk out and they'd be like, I don't really know.
I don't know exactly how they felt like that went. I hope that I hear from them. I didn't like the way that I felt. After those meetings, like it always felt really inconsistent or unpredictable but every now and then everybody listening, everybody that's met with the prospect before has also had meetings where you sit there and you go, man.
That went really, really well. I wish every meeting could be like that. Obviously, they trust me. They opened up, they told me everything they needed to know. They clearly saw the value that I could provide and they're ready to become a client right here at the end of that meeting. And you sit there and you're like, I wish every meeting was like [00:06:00] that, right?
We've all had that meeting. And then you contrast that to the hangover feeling that you get from those other meetings that don't go that way. And the thought is like, how can I create or maybe even reverse engineer those meetings that I want to have every time to actually have them every time.
And so that's kind of where this idea came from was let's go in and figure out what are the things that make those meetings, the ones that you want to have every time so successful and let's reverse engineering back into it and say, what happens in those meetings that we could transport and try to do in every single meeting so not that you can literally make it happen every single time.
That's not possible. In fact, if I figured out the formula for that, I probably wouldn't be here right now because I'd be on an island somewhere making loads and loads of money for a hundred percent conversion rate. But there are things that we can do to make it the best meeting possible.
And I also want to say this based on what you said, which is what you just described that situation where you go, Hey, I've got this workshop, this financial education workshop, and I'm helping people, educating people. And then after the [00:07:00] workshop, that's where it's time to get them to become a call.
That's why I say that this intro meeting, the very first meeting that you have with somebody is the lifeblood of your business is because if you can have the best workshop of all time. You can do the best educating of all time, but once they come in and you meet with them, that's how if you can't help them, you can't do the financial planning work that you're so good at.
If you can't get them to actually become a client, right? So that's one of the things I say, that's why I call it the lifeblood of an advisory business. Because you can be great at marketing and workshops. You can be great at putting together plans and giving financial advice, but none of that matters if you can't get that person to actually become a client at the end of the day.
Lara Galloway: So, what are some of the biggest mistakes or struggles that you have honed in on that advisors who are aware, who want to do better intro meetings. I don't want the hangover. I want to replicate this really good feeling that I had in a meeting.
What are some of the mistakes they're making or the biggest struggles that you see them [00:08:00] challenged with?
Brendan Frazier: Yeah, and I want to be careful here because oftentimes what most advisors experience are, they go out and they do what they've been taught or trained to do. They do what they think they're supposed to do because it's been mapped out or modeled for them that way.
So, for example, I imagine most people listening, if we ask them, Hey, how do you go about your intro meeting, this first meeting with a prospect, they would say something like, well, in the beginning, I start off by talking a little bit, trying to create some rapport, build a connection. Then I'll ask him, what's important to them and what's on their mind.
And then I'll talk a little about my credentials and my expertise and the value that we provide, maybe even share a story of how we've helped somebody just like them. And at the end, I'm going to ask for the business and try to get them to move forward. It's like, that's sort of the pretty good outline, the basic framework that we're all taught at some level or to some degree.
So, when I say I want to be careful, what I want to be careful with, when we talk about mistakes is I don't think that it's advisors are just willingly [00:09:00] or blindly doing things wrong. I just think that the way that we've been trained and taught to do things for so long is backwards. And that's where the mistake is made is we're focusing on the wrong things.
In fact, the things that we do in these meetings would be completely anti what the research would tell you you're supposed to do in these meetings. So now I go back to answering your question. I just wanted to for anybody that's out there listening. We've all been there.
Lara Galloway: You're not making anybody wrong.
You're not bad and awful. It's just, this is exactly the way the industry has trained us. Right?
Brendan Frazier: That's right. That's exactly right. So, the main mistakes, the biggest one that I see, and it makes sense when you think about it, but the biggest one that I see when I talk to advisors is just simply winging it.
And when I say winging it, what I mean decent conversation is they go, they can have a conversation with somebody. But if I sit down and I asked 10 advisors, which I've asked more than 10 advisors, but I already know if I asked 10 advisors, Hey, what is it that you're going to ask the person in this meeting?
What questions are you going to ask them? What is it that you [00:10:00] hope to get out of it? How are you going to introduce the meeting? How are you going to close the meeting? They'll net, if I asked 10 advisors, they'll all give me an idea of what they're going to do a little bit. Well, so generally I do this and sometimes I'll do this and depending on how it goes, I'll do this, but that's why I call it winging it because there's no clear defining framework for how to guide the meeting or whenever I ask, what questions do you ask?
