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The Truth About Getting to the Next Level | The Magellan Network Show with Coach Joe Lukacs
Recently, I did a private webinar for a group of advisors. In the Q and A section, I was asked, what's the key element to being successful long term as an advisor. We're not talking about having a good month or quarter or year. It's really a career-long success. To learn more about how you can level up your career, watch my latest episode!

The Magellan Academy & Network

The rules and tools for success in the financial services industry are about to change radically.

I have spent over 25 years coaching only financial advisors. In that time, I have personally conducted over 50,000 individual coaching sessions. I have built a profound knowledge base of what it takes to achieve lifelong success in business and life. In my career, I have transformed 1,000’s of advisors (below are video and written testimonials by many of them).

Many of you probably paid thousands of dollars to various coaching programs with very mixed results. Most coaching programs are just that. A pre-planned process that is “cookie cutter”. Where they have salespeople having to “sell” you on their program and results. In most cases, it’s about the coach, their ego, and their money. They base their program on “practice management” or “marketing”. They make you more intelligent. What they all fail to do is help you make that “mindset” shift that must happen for you to realize your dreams and vision.

I am going to coach you, teach you, inspire you, and train you all on your mobile device every business day.

You are going to get better at business development, practice management, personal development, and your vision.

Here is what you are going to get from me each month:

 A 5-10 minute morning coach video each business day.

 3 training videos of 20-30 minutes each. This will be a deep dive into four areas I mentioned above.

 A live group coaching session where you and I can interact and work together.

Here is what you can do each month:

 Post a question to me and I will answer it.

 Collaborate and associate with like-minded advisors.

 Invite other great advisors into the network.

Your Bottom Line:
Here is the deal. I am not going to ask you for a credit card. Like I said before, coaching is personality driven. You might not like my style or tactics. So with that in mind here is my offer to you. Complete the short form below. You will receive an email with detailed instructions on how to join the network for the next 30-days. I personally approve each submission so this might take a few hours or a day at the most. I will not ask for compensation of any kind during that 30-days.

If after experiencing my work for 30-days and if you believe that I can help you, here is the deal. To remain in Magellan Network and have access to Magellan Academy, your daily investment in yourself will only be about the price of a Latte these days. One more thing, it’s a month-to-month deal. I’m not going to lock you into anything.

Take action now and complete the short form below and I look forward to welcoming you personally inside the Magellan Network.


► Subscribe to our channel here:





Watch: The PracticePower Podcast

PracticePower Academy Podcast #1126 Why Advisors Fail?
Last week I had the privilege of leading a private 2-day business planning event for a group of advisors in Scottsdale AZ. None of them have ever been through my business planning process. What’s unique about that event is participates can get private time with me to discuss their goals and plan for the new year.

Several had a great year in 2015 but failed to achieve their 2016 goals and most went backward. This brings me to my topic for today. What causes an advisors to go backward (fail)? Sometimes there are legitimate forces (health issues, personal issues, etc), they are in the minority. There are 2 main reasons what advisors stop growing or go backwards. First, they relax their standards. Second they assume their past success will equal future success.

In this podcast lets discuss:

* Why standards are so important to success.
* How to maintain or increase your standards.
* Why assuming success can cost you millions.
* What you see in the mirror every morning matters.

If you have a topic that you would like me to cover in future episodes, or have a questions please email me a

Coach Joe’s Blog

How to Handle Adversity

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Hi! Coach Joe here and welcome to this episode of The Magellan Network Show. In this episode, what I want to talk about is everybody’s favorite subject. Adversity. Right? 

Obviously, it’s not. But if you live at all and you’re in business in any shape or form, let’s face it adversity is going to show up on your doorstep. It’s not a question of “If” but it’s a question of “When” and “How many times”.  

I want to share with you some strategies that I’ve developed, in my 25+ years of coaching advisors on how to deal with adversity.  

Let’s talk about adversity first and define it. All adversity is not created equal. In my experience, there are two types of adversity. One is internal adversity, which I’ll explain in a moment, and then the second one is external adversity. 

What are the differences? Internal adversity, for the lack of a better word, is self-imposed. It’s something you created on your own. For example, it maybe that you stopped your morning ritual or your daily game plan.  

Or you’re just on survival mode. You’re not going to the gym, your energy level sucks, or your health is not in good shape. Things like that are internally focused.  

External adversityin essence, are things that happen outside of our control. The best example that I can use here is the fall of 2008 and the spring of 2009, we had a lifetime’s worth of external adversities in about six months.  

Things like economic scenarios, market scenarios, geopolitical scenarios or the weather right here in Florida. We have hurricanes, right? That’s external adversity. In California, you have wildfires and droughts. This past winter in Michigan you had ice storms. Again, external adversity. 

There are things that happen that we don’t control. The bottom line is, you need to have strategies in advance. You need to have a game plan to handle these pieces of adversity when they show up.  

Some of you may be saying or thinking, “Wait a second. Isn’t this being negative?” No. It is about preparation. For example, here in Florida. I have a game plan if a Category 5 hurricane comes over Melbourne, FL. and totally destroys my house. I’m going to be in Atlanta, GA within 24-48 hours.  

