After going to a dentist in pain and being told by the receptionist, someone will get back to you within a week, I decided to make a change.
Not because of the dentistry, but because of how the support team made me feel.
Sunday morning, I texted my new dentist and told him I was still in pain. He called me back within 10 minutes and called in a prescription for me.
On Monday morning at 7:30 am, he scheduled my appointment. After spending Sunday evening at the hospital in extreme pain, that no prescriptions seemed to help, I was met by my dentist Monday morning to solve a very painful problem.
I hired my dentist to look after my dental and health care and solve any dental problems. He took one look at me and immediately set me up with the best specialist he knew to solve my problem.
Was I asking my dentist, who I was going to see or how much it will cost? No, I trusted another professional to refer me to an office that was in my best interest and would take care of me like my dentist does. That same morning, I was at the endodontists office and after several long hours, and a double root canal, the problem was solved and I had a huge relief.
The experience taught me the value of being a quarterback, a point person to co-ordinate my dental issues. Let’s dig deeper to see how this all happened.
Coordinated, organized, informed
First off my dentist had a solid relationship with offices who he could refer to. He did not just have one office to refer to who may be closed or busy, but several choices.
He made some calls on my behalf and organized it while I sat waiting in his office. He then forwarded information to that office so I did not have to repeat my story and rediagnose my problem. They got the whole story that morning.
The two professionals had a discussion to clarify my situation. The endodontist office greeted me as if they were prepared for me and knew me. These are all people skills, not dentistry that made me feel like a million dollars.
If you are like me and are intimidated by a dentist’s office, imagine how I felt at the endodontist office. In the end I had two root canals completed and walked out pain free. I had a sore jaw when the freezing came out, but it was nothing compared to the pain I was in. So how does this relate to the financial industry?
Build your professional network
Working with advisors, I often ask how they coordinate tax planning with clients, estate planning, risk management and insurance planning with other professionals. The answer is either they do not coordinate because of a poor excuse like accountants or lawyers never refer or return their calls. Or I get “I don’t know of many professionals to work with and refer to. It is quite simple.
I refer to it as building the “magic six” for EVERY IDEAL CLIENT! The “magic six” is knowing who the following professionals are, in your ideal client’s lives. They may include their accountant, lawyer or estate planning professional (Trust Company) realtor, mortgage specialist, insurance agency and banker.
Set up these fields in your CRM contact management system and start coordinating your client’s lives. Ask your ideal clients this question “We are updating your professional contacts to make sure we coordinate your planning with them, tell me who is your accountant? What is one thing that your accountant does that you really appreciate?”
Now, armed with this information, call the accountant and get to know them. The call would sound something like this” Hello Brent (The accountant) I work with a mutual client (name) and they said they like (what your client said they appreciate) what you do for them and I am looking for professionals like you to work with, can we have a coffee to discuss how you may be able to help our clients more?
Critical steps in building your network
First, make sure you have authorization or release of information forms and procedures to fulfil your professional obligations as well as your networks.
Each industry has their rules and understanding them is critical. Build a form for you or your team to complete to gather the information and put into your CRM contact management system.
Communicate to your network of professionals as if they are one of your ideal clients. Then they will understand what it means to be an ideal client of yours.
Share a case study or two to help them understand the value and scope of your work. Start by writing out a case study to share, one that you are really proud of.
Plan a communication schedule to keep the communication two way, so when it comes time to help a client, it is clear who in your network will work best with each ideal client. Educate your clients on the power of your network of subject matter experts in several areas, to help them advance planning in more than one area. How many times have your clients told you” I didn’t know you did that?”
You may not do tax planning, but you can certainly coordinate it. My dentist does not do endodontists, but I did not start at an endodontist.
Start by asking your ideal clients who the “magic six” are in their lives. Become a better coordinator of advice today and help your clients relieve the pain in finding and coordinating all these key people in their life.
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