Like, I've got this bank of questions and I kind of just pull from it based on what I think makes sense. And so, I'm not saying that you should have a script. I'm not saying that you should only ask certain questions and just read as if it's an interrogation, but there's something to be said for going in knowing, Hey, I have a purpose for this meeting.
And if I have this set of questions, I know it's going to accomplish the purpose that I'm moving towards. It's going to accomplish what I'm trying to do. So, most advisors can go in. And in fact, I asked one advisor this.
I said, Hey, if you went into an intro meeting today on a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate it? And he said, an 8. And I said, all right, tell me about that. [00:11:00] And he goes, well, I know that I can do a good job talking to people, getting them to talk a little bit about their situation and their life. And then I can tell them what we do.
And then I said, okay, that's great. Now let me ask you a different question. Same question but asked in a different way. How confident are you on a scale 1 to 10 that after that meeting, that prospect would become a client? And he said, five. And so I said, okay, do you see where I'm getting at where I'm going with this?
And he said, yeah, I do. He's an 8 out of 10 as far as the ability to have a conversation with another human being because he goes in and wings it. But when it came down to, hey, is what you're doing going to actually get that person to become a client. It was a 5 out of 10 because he didn't have a clear defined approach or framework that he was taking into the meeting.
So that'd be the first thing I'd say, go ahead. I see it. Go ahead.
Lara Galloway: Well, I was just thinking like the way I heard you saying that it's the advisor rated his own performance. As an eight my delivery. I was good. I was engaged. I [00:12:00] was warm. I was friendly. I listened, you know, all that kind of stuff.
He rated his performance, but his results are different. And that like, that's such a good point, Brendan, because that's a huge disconnect that if you haven't actually articulated it that way before, it's like, yeah, I'm really good at these meetings. I always go through my stuff.
I've got it dialed in. I'm good at meetings. It's like, if I relate it to our workshops, like you can be a good presenter. Yeah. You got through the slides and you've said all the things you were supposed to say. You practice your script. You do it. You didn't flub like the way we might, you know, evaluate ourselves in terms of a performance, but there's something missing there. And I'd love for you to just dial in what is that missing piece between the eight and the five?
Brendan Frazier: Yeah. I mean, I think that's where I keep coming back to having a clearly defined framework of how you're going to guide the conversation. So not how you're going to sit there and do an interview or an interrogation and literally just ask these five questions in a row and [00:13:00] copy them down and move on to the next one.
But having a framework, which would to me, a framework is three to six questions that you're going to ask in every single one of these conversations, because these questions are aligned with the purpose of the meeting. And so, in other words, what's the main thing that I want to do in this meeting?
What's the purpose of the meeting? What is the feeling that I want this person to walk away with when they leave the meeting? And then once you get really clear on that, then you can decide what questions I should be asking in this meeting? So, here's an example of a way that you think through this.
So, I know there's a question out there that a lot of people like to ask. It's Hey, what was money like in your family growing up? What was money like for you? What was your first, earliest memory of money? So, I think that's a good question. When it's asked at the right time and so if the purpose of this intro meeting is to build some trust and connection and get the person to see the value that you provide so that they [00:14:00] want to move forward and work with you.
Then it looked at through that lens. That's no longer the right question. That's no longer a good question. Now, is it? It's still a good question. Just not for that meeting. It's probably a good question for another meeting or another conversation. And so that's what I mean when I say getting clear on what you want to do, what you're going to ask a framework for the conversation is saying what questions should I be asking to guide this conversation to where it needs to go.
So instead of thank you. What's your first memory around money? What was money like growing up? And I'm just picking on that question because I know that there's a lot of people that like to ask that question when they first meet somebody because it feels like you're building some sort of trust and connection because they're telling you something personal to them.
And I get that. I really do. I get the intention behind it. But there's other questions that don't work well in this meeting either. But everybody's kind of wondering, okay, well, that's good that that doesn't work. Well, what does work well, right? What should I be asking? I think the two best [00:15:00] questions you can ask in these meetings are what prompted this?
Like, what are we doing here? What prompted this? So, most people don't wake up in the middle of the night, or they don't wake up first thing in the morning and think, Hey, I have a full day next Wednesday, and the one thing that I want to do is go meet with a financial planner and advisor to get a fully comprehensive financial plan.