I’ll be getting a VRBO and I have everything in the cloud if everything is thrashed. Then, I’ll go to BestBuy and get a new computer. I’ll be up and running in 48 hours. I’ll be in Buckhead in Atlanta. Why? Because I’ve done the research and I’m set to go.  

Let me ask you another question. If your office building burned down tonight, do you have a plan that says, “If I cannot access my office, here is how I’m going to move forward”. If you do not have that, you need to create one.  

Again, this is not negative thinking. This is preparation. If adversity shows, what must we do? One thing that we don’t want to do is just pretend that it doesn’t exist and have this psychology that I’m just going to “out effort” it.  

I’m just going to sit there and plow through it. I’m a tough dude or I’m going to make it happen.  

That is to me, the same scenario as, I went for a hike in the forest, I’m lost. I’m going to run now, and run with my head down not caring what direction I’m in.  

If you run with your head down in the forest, you’re going to either run into or run off of something. Nothing good comes of it. Same thing with adversity.  

You cannot just put your head down and work. You’ve got to take a pause and look around and survey options. This is why pre-planning is so important.  

For you on teams. What if a key team member has to take a leave of absence? Maybe they have a phase going on in their life. What’s our plan for that? How do we handle that?  

These are just some scenarios you may want to take a look at. Whether the adversity is internal or external, here are some rules that I’d want to share with you as a part of this episode. Number one, Simplification.  

In other words, what you’ve got to look at is truly what is important, what is the core and what can be temporarily eliminated.  

As an advisor, your core is our “Magellan Core 5”, right? First, we adhere to our morning ritual no matter what. Keep your mind right.  

Second, we need to stay in the communication contact gameright? Third is that we need to make sure we serve our clients, review our clients, update their financial plans.  

Fourth, we still need to talk about introductions, referrals. We still need to be in the “Growth Mode”. Referrals and introductions are the easiest way to grow our business because it doesn’t require a campaign. 

Lastly, we would always need to keep our KPIs. We always need to track how we’re doing. So those are the Core 5.  

In other places, quite frankly, you may simply go, ” You know what? We can’t take on events right now” so we pull them off. Conferences are a no go so we pull them off. You just scrape everything off until you get to your core.  

When you’re in adversity, running a simplified model will get you through it and keep you on track. A lot of times, and I’ve had these happen pretty much every year of my career, one of my client’s key staff member will go on a maternity leave. Depending on the stage, it can be just a couple of months or sometimes maybe even almost half of the year!  

If you know that’s coming in, what happens next? We’re going to bring in a temp in or you’ll say let’s not do this and we just start pulling back some things temporarily and we keep our core moving forward.  

The other thing that you must do when you face adversity is to determine what’s important. Let’s talk about concentric circles for a second. You must take care of yourself first.  

Taking care of yourself is the first priority and I’ll explain in a bit. The second thing will be the people you care about, both personally and professionally. Then the others.  

As an example, when the airplane is ready to take off, remember what they say about the oxygen mask? “Put on YOURS first. Then help others”. That’s self-care.  

In adversity, the same rule applies. You must make sure you have a plan to take care of yourself. Be it your morning ritual, your nutrition or your exercise program.  

At some levels it may seem counterintuitive because our brains will be in crisis mode and we’ll just go ahead and attack the problem. The issue with that is you lose your edge once the adrenaline wears off.  

Once you lose your edge, you then start creating a series of bad habits and patterns that makes you less and less effective. If that happens, then you’ll really just go into survival mode.  

My strategy is designed to keep you out of survival mode. It may not be in high thrive mode but, realistically speaking, in a place where you can say, “I can handle this”.  

Again, this is not negative thinking but about preparation. So, the next time you have your team meeting or if you’re a “solo-preneur”, ask yourself and your team, “What would happen if we were unable to access our building. How would we set up shop? Think about that.  

Think about what would happen if you were unable to perform your duties as an advisor for 90 days. How would you handle that? Again, this is about thinking like a business owner. You need to recognize that. Adversity will come your way regardless of your age. 

Always have a plan B, C and D. If you’re self-aware and break your patterns down you’ll see the time where “the bill comes due”.  

At some point in your life you’re “going to pay the piper” and you don’t want to do that. Life is too precious.  

Just be honest with yourself. Am I creating some sort of potential adversity down the road for me by the way I’m living my life? Recognize those preventable or solvable problems and always have plans in place.   

That being said, thank you for listening and thank you for watching this episode of The Magellan Network Show. Love to see you. Subscribe to my YouTube channel, podcast, and  

Come check me out and let me help you.  Have a great day! 

How Dysfunctional Client Relationships Lead to a Dysfunctional Business

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Hi, this is Coach Joe Lukacs and welcome to The Magellan Network Show!

In this episode I‘m going to cover why client relational insecurities and a scarcity mentality will wreck most advisors’ careers.

What am I talking about here? Basically, I mean this. If you’re an advisor and you basically allow your clients to run your schedule, every time they call, you pick it up. Every time there’s an email, you’ve got to answer in the next 5 or 10 minutes.

You’re so afraid that you’ll get fired by a client that you operate in this fear scarcity mode.

