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Proven Strategies Blog

2020-12-03 • 5 min video

Get clarity on your gaps so that you can focus on what's really proprietary in your business. Enhance your professional contrast and ensure you are positioned for scalable growth.

To take a deeper dive into the concepts Duncan discusses, check out the Blue Square Method, designed for busy professionals and their teams, who want to take their client relationships to the next level:

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2020-12-02 • 20 second read

Why is it important to you to hear someone reveal the goals that give their life purpose? It takes the accomplishment of the goal beyond anything trivial and drives home purpose. Professionalize this so it's not just good intentions. Understand what somebody aspires to with respect to their family, their occupation and the recreational interests, because money is a means to those ends, but the value you bring around their money ensures that those goals are attained.

Work with my team to learn how to help your clients realize their goals:

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2020-12-01 • 2 minute read

Build Your Plan Sequentially Instead of at the Last Minute

I've heard variations of this old saying that really hits home as it relates to the passage of time: 

The days can seem long, but the years often seem short.  

In my view this seems especially true when it comes to running a business and parenting. There are daily stresses that, at times, can make the days drag on a bit but then the next thing you know, another year has gone by. It's hard to believe that 2021 is just around the corner. And if the last year (or even the last five years) seems to be a bit of blur, it's likely that 2021 will whiz by even faster.

I'm bringing this up because right now is the ideal time to start bringing your vision for the future out of your head and galvanizing it on paper. If you patiently but deliberately create a plan for 2021 over the month, rather than the last Sunday evening in December, you'll create a plan that better serves as a guidance system, is more actionable and predictable, and consists of goals that are balanced, clear and attainable.

Now before I continue, I want to qualify something about the importance of advice. My weekly articles can sometimes come off as a little preachy and oversimplified. But if anyone knows the power of advice and the importance of planning, it's a financial advisor. Think about it, what would you tell someone who told you they don't see the value of financial advice? They say to you, "I'm doing it myself because a financial advisor is too expensive and the results can be underwhelming or uncertain." You'd probably tell them - or at least think to yourself - "That is crazy." 

With that in mind, what is your feeling about business advice? Do you continually seek it out to help you break old patterns and self-imposed limits? Are you a serious student when it comes to personal and professional development? Do you focus on what it costs, or on what it's worth? 

"Even turkeys can fly in a strong wind."

As you know, there are some advisors whose business growth is tied primarily to the natural lift of the markets. They're not doing anything special or even deliberate when it comes to business development. These are the same advisors who operate in isolation and end up in a vacuum and eventually plateau. There are other advisors in this business who channel their existing momentum, make continual refinements to proven strategies, address the issues that are undermining their achievement, and document a plan to ensure they continually focus on the things they can control. 

I don't want to oversimplify things too much but that is one of the most important aspects of a plan. The process allows you to tune out the noise and distractions and focus on proven strategies that generate results. A good plan serves as a reminder of what matters as the year unfolds to also ensure that you don't drift off track.

Continued Success!

Contributed by: Duncan MacPherson

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2020-11-30 • 20 second read

Expectation management for yourself and your clients is vital. The stronger your relationships are, and the better your communication strategy and execution is, the more likely that your clients will say to you, “Whatever you think is best. I will follow you anywhere.”

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2020-11-27 • 20 second read

When a client leaves, call them. Say you respect their decision and then ask, “In the spirit of elevating the client experience and striving to learn from this, I'd like to ask you: Why did you leave?” Whatever the answer, I want you to think in terms of what refinement and optimization looks like. Make your clients the voice you listen to. Refinement is triggered by critical moments. Some are positive, some are negative. Let all of them serve you as you move to take your business to the next level.

Pareto Systems' Total Client Engagement Process will help you retain and attract top clients. Click here to learn more about the process:

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2020-11-26 • 20 second read

At Pareto Systems we have established the BPS Network which is a community of like-minded advisors who have adopted best practices and have a mindset of stewardship over salesmanship. The Azimont Group out of Plano, TX is one of these high performing teams and they are growing! To learn more about the Azimont Group and the BPS Network visit:

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2020-11-25 • 20 second read

Make sure prospective clients know you're a specialist, not a generalist. Whatever your target market is, do case studies, success stories, warnings and examples around that target market to help activate contrast - so that prospective clients understand you are superior to their current provider and give them a reason to reach out and talk to you.

2020-11-24 • 9 minute video

The path to self-actualization, and the best version of ourselves, requires adversity for what it makes of us.

In this episode of the Blue Square Video Series, Duncan suggests you have to start evolving your messaging because, as each day of this volatility goes by, you can't just say exactly the same thing.

Visit the Pareto Systems Knowledge Base for videos, scripts and templates to help you evolve your messaging:

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2020-11-24 • 2 minute read

Many business professionals set aside some time in late December or early January to set some goals for the New Year. We encourage financial advisors to use a simple process and write out some goals for the year.

The following is a quick and easy variation of our goal setting process that you can use to get your visionary wheels turning. It's called W5 and if you know a thing or two about journalism you know the power of a diagnostic approach to reveal what's really important. Ponder these questions and put pen to paper so that you have a clear picture for what you would like to see happen in your business and your life in 2021.

  1. What am I grateful for? When setting goals, it's natural to place an emphasis on aspiring for things we don't yet have. In the process we can overlook what we have already achieved and take many important things for granted. Gratitude is a powerful force and can help slow life down so that we aren't completely driven by ambition. Contentment and appreciation in conjunction with aspiration can lead to balance and personal fulfillment.
  2. Where do I see myself at the end of 2021? This is where you take your goals out of your head and put a wish list on paper. Take a panoramic view in this process. Most people feel a wellspring of self-motivation when they go through this process and get very excited about the promise of the future.
  3. Who do I want to become? Back to the topic of balance, this question reminds us not to just focus on monetary or tangible goals. That's not to say they aren't important pieces of the puzzle, they are. As legendary business philosopher Jim Rohn often said, "Who we become is more important than when we earn or acquire." This question ignites other important issues related to our sense of purpose and personal legacy as well.
  4. Why is this so important to me? Speaking of self-motivation and a sense of purpose, this questions helps us cut through the clutter and tune out some of the noise and other distractions that compete for our attention. All of those external issues can conspire against us by causing us to lose focus and drift off course. By finding the answer to this question, we can create a beacon that helps us stay on track.
  5. When will I get started? Ultimately if we are to achieve a goal we have to take action before the Law of Diminishing Intent kicks in. There has to be a sense of urgency. Often the key that separates the best from the rest in life is understanding this simple maxim - After all is said and done, more is often said than done.
  6. How will I achieve my goal? Some goals are more complex than others and because of the Law of Cause and Effect; they require a specific action plan to translate them into reality. Coupled with the fact that most success in life is achieved incrementally, many lofty goals require that new habits be formed and a patient reliance on compounding effort be applied. Solid, consistent activity will often lead to heightened productivity if you have a plan and see it through. 

On behalf of everyone at Pareto Systems, I wish you all the very best for 2021. I sincerely hope it is a breakthrough year for you personally and professionally.

Continued Success!

Contributed by: Duncan MacPherson

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2020-11-23 • 20 second read

Who views it as an accomplishment when you bring on a new client? Is it you for closing them, or them for qualifying because there's a good fit? Which is the track to advocacy?

Attend Mastermind in Palm Springs, CA to discuss strategies with other like-minded advisors looking to turn their top clients into referral-generating advocates. Springs 2019 dates have been added! Click here to learn more:

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