It just doesn't work that way. And I think most of us realize that, maybe a gut check for some. It's a little bit humbling to admit that sometimes. So, you always want to start out by asking, Hey, what is it that prompted this? We imagine that you probably didn't think of all the things that I could do today.
I want to meet with you and meet with a financial advisor. So, what prompted it? Because there's oftentimes a reason. I shouldn't say oftentimes. Almost always there's a reason why they've decided to spend their time there with you. Today, all right, so finding that out, getting them to open up and tell you about that.
But then there's another question that goes one step further that gives you even better information and you start creating a little bit of emotional connection. And when they tell you, don't just stop with when they tell you what [00:16:00] prompted it, but you want to go one step further and ask why now, in other words, so yes, I know what prompted it.
But you could have done this two years ago. You could have waited two months from now. But here we are today. I'm curious why not. So let me give you an example of what that sounded like. It's the one I give a lot because it's the one that's felt most relevant to me. It's from my own experience. So, I had a guy that called.
Said he wanted to meet. And I asked, well, hang on, he called, we started to meet. He came in and I asked him, Hey, what prompted this? Obviously, you didn't just decide that you would want to wake up and meet with a financial planner today. I'm guessing something was on your mind. He said, yeah, I need to start figuring out how to do a better job saving for retirement.
Okay. All right. Pretty basic. So, I asked a couple more questions around that. Like, okay. I hear that. I understand that. What have you started doing thus far? Well, nothing really at this point. I mean, that's why I'm calling is because I know that I need to start doing something because we got a little bit more money now that we can start putting away.
Okay, great. All right. So that gives me a little [00:17:00] bit of info, a little bit of insight, but where it got better and where the conversation went to the next level was when I started asking why now? So, then I said, okay, well, tell me this. Here we are today. You didn't call six months ago. I imagine you probably would have said you should have been saving six months ago.
You could be doing this three months from now, six months from now. Why are we here today? And he said, I love telling this story because it's such a good one and it helps you see the power of it. He goes, well, last week, I'm in Nashville by the way. So, a lot of music people here.
This guy works in concert management. And so, last week we were at a show and I saw this guy carrying these heavy boxes to set up the stage and he looked miserable and he knew the guy. So, he went up and talked to him and he said, Hey, you doing all right today? And he goes, no, I don't want to be here.
I'm tired of this. I don't want to do any more physical labor. I'm ready to get out. And he's like, well. Why are you still here? And he said, because I didn't start saving early enough, don't make the same [00:18:00] mistake that I made. And when I asked him, why are you calling now? He goes, because I realized that I didn't want to be the 73-year-old that hated his life, having to do heavy lifting when I would rather be hanging out and spending time with my family.
And it was this eye-opening moment because he wants to start saving for retirement. He was calling because he doesn't want to be the 73-year-old that hates his life because he's still working because he didn't start saving sooner. Right? And so, once you get to that and find out what's really going on, but really drove him there, not only is there an emotional connection made there, the driver of why they're there and it takes the relationship and the conversation to another level.
So that's my long way of saying I could go even more into the things to do. In the meeting, as opposed to winging it, but if I went in and just winged it. And said, all right, I'm going to go in today and ask the questions that feel right. Just kind of have a conversation like I would with any friend that I've known for 25 years.
I actually don't have that many friends for 25 [00:19:00] years. I'm not sure why I use that number, but any friend that I've known for a long time, then you kind of wing it. And I may not have gotten that out of him, right? That's my point is if I'd winged it, I don't know what the outcome would have been. If I have, for example, these two questions that I ask.
Every single time. I'm still curious. It's not scripted. I'm still curious to hear what they're going to say. I'm asking follow up questions, but it creates a more predictable outcome when you start asking when you're intentional about the questions that you're going to ask instead of going in and winging it saying, all right, let's see where this conversation goes.
Lara Galloway: Well, one thing I think is really cool about what you just said is a lot of people talk about when you go into that intro meeting, you've given a whole bunch of the standard playbook, but one of the things that comes up is let's talk about your financial goals.
And of course, that approach is okay, here's a goal. Now let's peel the onion. Well, what does that make possible for you now? Let's peel the onion and if you have that then what does that make possible for you? Let's [00:20:00] peel it back. And then if you can do that what makes possible for it so it's kind of a backwards approach whereas you're going in with what prompted this meeting and why now and somebody's already given you something probably a whole lot more powerful than some goal because the goal of saying, well, I want to be able to continue the standard income that I've got right now in retirement.