You can never scale your business. Let me explain why. You can go ahead and make a decent/good living operating your business this way but really, what we’re talking about here is operating your mind that way.

Why do most advisors do that? I think in my work, what I have found is that there has to be a point that you pivot somewhere in your career and probably within the first three to five years in your mind you say, ” Okay. I know now how to do this business. I’m viable, I will now be profitable in where I need to go, what I need to evolve into.”

Unfortunately for a lot of advisors, they never get to have that conversation with themselves and they operate as if they were really three to four-year rookies and it’s almost always fear. Now, how do we get there?

I think a lot of it has to do with your own mindset. An advisor’s mind set. This is not about being arrogant, or cocky or anything like that. It really boils down to just being confident. See, if you’re not sure of the value it brings to the table, if you’re not sure on building those deep relationships, you’re always going to sit there and wonder about that next client phone call.

If you think about it, we all must lose clients. I as a coach, have some small turnovers every year. They die, the kids go into the business, they just want changes, or they just want to chase their own “shiny object”.

If your goal is to sit there and say to yourself, “I never want to lose a client”, it is a very bad call. In business plans that I do with my clients, we talk about a 5% attrition rate based on number of households.

Very rarely do we see it but, we would want to have that inner psychology in our thought process so when it does happen, we’re not “Oh my gosh!”, right?

And thinking about this, most advisors (especially if you’ve been around for a bit) when you got into the business, what did you do? You were making the calls, you were making the knocks, the emails and one day you said to yourself. “There’ll be a day in my career where everybody’s going to call me”.

When that starts to happen, we get all excited. We get to a point where we say “Ah! This is really cool! People needing me, I feel valuable. The problem is, you can never get your arms around your business. This doesn’t mean you can’t make a good living.

I look at the clients I have that have been with me for quite a while and have been very successful. Their approach to a client relationship is really one of partnership. It’s not that they have this multi-billion dollar business and I’m just lucky to have them so I’m just subservient to them. They don’t have that idea.

They have a partnership and while we love to retain them, there will be boundaries. For a lot of my clients, it’s about how they treat your staff, how they treat or need you, how needy or demanding they are. What we do as advisors is important but very rarely urgent.

In my world, urgent would be the death of the client or a close family member. That would mean “All hands-on deck” and let’s make things happen”. That’s where you’re going to approach us. If you do not, what you’ll end up doing is probably doing a daily game plan or a to-do-list and as soon as you get to your office, the phone is ringing, outlook is “dinging” and you’re sitting there not getting things done.

The worst part is that when somebody wants to come in. They would want to meet with you and your staff goes, “well, when can you make it.” “We’ll see you tomorrow.” No rules. So here are some you need to establish to get your control back.

1. I’d like you to create an email autoresponder that basically says something like this:

“Hey, thanks for emailing/ contacting me. I check emails once or twice a day, I will reply to this within the next 24-36 hours. If it is urgent, CALL MY OFFICE.”

A lot of people will sit there and say, “Isn’t it bad client service because you’re not handling it right there? They’ve got to call. We want them to elevate it and like what most advisors do, everything is important.

It’s because we have this insecurity around relationships. That is the first thing that I’d like you to do is to take control of your inbox and I want you to do those 2 things. The autoresponder, and most importantly, close your outlook/email.

Only open it when you need to open it like checking emails, (which we’ve done no more than 2-3 times a day). Or to send an email, which is going to be batched 2-3 times a day.

It drives me nuts when you’re sitting there and we’re having our coaching work and I hear email notifications in the background, it drives me nuts.

You’re spending top dollar here. Take note my fees aren’t that cheap. Again, the reason for this is that we’re afraid that we’re going to miss something important. There’s that fear, that scarcity, and psychology showing up.

2. When clients are due for reviews do not ask your client, “When are you available?” It needs to be that you’re in his/her slots. Reviews are just reviews.

This is not 911 stuff. 911 is a whole different animal. 98% of what you deal with is not 9-1-1.

Have review slots, and have them done within 7 to 10 days from now. That way, you’ll have time to prep, review, be orderly, and you need your calendar organized with very specific slots of how many reviews per day, what days you want to do them and what the flow is. MORE IS NOT BETTER in a lot of cases. That’s the 2nd thing I’d like you to do.

3. I’d like you to eliminate other distractions. Again, shut your browsers down. Get some block time. Do some things to get control of your day. Your team needs to take and filter the calls. They need to be trained and instructed. If you’re sitting there and you’re paying your staff and you’re dealing with stuff like your the helpdesk, that’s a problem.

Going back to the psychology of this fear, insecurity, and scarcity. If you’re driving your client relationships based on those 3 emotions, you will never have a good night’s sleep. You will always feel like you’re just one bad phone call away from losing a client. How many times have you mentally set yourself that the person is not staying with you and that you don’t feel good about the relationship?

You’ve got all these insecurities. Yet the client stays and it almost shocks you sometimes. The reality of the matter is, they are viewing the relationship in a different way and we want to have those boundaries.

Some of you would say, “Joe, if we’re not responsive, that’s not good client service.” Well, define the word responsive to me.

