7 ways to become a leveraged financial planner:
Tactics like maintaining ’to-do‘ lists, setting goals, and decreasing the amount and time spent in client meetings can all help you become a leveraged financial planner, but really, these are all tactics that fall into a strategical category of leveraging our time.
Leverage is an awesome force – it allows us to multiply our abilities by applying a little pressure to something.
In life, one of the most important things we can leverage is our time, and here are 7 ways to become a leveraged financial planner:
1. Get it out of your head.
If it’s in your head, chances are it’s taking up valuable storage space that you can be using to get things done.
Every time you think of a task, to-do item, or idea, write it down. Getting it out of your head not only lets you focus energy elsewhere, rather than trying to remember things, it also helps you clear your mind so you’ll be more effective when you do try to tackle that massive list of tasks.
2. Organize your day
Do you go to work and just ‘jump in‘ to all the work that’s in front of you?
Try this instead: organize your day into chunks of time–10-15 minutes for emails, an hour for that large project due at the end of the month, etc. Focus on knocking out the most important things on the list, earlier in the day to increase your productivity.
3. Use other people’s time
This is the big one in my opinion, leveraging other people.
This doesn’t mean using other people – no one likes that. Leveraging other people means empowering and allowing employees and even outsourced help, to help you with some of your routine tasks throughout the day.
There are many paraplanners and administrators willing to do tasks for substantially less than how you value your own time.
Most financial planners outsource their compliance and accounting, yet they will waste hours trying to do marketing tasks or write a report. You will not be a totally leveraged financial planner until your STOP doing these tasks.
4. Focus on the prize.
Focus on how awesome it will be when that great prospect will become a profitable client, not the tasks in hand to get to that stage.
The issuing of letters of authority, the loading of details onto a back office system, the gathering of the information and even the written financial plan can all be done by people as good if not better than you at those tasks.
Set up a system and check in on the progress sure, but to be truly leveraged you need to be looking for that next great prospect.
Also, remember, give yourself a large reward when you finish the project! You did the hard bit, you found the prospect and convinced him to become a client.
5. Allow time for yourself.
One of the most overlooked aspects of the working life of a financial planner is being spread too thin. Always find time for you and your life. Otherwise why are you really leveraging your financial planning business?
Plan and build time into each day to just unwind and do nothing. Don’t think, don’t check emails, don’t call your friend. Just sit, relax, and let your mind recharge.
You’ll return refreshed and more able to leverage the time you have. In addition, take a breather for one day a week, or every other week, where possible to increase your productivity.
Do some easier tasks or the “fun” parts of your work, but don’t let yourself get carried away turning Sunday afternoon into another workday.
6. Use technology.
Technology is essential in running a business and allows us to become connected than ever. It can suck us in with promises of simple task management, planning, and keeping us in the loop. But we can easily get caught in the vortex of more, more, more tech.
There are an endless supply of new and really cool apps and software packages that could help increase your productivity. However, the last thing you want to end up doing is spending all your free time checking each one out! So be careful and mindful of how you are leveraging technology!
7. Keep learning.
The day you stop learning is the day you stop producing good stuff.
Keep reading, trying new things, and implementing them.
A big one for me has been to start listening to audiobooks in the car to and from work, and during workouts. I can set most of these away at 1.5 times speed too.
Leverage is only useful to us if we are using it in the right direction: if we let the pressures of our lives get to us so much that we feel like we’re drowning, leverage is to blame as it’s leverage in the wrong direction. So try 7 ways to become a leveraged financial planner.