Okay, great. That's a goal. Now, why do you want that much money? Or why do you want that little money? Or what does that make possible for you? Right? So, the old way is to kind of peel that onion back and keep asking, oh, right. Your father died young and never had time to really spend time with his family and his grandchildren.
And okay, great. Right. So now we're learning something that there's this huge value to you in your time and being able to spend it without having to work or whatever you just said with your beautiful example of the 73-year-old guy lifting the boxes, right? So, it's like it's you're going in a different [00:21:00] direction that is absolutely going to help the advisor come up with some of the information he needs to start managing money in a way that is going to absolutely delight that client, take care of them, take care of their wants, their needs, their goals.
But you got to it in a more emotionally connected way, right off the bat. Yeah.
Brendan Frazier: And that's ultimately what you want to do to build trust, build connection.
Like just keep things simple. I always say that in any meeting with a prospect, where you're meeting with for the first time, this intro meeting, basically they have three things running through their mind and they're going, do I like you? Do I trust you and do I feel certain that you can provide the outcome or do I feel certain that you can solve the problem or deliver the outcome that I'm looking for and you have to answer those three questions before anybody will ever become a client.
If they don't like you and trust you, they're not going to become a client. If they have a problem that's on their mind and they don't feel certain that you can help them solve the problem that they came in to address, then they're [00:22:00] not going to become a client. And so you have to answer those three questions.
And back to what you said, I think there's a key point there. You're right. The idea is to take the conversation to another level, to go a little bit deeper and peel back and figure out why it's important for them to save. But the other thing that's happening there is you're not forcing your agenda on them, trying to figure out what their goals are.
At least not yet, right? It began instead of trying to talk about their goals and peel back their goals and figure out what's behind them, you're focusing first and foremost on the thing that's top of mind for them, which is the problem that they have, the reason why they reached out.
And Megan Lurtz says this a lot and it's not a new concept, but she and I talk about it a lot. Megan, who writes for the kids.com blog where we say we focus all the time on, Hey, most people in general, human beings aren't motivated. They're more motivated to cure pain than they are to achieve goals.
So, if you're trying to figure out how do I keep this person motivated? How do I get them to [00:23:00] move forward? I get them to talk about their goals. You at least not in this meeting, you have to at some point, but in this meeting, you're focused solely on their pain and it's the same reason why people have no problem taking painkillers.
But we don't take vitamins because we need to cure our pain. That's a motivating force. And you can leverage that not in a what an inhumane way, not in a sleazy way you leverage that in these meetings by focusing on their problems, leveraging their desire to cure the pain so that they can become a client.
And so I think I just wanted to clarify that oftentimes what we try to do, a big mistake I know that I've made plenty of times that a lot of advisors make is they're trying to say, Hey, let's talk about all the things that we can get you to when they're the prospects and they're going, Hey, I'm here for this one reason I just need to know, like, do I like you?
Do I trust you? Can you solve this problem that I have?
Lara Galloway: Well, in my business coaching life, which I did before I came to White Glove, that was one of the things I would coach a lot of my entrepreneurs on is how do you set up your business?
How do you sell whatever it is you sell? And the answer was always, you sell a painkiller, not a vitamin. People will dump their money on the counter to get rid of a migraine headache. It doesn't matter. I don't care what tools take all of the money. If you can get rid of this migraine, I will buy your product.
I don't need to vet it. Just take the money. If it's a vitamin, I don't know how to value that vitamin. I [00:25:00] don't know how much money is it worth to, you know, whatever. So I've always said, we, we need to sell painkillers, not vitamins. So, I love that Megan Lurtz says that. I wanted to drill in, though, on a piece that you just mentioned, though, the three things that you have to solve.
That third one was are you the expert for me? Are you the person who can solve this problem? So, in that intro meeting, you've acknowledged that it's important for advisors to establish their expertise, their credibility. How do they do that, Brendan, without coming across as really salesy and really boring and arrogant?
Brendan Frazier: Yeah, I mean, it's all important, but this is what everybody always wants to know. It's like, okay, I hear what you're saying, but how do I get them to see that I can help them. How do I articulate my values? Because I can do all these great things, right? And I agree with that.
And I've been there too, where you're like, okay, I can do all these great things. I've helped all these other people. I want this person to know how I can help them too. Like I mean, we can do cashflow management, get your cashflow in order, set up a [00:26:00] good investment portfolio and alignment with your goals.