What are the rules around responsive? Because if I’m one of your clients and I’m coming in tomorrow for my review and instead of “prepping” for me you’re off doing this and that. You’re patching together my review and my agenda and you’re heads not in it because you’re just all over the place.

Tell me how that is good client service. Tell me how that makes me feel. Remember. What we think is important, it is very rarely urgent. We are not a trauma center.

For a lot of you, you just need to make a decision to take control back of your business. So many advisors are literally running this thing like a high paying job, but a job nevertheless thinking “Oh it’s a good day today! 15 inbound calls and we were able to do this, but I’m still wearing this as a badge of honor.”

That is a business you can’t scale. The only way you scale it, is to work harder and longer and less vacation, less renewal time and that is not what we are after here. In my mind as a profession, nor should you be as part of this industry.

Here’s a couple of things I’d like you to think about. If you have needy clients, that literally need to talk to you every day, or every other day, and stuff like that, it would probably not be good to sit there and tell somebody, that, hey, for the last 10 years I’ve talked to you every day, for 30-45 minutes (which goes on a lot more in this industry).

It becomes where you’ve got to take that call or you get on that phone and say, “Hey, thanks for calling or I’ve got 5 or 8 minutes, lets cover a couple of things because I’ve got to jump on another call or meeting.”

If you’re too accessible, it does two things. First, it sends the wrong message to our clients that we must not be that successful because we always seem to be available to just chit chat.

Second, we don’t have any rules around the client communication, relationship and it’s just literally an absolute free for all that does not serve anybody well. Can you change this?

YES! But this is all on you.

The problem is in the mirror and so is the solution as we say. You need to do this.

Scalability, sustainability is critical. We talk about the industry about how we want to be seen in the same plane as doctors and lawyers, but we don’t act like it.

We act like people who are so afraid of losing a client or a deal that we basically make ourselves appear like salespeople. How congruent is that Think about it as you go through your day.

Think about how much control you really have over your schedule. Remember you have 100% control over your calendar. If you don’t want to see people on Friday, then don’t see them. If you want to take a week off, do it! It’s your business so it’s you rules.

Top 5 Elements of a Great Daily Game Plan (Magellan Core Five)

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Recently I was asked what are the most important things an advisor needs to do? If you had to put some core principles on the table what would they be?

In this video, I’m going to cover our Magellan Core Five.

If you really think about any successful business you will find patterns and systems that are repeatable across the board. 

The first one out of the Magellan Core Five is you have to have the right morning success ritual. This does not mean to get up search through emails, social media, or watch the news. This will overload you with information and will not help you accomplish your goals. 

A proper morning ritual consists of reviewing your goals, reviewing your game plan, visualizing your success, having a conversation with yourself through journaling or exercising. 

Take the first hour of your day and get your mind right. I would personally not do this in your office, but somewhere where there are not a lot of distractions.

If you can commit to the first hour of winning your day, you’ll win the day.

I ask my advisors what they currently do in the morning when they get up and I get the same answer over and over again. “Well, Joe I check my emails, I see what’s going on in the markets, etc.” It’s like rinse and repeat over and over again.

This is why in the last 25 years you have plateaued. You can’t be doing the same thing that you’ve been doing over the last 25 years. 

If you’re looking for a breakthrough in your business you need to ask the right questions to yourself and that is:

What do I need to change about me?

What daily habits do I need to change?

What do I need to do for my daily approach to success?

That’s truly what’s most important.

Success in our world decades ago was measured by how many tickets you dropped or how much commission you made that day. You would know if you had a very successful day or not through those numbers. You would either celebrate or beat yourself up.

Times have changed and now you need to create your own game. Second, you need to see how many contacts or people you spoke with each day. This could be through emails, meetings, or calls. You need to figure out how many contacts you need to make each day. 

Typically I would recommend 10 or 15 contacts a day.

Third, is you need to get people in front of you, whether that’s at your office or through video conferencing. I recommend doing 2 – 5 of these days each day. You need to set up those meetings on your calendar each day. 

The fourth element is you need to have referral conversations. I’m not a fan of putting your clients on the spot and asking for names, by saying “Hey, do you know 3 – 5 people that need my service?”

That is not what we’re going to do. Instead, we’re going to remind our clients as we talk to them over the phone and when we have meetings with them just say “Hey, keep me in mind if there’s anyone you know we could help, just let them know.”

There are no magical referral words that exist. What really matters is you stay consistent with that.

Lastly, you need to be tracking your KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators). Assets under management, number of clients, premium, or revenue per household. You do have KPI’s, you just haven’t looked at them that way. 
What you need to do every day is to see how many contacts you made, how many meetings did you set, and how many introductory or referral conversations did you have?

These are the Magellan Core Five Principles:

  1. Morning Ritual
  2. Contacts
  3. Meetings
  4. Intros
  5. Tracking

Now think about this for a second, what would happen to your business if for five days a week you did this?

Do you think it would move the needle?

Do you think you would get more clients in the door?

I think as an industry we tend to overcomplicate things. If you’re sitting there trying to figure out workflows and technology it’s never going to give you the breakthrough you need.

The breakthrough consists of the Magellan Core Five. Until you get these five elements in place you’re never going have that breakthrough.

