The Advantages of a Career in Financial Services

Advantage #1 – Nearly everyone is a potential client. Unless you plan to specialize, such as working only with the affluent who have $10 million or more in net worth or some other niche, your pool of potential clients expands to nearly every adult on the planet. Think about it. Who doesn’t need knowledge and sound advice on keeping and growing their money? It doesn’t matter if their discretionary funds are only $50 or as much as $50,000 a month, everyone has a need for what you offer. Millions of people are seeking to earn, save, invest, and increase their fortunes. They need life insurance, debt consolidation services, long term care, annuities, 401K plans, full blown investment programs and other financial services. Most will have a continuing need for those services and so will their families as the children grow and are told “just call Bob/Sally. They’ve taken good care of us for a long time. They’ll treat you right.” Your legacy will grow with continual referrals from satisfied clients.

Advantage #2 – You, and only you determine your income level.  You get to choose how hard you work, how long you work and how many clients you want to work with. You also choose how well you’ll develop your skills.

Some of the best advice I ever got about selling as a career is this: Selling is the highest paid hard work and the lowest paid easiest work there is. That’s it in a nutshell. If you’re willing to work hard, the reward is huge. My job in this book is to help you learn how to increase your income and your sense of accomplishment by working smarter as well.

Sure, you can double your income by working twice the hours and with twice as many clients. The real fun begins when you develop your skills to a point where you’re working half the time and still making the same income. Or, if you choose, you’re working the same amount of time for double the income! No one limits your income potential in this field but you.

It doesn’t matter how well or not-so-well you’ve done so far in your financial services career. You are to be commended for investing in your financial future by owning this book, by investing your time to read it, and by applying its tactics and strategies to create a better life by better serving your clients. You are already demonstrating your desire to go beyond average to achieve “champion” status.

Advantage #3 – You’ll experience real joy and satisfaction in helping others throughout your career. Who doesn’t want that as a reward for their daily toil? If you’re in this business for the right reasons–to serve the needs of others–it’ll warm your heart every day that you help a family or an individual take one more step toward doing the right thing with their money because you educate them. You help them make wise decisions to protect their families and their assets, to start investing for growth and planning for the future. You’re making a powerful, positive difference in people’s lives.  What a bonus!

I’m constantly amazed at the shockingly high percentage of our population that hasn’t the foggiest idea of capital, how it works, and how it can be used to better one’s life. This is where you come in. You are an integral component of our free enterprise system. Your knowledge, wisdom and experience with financial matters puts you in a position to help fuel the dreams and ambitions of individuals, families, companies and organizations – it’s how you make things happen.

Advantage #4 – You are in charge of your time. Of course, most financial planners work specific hours but you have the freedom to choose those hours and the flexibility to include important non-work activities in your schedule. There are few things worse than achieving business/financial success while losing touch with the loved ones who make the rewards worthwhile.

Most folks in the financial services industry are entrepreneurs, independent contractors who work on their own, but not alone. They align themselves with large companies or groups whose products they offer. Those companies have your back. They provide education, service and support for what you do, but they don’t dictate your hours. You inhabit the very best of both worlds.

Advantage #5 – You can live and work practically anywhere in the world. It’s wise to build your business and your reputation in the community in which you live. However, if you choose to specialize in another market, even another part of the country, once the accounts are established, much of your continuing service can be done via phone, email, and online.

Advantage #6 – Providing financial services is mentally stimulating. It’s important to remember that the industry is large and diverse. With so many choices to explore, you are bound to find aspects of the industry that are a good match for your skills and interests. Rather than being a Jack or Jill of all financial trades, you may decide to specialize in working with particular lines of products. And, with the needs of your clients and industry offerings constantly changing, you’ll find yourself enjoying learning about new products that may be beneficial to your existing clients or help you earn the business of new ones.

In some ways, your job is to gather just the right materials and equipment (products and services) to build the dreams of your clients. You are a financial structural engineer!

Advantage #7 – There’s long term potential. The need for financial services professionals is huge. It’s on the Bureau of Labor Statistics list of “in-demand” occupations. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates for the ten year period, 2006-2016, 2,223,000 positions will be necessary in financial services. See…what you do is necessary for the long haul. If you’re willing to do your part, you can build a lifetime career in this field. A large number of industries are dwindling, downsizing or dying every year, but financial services is not one that’s even on the edge of extinction.

If you’ll look up other statistics, you’ll likely find that average financial services counselors and representatives earn good incomes. That’s wonderful news but my goal in this book is to show you how to rise above average—how to earn whatever income you put your mind to.

I don’t know of anyone who has ever taken my training with the goal to become average. There was a time when mediocrity was acceptable. It was the standard—the norm. Achievers were seen as being pushy and aggressive. Or, worse. Many were considered oddballs. Not so today. Go-getters are admired and their progress watched. Clients want to work with someone who’s on the cutting edge of the industry. They want to be the first to know about new products that might benefit them and they’ll go out of their way to work with an advisor who has his or her fingers on the pulse of the financial world.

Excerpted from How to Master the Art of Selling Financial Services. Learn More>>

My upcoming Sales Academy and my online courses have been approved by the CFP Board and the Financial Planning Standards Council (FPSC) for continuing education credits.

This information is copyrighted by Tom Hopkins International, Inc. for reprint permission, contact Judy Slack (judys@tomhopkins.com).

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