“What is the secret to attracting ideal clients while removing the less than ideal ones?”
This question is critical and the answer is a game changer for your business & life….
When we take the time to identify and work with clients who take responsibility for the decisions they make (as well as see the value we bring to them and respect our time), we dramatically increase our odds of creating a successful business and life we love.
When I was starting out, a mentor shared that one of the most important things I needed to do before accepting a new client was to confirm that their expectations were realistic. If they had unrealistic expectations, she recommended that I refer them to someone else.
Because attracting ideal clients with realistic expectations is essential to creating a successful small business or consulting firm, this is a critical first step.
Over the years I have found that people show up along a continuum of three levels. These levels are generally not an absolute. While a Level 3 may show up under certain circumstances as a Level 1, the key is to identify how they show up the majority of the time. It is also important to determine how they show up under stress or when something isn’t going their way. Now I don’t recommend that you intentionally create a stressful situation but I do recommend that you pay close attention to how they react when something doesn’t go their way.
Level 1 people have a low worth barometer, lack self-esteem & have beliefs that do not support their goals. They also lack responsibility and ownership. They show up as a victim or bully. They live by a lose-win (victim) or a win-lose (bully) mentality. They spend the majority of their time living in negative, low energy environments which include blame, worry, anger and fear. Because their life isn’t working (at some level), they want others lives to not work.
When you provide input to a level 1 that they don’t wish to hear, they will find a way to prove you are wrong (which is how they react to most of the advice anyone provides them). The primary reason they do this is because they live in fear. Fear that they are wrong, fear that they are not enough, fear of what it would take to change their reality.
To learn more about these levels, go to: “7 Principles“
They are defensive, complain, blame and gossip and look for what is wrong. Why? Experts believe some of the reasons include their need to win, feel better about themselves, gain control or even get attention.
When they are faced with a challenge or problem, their focus is on the problem not the solution to the problem, leaving you wondering if they want a solution.
While some level 1’s are masters at appearing that everything is wonderful in their life, the reality is a very different story.
Some experts believe that, at some level, their problems are working so well that they don’t want to change.
Regardless of why they show up this way, the best thing you can do is accept that you will not be able to change them. If they do become your client, you will likely spend the rest of your relationship regretting it!
Level 2’s lack resources including time and/or money. This is the most overlooked level. It is also the biggest potential for future business. The key to this level is to consistently follow up with them so when the time is right, you will be on the top of their radar. The Level 2’s that ultimately show up as Level 1’s are best replaced with prospects that are on track to joining the Level 3 club.
Level 3’s are your ideal clients. They focus on the positive, take responsibility and are accountable and enjoyable to work with. When faced with a problem or challenge, they are open to ideas. One of the key traits of a Level 3 is that they focus on the solution to the problem versus the problem.
One of the most common questions I receive is, “What is the easiest way to increase my Level 3 clients?” The answer is simple, “Become one and create a financial advisor marketing plan that attracts them!”
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