Why is the morning ritual so important? Because your mindset and psychology are 80% of your success. For instance, I could give you access to the highest class of marketing consultants and business consultants, but if you as the leader are not right, none of it matters. 

I was talking to a pretty successful advisor the other day and his goal was that he wants to double his business in the next 3 -5 years and bring his son into the business.

He asked me do you think it’s possible for me to double my business in the next 3 -5 years?

I told him you’re a seven-digit advisor, so you already know what to do, but the problem is you can’t do double what you’re doing. What a lot of advisors don’t realize is you can’t go from ‘x’ to ‘y’ by doubling your effort. You have to pivot your model and shift your model.

I asked him what do you think it takes to scale your business? He started getting into the more and better game. I need more of this or I need to be better at this.

Here are the three things which all business need in order to scale.

  1. Systems – You need your practice management people to come in to build your workflows out, your contact manager out, how you’re going to do reviews etc. You need that practice manual. Right
  2. People/Talent – You need the right talent in the right roles. Some of my clients are not the greatest at the HR game. They want to hire everybody and they’ll hire from the heart, so they’re not good at it. You are not an HR professional, so do not be in that place. 
  3. Mindset and Psychology of the Leader – This permeates the entire organization. It’s shocking to me on how many advisors make that an afterthought.

If you want to double your business in 3 – 5 years you need to ask the question who do I need to evolve into to become better?

Some of you have been trying to make the breakthrough the last 5 – 10 years, but your business can’t make that breakthrough for you. You need to make the breakthrough first. 

This is the greatest industry in the world, you can have complete freedom over your business and life, but you need to build it first and honor that.

Come check me out on YouTube, my website, or Spend some time with me and let me know how I can help you!

How to Optimize & Leverage Your Business for Maximum Profits

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What I’m going to do is share with you some new concepts, something that I personally work on with my coaching clients for many, many years, but really don’t talk about it here in a public forum.  

A lot of people, advisers look at me as a sort of the business plan guy, morning ritual guy, I’m the mindset guy (which I love), and those are things that absolutely have to be there as an advisor to really be successful. Along those lines, I have been around a lot of very, very successful advisers in my over 25-year career.  

What I do is, I teach and I learn. It’s truly a symbiotic type relationship. So, one of the things I truly believe in, and it’s very profitable to do is understand as an advisor, the principles of optimization and leverage.  

This not going to be a motivational chat today. This is going to be a dollar and cents chat which, if it motivates you, that’s very cool also. The principles of optimization and leverage basically means this. That in every practice, in every business, in every relationship, there are hidden opportunities, there are hidden points of leverage and let me explain.  

On the optimization side, if you look a client that you have, you have all of their money, is in an advisory, we have a net worth or financial plan, how we handle life insurance long term care, how we handle lending, tax and estate planning, I mean just think about some of the areas that you look at and can you have a column of all your clients on a spreadsheet and then across the top we have everything that we need to do right.  

Everything you could possible either provide yourself or orchestrate with another expert. So, the caveat most advisors have, is that, they think they have to know it all. Well, I don’t know much about long term care or lending. Fine. Go find somebody that does and partner with them.  

When I say “partner”, it might or might not be an economic relationship but the bottom line is, we are “quarterbacking” our client relationships. So, if we did that spreadsheet, and I say the “Okay”, so, how many of these situations can you definitively, not “I think so”, but you know as a statement of fact you’ve accomplished.  

So, client #1, do we all their money and is it in advisory, you absolutely know, you suspect or you don’t know? If you were to methodically build this out, you would find opportunities! Revenue opportunities, opportunities of a certain higher level, now it makes perfect sense. This is Business 101.  

What’s Business 101? Increase profits, increase gross revenue. Expansion. But in our industry, especially if you’ve been around for a while, how have most advisors been taught about expansion?  

Go get more clients.  No such thing as too many households, right? It’s simply not true anymore and I think, most of you know that. But I often run across situations where, I’ll be sitting with a potential new coaching client and I’ll say, ” Hey look, how optimized is your book?”.  

Do you have all your client’s money? Is it this or that? I’ll get these kinds of weird answers, but you really don’t know. And then the best part is, somebody will say, “Well no. I do. I know our clients really well, they’ve been with me for many, many years.  

I said, “You know because you’re assuming? Or you know as a statement of fact?”. And normally when I ask the question that way, it’s like, “Well, it’s a little less than when we updated their financial plan”. 

Either (A), they don’t have one or (B), it hasn’t been updated in years. “Where’s your current balance sheet/net worth statement?” “Oh…”, you know you get into those conversations. And I think a lot of these advisors look into these things as just “work”.  

Why do I want to have a net worth statement and a balance sheet for all my clients? One, it’s best practice. Two, you’ll make a lot of money. But if you’re busy chasing the next “shiny object”, it’s going to be a bit of a challenge.  

So, you’ll want to go do that. So, optimization primarily means, we look at the way it’s done. The way I teach it is, you take one relationship and ask, “What do we know about this person?”. “Do we have an updated financial plan, a net worth statement?”, “Do we know about their insurances? Do we know about their tax situation, who their attorney is?”  