By the way, we're going to talk about your goals and what's most important to you. And your life will get your estate planning. Your life insurance will help you walk through the difficult challenges in life. We're going to keep you invested through the downturn. In fact, when I was building the course out, I went and spent a little time researching the value that advisor provides to see what the longest list was that I could find where somebody had like put out a document on the internet of like the value and advisor provides.
And there was one list with like 50 plus things that an advisor does that adds value, both technical and non-technical, right? And so, I think it's important to start there and go when you know, you can help people because you've helped so many other people and you have all these ways that you can help.
It's really tempting to say Hey, I can help you in all of these ways. Look at all this value that I provided. I can still remember a phone call that I had with the guy that I wanted to work with a prospect. He hadn't come in for a meeting. I was just trying to like kind of get them sold on the idea.
And I remember sitting there feeling stressed. Like, okay, how [00:27:00] do I articulate the value of all this and then I remember hanging up after the call being like, I literally just rambled for five minutes trying to explain all the things we do and all the areas we could help. I even threw in an analogy about how it's like a GPS and I went on for five minutes and I'm at the end.
I remember apologizing to him being like Hey, I'm so sorry. I basically just talked your ear off and I expect him to be like, no, no, no. That was so helpful. It's really good. And I can totally see all the value that you provide. And he was like no, that's fine. I actually got to go. My family's coming over.
And I was like, okay, well, that was the example of how not to do it. And guess what? If I had been asking him questions about himself and curious and him and getting him talking, I bet he probably wouldn't have been in a rush to go meet with his family. All right. But what I say to that is it comes from a good place.
You know, you can help and you want to help. So how do you actually articulate it in a way that answers that third question where they go yes, you are the person that can solve my problem and deliver the [00:28:00] outcome that I have. So, I think I'm going to use this analogy I've used it if anybody's out there and turn it before just bear with me, but I think it's helpful and it's relevant.
But a few years ago, I guess it's a couple of years ago. Now we're at our house. We're inside. My wife looks out and our grass is really tall, right? It needs to be cut. We just moved in and so we didn't have a lawn mower. We moved from an HOA where they cut the grass for us. We didn't have a lawn mower.
I didn't have anybody to do it for us. She's sitting there looking out at the grass. I mean, it's higher than you want it to be. Our kids even made a joke about how we live in a jungle. It's kind of embarrassing. Anyways, so it's like, Hey, we need to get this grass cut. I know I need to get it done because my wife's on me about it.
And understandably so, not a knock on her. So we have this guy come over, I call him because I need somebody to mow the lawn. So, he comes over, we're outside the front door talking. And he's like, Hey good to meet you. I'm so and so. And I was like, awesome. Thanks for coming. As you can see, we need the lawn mode.
I got to get [00:29:00] this done. It's getting pretty out of control. And he's like, yeah, okay, we can do that. And I also, as I was walking up, I also figured like, Hey, we could add some more mulch in the garden I could do so I could trim some of these bushes for you. We need to cut the vine off the tree.
We can probably put a little rock wall in front of your flower garden to make it look a little better and list it off like three or four more things. And I'm sitting there going. Okay, I wasn't thinking this at the time, but in hindsight, this is what I started thinking back on. And yes, I do have a problem because in every area of my life, I'm always going how does this relate to financial planning with clients?
But that's another story. And so I'm sitting there like, Hey, I just have this one problem that I need solved and he's trying to paint this vision of what our yard could be and it came from a good place, right? He saw all the things that he could do but meanwhile I’m like hey man can you mow my lawn because my wife's going to get on to me if you can't mow the lawn I’m sure all those other things are great.
But let's solve this problem now and then we'll do the rest later. So what [00:30:00] he was doing was trying to display all of his value in this one conversation of all the great things that he could do. And I get it. He could probably make our lawn look really great. I had this one thing on my mind that I need cured in that moment.
And so the lesson from that is he was taking this shotgun approach where he was taking these shots and shotgun when you pull the trigger, the bullets spew in a bunch of different directions. And so he was taking like 6 or 7 different shots of things he could do instead of taking the sniper approach and saying, I hear you say you have this 1 problem.
Let's address that 1 problem 1st. And then we'll move forward from there. So that's what I call the sniper and shotgun approach. You want to take a sniper approach. And when you take the sniper approach, it becomes really, really easy to articulate your value. Because all you're doing is you're finding out, you're diving in on that one problem that they have that brought them there in the first place.
So back to my example, a second ago, the guy said he needed to start saving for retirement. He wanted to do it because he didn't want to be the 73-year-old that hates his life. [00:31:00] I could have from there gone okay. Yeah, that's great. We can get that set up for you. And then after that, we'll check your insurance.
We'll get your estate planning in order. What else do you think we need to do? Right. And I could have gone that path, but he said, Hey, I have this one problem that I need solved. And so all I did was ask him more about that problem. But if we stayed focused on the thing that was the top of mind for him saying, okay, what have you done?
What have you done thus far? How do you feel about what you've done thus far? Do you feel confident in the plan that you have now that it'll get you to that point? Well, no, that's why I'm here is because I don't feel confident in it. Okay. Well, what areas have you found that they're holding you back?
Well, I'm kind of paraphrasing and trying to remember this is two or three years ago now. But he said, like, what's held you back? What's not working? He's like, well, when I sit down and start looking at it, I get overwhelmed because there's all these different accounts that I could be putting the money into.
And I don't really know exactly what amount I should be putting into it. I don't want to put in too much because we still have to pay for our life today. So, I just get a little bit overwhelmed when I sit down, and I don't [00:32:00] end up not doing anything. So, then you start asking, okay, I totally understand that.
So, it sounds like you need a little help figuring out the right account. Optimizing the account and in the dollar amount because you want to start saving, but you don't want to sacrifice your life today for the future tomorrow. And he says, yeah, that's exactly right. So, as you're going through asking these follow up questions on the problem that brought them in.
Hey, you're building a level of trust and connection because you're letting them talk about the problems they have. And that always feels good. Right? I'll mention this now because it's something I always try to mention Moira Summers, the author of Advice That Sticks, has research that shows that the number one predictor of satisfaction in these meetings is the amount of airtime that the person gets, that the prospect gets.
A hundred percent. So, all you're doing is getting them to talk, getting them to open up, tell you about their problem, tell you where they've struggled with it, tell you where they need help. Alright, so now he said, I need to retire, or I want to start saving for retirement. I don't want to be the 73-year-old that hates his life.
And I really need help evaluating [00:33:00] the different account options that are available and settling on the right number to get it done. Settling on the right number to start funneling in there. Every single month, right? So, at that point, it becomes really easy to display and articulate your value because he's Ted.
He told me exactly what it was that he needs. So instead of taking this shotgun approach going, okay I could do cash management and investments and estate planning and life insurance and debt management. And by the way, a little retirement planning, it was, I didn't have to overwhelm him with the shotgun approach.
It became this. All right, great. Well, this is exactly what is right in our wheelhouse. We can help you get set up, it takes your money flowing in the right accounts every single month and with the right amounts that you're not sacrificing your life today for a future that's uncertain tomorrow.
And so in that it becomes a lot easier. I know I keep saying this, but I'm passionate about it. When you get the exact problem to be solved, it becomes really easy to tie your services directly to what that problem [00:34:00] is. That's really what it's all about, is you find out what the problem is, and then articulating your value becomes explaining it directly as the cure for the problem that they have, instead of trying to throw a bunch of darts at the wall.
Lara Galloway: Well, and by the way, I'm sure this is fairly obvious, but it just bears saying that, we talk a lot about building trust. Right. The whole financial relationship, financial industry, financial planning and advice industry has to be built on trust, and that's not going to be built all done in one workshop or in one intro meeting or in one follow-up meeting, it's going to be built over time.
And part of the way that you're building that trust is by honoring and listening to your client. Like you said, given them that airtime, they want to feel seen, heard, and understood. Right. And when you do that, you're building trust. And when you solve the one problem rather than trying to tell them every other thing that they need to worry about, that's fairly overwhelming, of course.
But when you solve that one problem [00:35:00] and you do that, well, the guy came and Mo Jelani did a great job, hands you his business card at the end and you're like, yeah, so you do these other services. Cool. I may call you back to handle these shrubs later. That's right because just the one problem you delivered on what I asked you to do and you know you made it look good now I'm willing to maybe consider going a little deeper with you because you also just deepen the relationship there with me in that trust level by delivering on what I asked you to do.
Brendan Frazier: That's right. And at the same time, not only am I going to use you because you've done a good job and you've built trust, but I'm also in a place where I'm able to actually think about all the other things that we could do. Like, it's really hard, the same thing goes for clients by the way, it's really hard when somebody comes in and says, Hey, I just had this massive tax bill last year, I need to figure out ways to minimize that.
Or somebody comes in and they say, like the example I keep using, the guy's like, Hey, I really need to get set up to save like for retirement. It's really hard to get somebody when they have this one myopic [00:36:00] focus is one linear focus to think beyond that until that thing is cured until it's done. But once it's done, then you're at a place where you can start thinking differently.