If the answer is “No”, then you have a tremendous problem. I’ve been able to help clients increase their revenue by 50%. And not add 1 new household. In some cases, we do reduce the number of households because, we create an optimized business.  

What do you think about that? This will make you a lot of money depending on how you’re “consuming” this. Think about this.  

If you were to sit down for a day, or on a regular basis, again there’s a lot of different ways we can do this, and you just pull out each client methodically, and say “What DO I know as a statement of fact? What DON’T I know or I ASSUME?”, and you start looking at it and say “Wow! I do have some gaps here”.  

And for a lot of you, you’ll sit there and say, “Well, yeah. I did this person a financial plan 5 years ago. When this person came on, we did a financial plan, we validated it, we’ve done everything”, and I’d say, ” That’s great! Have you gotten back and double checked everything?”, “Well, no.”  

“Now why is that?”. Well, it’s because most advisors assume that if there is a change of status with their client, the client will say ” Hey! I’ve inherited money. I sold a piece of property, I won the lottery, whatever it is, and you will magically just get that information.  

It is not true and here’s why. One of my client’s has a very good friend of his who is also a client. So, my client was doing the review with him and I think probably a week before we had a call were I basically kind of berated him a little bit and stuck my thumb in his back probably pretty hard saying “No assumptions”.  

Assumptions in this industry cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars a year of any account. Forget the revenue side. Just income. No assumptions.  

So, he did this review with his client and he says, “I know you’re in my ear Joe” and goes, “Hey, is there anything else I need to be aware of? Are there any changes in your economic status?”, and we list, ” I’ve inherited money, sold any property, sold a business, we randomly talked about somethings that kind of get the mind going. And he says, “Yeah, well, in fact last year, my family had this piece of property, we sold it, I got some of the proceeds, and because we wanted to understand the tax scenario, we met with our accountant and he referred us to the guy down the hall and we put the money with him.”  

And could you imagine, here’s one of your best friends, you hunt things together, and the dude put his money with somebody else and you didn’t even know about it!  Well we fixed that obviously. 

I wish I could tell you that it’s rare in out space but actually, that is more common than you think. And for a lot of you/ most of you, you have similar scenarios but you’re sitting there, kind of chasing everything and not looking at the highest and best use of your time.  

One of the highest and best uses of your time is sitting down on a strategic day, which we will be working on the business and you’ll be pulling out client 1, client 2, client 3 and you’re going to ask the questions. And if you don’t have a definitive, with certainty, get on the witness stand swear an oath that I know this to be a fact answer, then you better go ahead and do a thorough review with no assumptions. That’s how we optimize.  

And as far as the other pieces go, you need to build your team. If you don’t have an expert team like insurance, long term care, or social security or anything else, then go find those experts and put them on your team and be the quarterback.  

And whether you have a revenue of scenario with them, a joint venture economically, that’s your business. I’m just saying that if you’re going to serve your clients, do it at the highest level. 

Optimization does a couple of things. One, it increases gross revenue. It blows the doors off the profits because you’re serving the clients the same way, but you got a revenue increase, that’s called secure profit. It locks out competitors.  

The more business we do, the deeper the relationship and the lesser the chance that they’re going to wander off somewhere else. There’s no need for them to go to a dinner workshop and learn about annuities or anything like that because we have it all handled “In-house”.   

In addition to that, we get an opportunity to build a deeper relationship with the other professionals, the CPA/tax repairer, their attorney, their property or casualty person, maybe their banker, you don’t know where these things are going. That’s the “leverage” part of optimization leverage.  

I can think any business and I like this as a challenge, don’t reach to me and say, “I’ll accept this!”. I may ask for some volunteers and I will do this totally contingent so don’t pay me anything.  

To increase your profits by 20, 30, 40, 50%, by running optimization. Now, you don’t need me to do this and I’m not volunteering in it right now, but that’s how strong I believe in this. Imagine sitting down, and there will some whose advisor will run great businesses (of whom I’ve worked a lot with) and I still find out hidden opportunities and a lot of times, on the leverage side.  

Remember rule number 1, “People’s economic lives are in a constant state of flux” and rule number 2,” Most will not tell you about it”. 

I don’t care how good a relationship you have. But if you’re working on the assumptive scenario, it’s costing you a lot of money. This is again, business 101.  

Improving your revenue, profit and being efficient and effective economically. Those are the things that I want you to think about for today. The last thing I’d want to say is, a lot of advisors have this “hang up” on centers of influence.  

CPAs, attorneys, property and casualty people, business coaches, business consultants, HR consultants depending on your marketplace, I can give you a plethora, sports agents, therapists, I can give you a whole literary of what a COI is, not just a CPA and attorney, and a lot of times, I think advisors get turned off is because it seems like a real pain in the tail.  

It’s just a giant numbers game and it’s all about the leverage. If I were to save you, in your book of business, if we were to have a census of all your clients, your CPA/tax repairers, attorneys, property/casualty agents, bankers, any of the professionals in their COI, if you’re a business owner, there’s going to be a lot of opportunity in there.  

If you were to sit down and list, you would probably have hundreds of opportunities to leverage and what would happen if you were to methodically, say, for the next two years, have 1-2 meetings every week with people on this list, reach out daily to 1 or 2 of them via email, invite them to connect to me via LinkedIn, all of these people.  

How much success do you really need? How many CPAs do you really need to drink your Kool-Aid for it to be meaningful? Think about that.  

This is what most advisors won’t go and do; they won’t go through the pain of rejection and failure to find the nuggets. I‘ve always found that if you meet 20 CPAs, you’ll find 1 or 2 that will be meaningful enough, that are in alignment enough, that have the right belief set where there’s really strong potential to do business together.  

But if your mindset is like “I’ve met with 3 CPAs and they were weird and just didn’t get it and didn’t want any conflicts, therefore, I go to a sample size of 3, CPAs don’t work.  

The only way I’ll accept that is if you’ve met with a hundred. If you say in your career, I’ve met with a hundred CPAs face to face, broke bread with them, chatted with them and I established no relationships, I want to hear from you.  

I want to interview you because that’ll be a first in my career. And I’ve yet to see that happen. Again, if we’re busy chasing everything, we get nothing and this is why, again if you think about it, that you when I look into building a business with an advisor, someone who’s been in the business for a bit, I’m going to look at 2 core elements. 

I’m going to look at it through optimization and leverage, as an area we’re going to really explore, and then we’re going to look at introductions and referrals from our clients as an area we would want to explore.  

These are high leverage, high-profit opportunities. You don’t need to go running around chasing everything else. If most of you will only get excellent in these two areas, you can increase your income by 30, 40, 50, 70 even 100% in the next 12-36 months.  

If you’re busy chasing everything and not become an expert in anything, you’ll make some money and it’ll feel uncomfortable because you’re all over the place. But, imagine if you got things tight. I’d just want you to think about that.  

Again, if I can help you in any way, shape or form, I’d like to do that. Keep me in mind, and thank you. 

How to Deal With Uncertainty

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Let’s face it. In your career as an advisor, you’re going to run across, hopefully, lots of situations where you’re waiting on a client or a prospect to give you the “thumbs up”. Most of the time, these tend to be big or lucrative scenarios.  

A lot of advisors are really challenged in managing their emotional states while this is going on because of the “Let me think about it”, or the “Let me get back to you” sort of thing. Recently, a couple of my clients, we had situations where they had an economically large scenario which was not their norm.  

Anytime that you get outside of your norm, the comfort level or the sensitivity can increase. Bottomline is, if you’re doing things and growing and dealing with people, remember that there is a golden rule. That is “Expect the best, but be prepared for the worst”.  

Now, this is not negative thinking and not just going into an influence situation where you’re going to give it you’re all. But you’re also going to be conscious with yourself and say, “If I don’t get this deal, if I don’t get the ‘Yes’ right now, what does that mean to me?”.  

Hopefully, there’s never going to be a life or death situation for you. Your career or situation should never put you in a position where one deal matters to your viability. You won’t be in the business that long if that’s the case.  

So, let’s talk about how to manage this. First, there’s your timeline. Then your client’s timeline and sometimes, they don’t mesh. Even though you want something done because you have a target, remember, it’s usually rare in our industry or profession that somebody is going to be compelled to do something on a deadline (unless it’s tax related, or a buy-out going on or an offer).  

I would say upwards of 80-90% of the cases you’re going to deal with of the time are open timelines. There are no “Musts” here. You have to recognize that and put yourself in their shoes. Remember, your timeline is not their timeline. 

You have to be careful on this next one. How many of you in your career, when you’ve got a deal on your board, tried to figure out how much money you’re going to make? And when it doesn’t happen in your timeline or gets delayed, you think that they stole the money from you?  

If you do this, you’ve got to do yourself a favor and stop it. You’ll get compensated, don’t sit there and don’t be cocky because it’ll make the situation worse because you will think that you already have the money when you really don’t.  

The other thing you’re going to do is figure out how to deploy that money. So, at the moment, you’ll be going down an imaginary trail. What you would want to do is, come back, work with the situation, and don’t get caught up in it. 

You need to practice this consciously.  When you’re waiting on a decision, what is that? Let’s talk about that for a second. If you’re in front of the biggest client or prospect you’ve ever worked with, or an insurance case and it looks good, it doesn’t die early.   

It goes through the process and you’re in that “are they going to do it or not” zone we all know about. What you have be very aware of is the trigger for most human beings. Emotion. There are 2 types of emotions.  

If you’ve been following me you know about these. First are things that we want to experience, success, love, connection, excitement, freedom, enthusiasm. And then there are the emotions we don’t want to feel like rejection, failure, scarcity, and uncertainty. 

When you have a deal and it’s not yet done, and depending on how you’re wired, you’re going to have uncertainty. For most people, it can really shut you down. I just had this recently with a client who had the biggest insurance deal of his career. A 6-figure compensation. 

He went through the scenario game and he became stuck. He wasn’t able to focus on anything. As soon as that happens, your morning ritual, daily game plan and effectiveness is gone.  And when the phone rings, you won’t know what to think and your heart jumps.  