Once the lawns mode, and I know he's coming every couple of weeks to get that done. Now I'm at a place where I can start thinking about doing other things, right? It's the painkiller and vitamin again, right? Like the pain is the grass. My wife is not happy.
Lara Galloway: That's right. Yeah. That's exactly right on the tee.
That's a vitamin. I'm sure that's important. It's good for my health. I'll be happier later, but that's just not on my radar right now. Yeah. No, that's exactly right. That's a perfect example. Yeah, so, all right, we could go on and on and on, but I'm going to ask you to tell me a little bit before we go about how we can find out more about your guide and what we could look forward to receiving if we buy that guide, because I think everybody listening could benefit from learning exactly how you break it down in this ultimate intro meeting guide.
Brendan Frazier: Yeah. So, do we have a couple of minutes [00:37:00] to say about one more thing that I think is maybe the most important? I think it's all important, right? But there's something that I think is a powerful way to make these meetings go well every time. And it has to do with this idea of how you build trust and rapport right out of the gate.
And for our whole lives in this industry, you always hear okay, try to create some rapport. And so, I know I've been there, but you kind of go all right, do I do that with small talk? Do we talk about the weather? Do we talk about our sports teams or like what we're doing this weekend, the trips that we're taking?
And my thought around that is essentially it's not small talks, not bad. It's just not as helpful and productive as other things can be. Doing harm. It's not causing damage, but there are other things you could be doing intentionally instead of small talk that start priming some trust that start moving the trust style to get the person opened up to start creating conversational flow.
So, the easiest way I can explain to do that is right out of the gate, right at [00:38:00] the very beginning of these meetings. If you're trying whenever you normally do small talk, you're going to be really tempted to ask. How are you? How's it going? How was the weekend? Those are okay questions, but you're not going to get great answers.
We have to read. We have to basically reprogram in our minds what we expect from those questions. How are you? Good. How was your weekend? That was good. We had a good time, right? That's not what you're going for. That doesn't get somebody excited to start talking. So how do you get somebody to open up and start talking right out of the gate?
It takes a little prayer, take some practice. It also takes some planning, but you want to ask what I call a three E question. Three, because it has to be easy to answer, exciting to answer, and have an emotional component to it. Easy, exciting, and emotional. Because if you can get somebody to ask questions that are easy, exciting, and emotional, it gets somebody opening up, it starts priming their conversational pump, and it creates conversational flow to where your problem isn't, how do I get this person to open up?
The problem is, how do I [00:39:00] get them to shut up so that we can move into the actual conversation now, I know that sounds bad. I don't like saying that. In fact, I hope that there's a better way to say, and I'll come up with it eventually. But that the problem isn't how do I get them to open up?
It's how do I transition to what we need to talk about? Because we don't have all day. So what is an example of a three question? An easy, exciting, emotional question here. A few that are basic, but powerful. So one would be, I'm in Nashville, right? So how did you end up in Nashville? How long have you been here?
How did you end up here? Easy because I've answered it before exciting because I get to talk about myself and emotional because I get to go back and relive my past. Another one would be if you work with a business owner, for example, so I know maybe it's a long-time client. Maybe it's in this example, it's a prospect.
So, you're like, hey, I see where you've got this business it looks like it's doing well. Maybe you're familiar with the business, but then just say, but I'm kind of curious. Obviously, you're doing well now. Where did the idea to start this business even come from, where did you come up with this idea? And by the [00:40:00] way, anybody that loves people, loves talking about their businesses.
They love talking about their kids, they love talking about their past. So, if you get somebody to talk about those things, that's easy, exciting, and emotional. And then the last one, if you're meeting with a couple, this one's simple. I know probably a lot of people out there have done this to some degree.
But just being intentional about starting this way and saying, Hey, thanks for coming in. I always like asking this. This is my favorite question to ask. How did you guys meet? Right. And then you're getting them to tell us something that they're they'll open up and talk. Oftentimes you'll get the person to talk.
That's not the numbers person. So, you'll get them to open it up and engage right away. And it gets the conversation flowing. And then once the conversation is flowing, you're going to get better responses when you're asking what prompted this. Why now and getting more details. They're now ready to talk more.
And again, the problem becomes, how do I keep this condensed to the meeting, like to the timeframe that we've committed to, you'd rather have that problem than the problem of going, why is this person not telling me anything? What am I doing wrong? Why can't I get [00:41:00] them to open up?
Anyways, I just wanted to share that because how you start the meeting dictates the trajectory of the meeting, if you start that way, you're going to have better meetings.
Lara Galloway: Man, I'm so glad you included that, but you are going to have to talk fast now. Okay, so tell us how we can find out more about your guide.
Brendan Frazier: Yeah, well, it's more important for me to help people have better readings than it is to have them find me. But you can go to the website, wiredplanning.com. It'll be linked to some of the posts in there. I sent it out via email. Every now and then you can also reach out to me directly on both Twitter and LinkedIn or via email.
That's totally fine. Or listen to the podcast. You'll hear me mention it on there from time to time as well.
Lara Galloway: Well, I love all the stuff that you're posting on LinkedIn, I think covers so much of what you've shared, a little bit of today. Like we've just kind of scratched the surface.
But you provide so many helpful questions and such a great framework for just getting in the right mindset. Like, what am I [00:42:00] trying to accomplish? How do I do that well? How do I get the best results for these people in the easiest and most effective way? And I think you make it really simple.
So we will make sure that we put your email, your website, all of your stuff in our show notes so people can find you and learn more. But I just think you do such a phenomenal job of breaking down something that I think, like you said, sets the trajectory for the whole relationship. And if it's done well, it can be just so, so productive.
And that's something that I feel like all our clients at White Glove could really benefit from. But just anybody out there listening, you can benefit from having better meetings and I'm sure that you're going to check Brendan out for that. So, before we go, Brendan, I always like to close with just checking in and hearing what your guest definition of success is.
So, I will let you answer that any way you want to in any realm of your life or work. But I just love to hear how you define success.
Brendan Frazier: Yeah, this is one of those questions that I like hearing other people's answers to and then I start formulating my own and I get a little bit of anxiety or I guess [00:43:00] stress out about it a little bit.
But yeah, I spent a little time thinking about it and I think for me at this phase of my life, success is making a difference in an impact for advisors and clients around the world. Like that's a big thing for me, right? It's on my vision map. It's on my whiteboard over there is building a community that makes a difference around the world.
But at the same time, maybe more importantly is, do I have the time and money flexibility to do the things that I want with my family, with my wife and with my kids? Do we have a thriving, passionate marriage. My wife's a marriage counselor, so we have no choice, but to be in a good marriage.
Right? But we want to anyways, but so is our marriage great and am I an active present dad? And do I have the ability to do those things without anything taken away from it? And that's kind of at this point in my life, those are like the three filters that I evaluate my life through my wife or marriage, kids and business.
That sounds kind of boring. It is boring, but it's just try to keep it simple.
Lara Galloway: Sounds like you're on track, man. [00:44:00] Great job. Thanks for leading and thanks for kind of helping demonstrate that. So other people can pick their path and find a way to do it effectively too. So, Brendan, it has been a pleasure.
Thank you so much for joining us today on the FAST Podcast.
Brendan Frazier: Thank you so much for having me. I appreciate it.
Aric Johnson: Brendan, I needed you 10 years ago. I'll just be honest. I would work with clients, talk to folks, talk to prospects. And it was like they were drinking from a fire hose because I was telling them all the different things, you know, the problems I could solve.
I needed to shut up and I didn't. So, it took me a little while to get that crap down. Took probably two years into my company before I realized I'm not landing as many clients because I'm not listening as much as I should. So. thank you for all you do, Lara, here's the thing again, you bring on so many great guests.
There are advisors out there that are not connected with White Glove listening to this and they need to connect with you. So please give them your information as well.
Lara Galloway: Just join us over on the website, whiteglove.com. Or you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aric Johnson: Perfect. Thank you both again. And of course, our last thank you will [00:45:00] always go to the listening audience.
Thank you so much for tuning in and listening to the FAST Podcast with Lara Galloway. If you have not subscribed to the podcast yet, please click the subscribe now button below. This way, when Lara comes out with a new podcast, it'll show up directly on your listening device. And we humbly ask that you share this podcast, rate it, and leave a review, as this actually does help others find the show.
Again, thank you so much for listening today. For everyone at White Glove, this is Aric Johnson reminding you to live your best day, every day and we'll see you next time.
Voiceover: Thank you for listening to the FAST Podcast, Financial Advisor Strategy Talks with Lara Galloway your go to source designed to help you grow your business. Have questions about the topics covered during the show visit our website at www.whiteglove.com or email us at info@WhiteGlove.com.
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