Think about all that emotional volatility you’re going through. When this happens, how effective or focused are you? Chances are, you’re not. This happened to me when I was just starting and I realized later on that I couldn’t be effective if I was worrying about yes’ and no’s.  

Stoicism. It’s an art or science wherein you’re taking your emotions and you’re compressing them down to a level where you’re eliminating all that emotional volatility (not to the point where you become a robot). When you become stoic, you stay in a “resourceful state”.  

By staying in that state, you’ll be able to make your calls, ask for referrals, basically you can do the business. When you’re un-resourceful, you’ll be all over the place. You won’t be in the game.  

Think of it this way. What happens when you don’t get the deal? You get super depressed and you go down the bunker. On the surface, in one scenario, it may not seem like a big deal. But if you extrapolate that in your 20, 30, or 40-year career, you’ll be thinking how much that opportunity cost you.  

Remember that there’s the lost opportunity of “No, not right now”. But then, what happens? I’ve seen clients that, when they lose the deal, they’re literally in the mental tank for a week. You might as well have gone to Tahiti, sink your feet in the ocean and have a cocktail because that’s how effective and productive you are.  

I need you to determine it in advance, so here are the questions. Whenever you’re in an exciting situation, ask yourself. What’s the worst thing that could possibly happen? I consciously ask myself that question when I deal with a new potential client, a corporate situation or anything that has to do with success or failure.  

If they say “No”, it means, the timing’s not right and that it may happen in the future so, let’s not burn the bridge. It also means I just don’t get the opportunity. Hopefully it’s not a make or break thing for a lot of you because I don’t help you exist in that way.  

You can create the scenario and I’d like you to focus on the negative situations because it’s all in the consequences. As long as it doesn’t really change your world, remember that it’s not life or death and all it means is that you just didn’t get the opportunity this time.  

In my 25-year career, I’ve always told myself that I’ll never be in a scenario that will make or break my coaching career. I’ve been in cool, enjoyable, and lucrative scenarios but they’ll never make or break me because I will never allow them to.  

If your business model is like feast or famine, I would strongly ask you to reconsider your approach because that it’s not good for anybody. Just remember that. So, how do we reduce uncertainty? Talk to yourself. Stay conscious. Have conversations. And like I said, remember that your timeline is not their timeline. That’s super important. 

Now, let’s say you do get the “Yes”. There’ll be a window between getting the “Yes” and getting the money depending on what the deal is. And then they call, or worse, just get an email that says, “Hey, we need to talk.”. At that point, where do most human brains go?  

It goes right – negative and say, “Oh my God they’re going to say no” or “They’re going to back out”. You get this pit in your stomach because now, when is it really done?  

Not because you get a positive (and as a profession we know this), people don’t always pull out until the 11th hour and in some cases, even if you’ve got the policy delivered, they can still rescind the policy.  

A lot of things can go wrong. Again, this is not negative thinking but managing your emotional state. You must do that to be effective as a professional.   

Today, what I really want you to focus on is, to manage your state, your expectations, understand that human beings are creatures of habit but yet unpredictable. Just make sure that you’ll have enough opportunity in your pipeline where there’s not one of them that will cause you a “make or break” scenario. You’d want to have stuff going on so that it doesn’t happen.  

In your career, you’re always going to have an economical scenario that will be outside your bubble regardless of your tenure. There are comfortable opportunities for growth but there are also the uncomfortable ones. I can’t tell you how many times in my career that I’ve had these scenarios come up with my clients.  

They ask me “What do I need to do” and I tell them, treat them the same way you do with everybody. Just because they have some extra zeroes at the end of their account balance doesn’t mean anything. I think that’s what we need to be also aware of as a profession.  

We focus on the person and the wealth is secondary.Unfortunately, some advisors invert that where they see the portfolio balance or the net worth statement and think this person is different. As soon as that goes into your mind, you’ll be off your game.  

And how many of you have bent your own internal rules because you treated a big deal differently? You allowed them to run the meetings a little bit more and didn’t ask the questions because you didn’t want to potentially offend them.  

This is all about getting control of your mindset and recognizing that you have to do things exactly the same way each and every time. Protocols. You need to have your own protocols no matter who you’re dealing with. 

Last thing to fix this uncertainty piece is your morning ritual or your mental diet. Understanding how you’re wired is super important. Be consciously aware of how you approach things.  

You still have options even if they say “No”. You can either take the rest of the day off, go to a bar or whatever. Take time to process it. Just put a deadline on it so that it won’t leak into your other days. 

Declare your strategies in advance. Go on an automatic “gratitude mode”. Be grateful. You have a great family, a great life, a great house, and remember all the great things that you’ve done.  

My secret strategy is that after I’ve done my “me” time after a deal gone wrong, I come back and go into “marketing mode”. I busy myself and contact prospects, ping my pipeline and fill that funnel back. That’s a real good strategy. 

Remember that line from the “Rocky” franchise? “It’s not how hard you hit. It how hard you can be hit, fall down and get back up and keep moving forward”. I never forgot that.  

That’s a great metaphor for life. You’re going to have great adversity. Things aren’t always going to go your way. It’s all about getting off your butt, keep playing the game and moving forward. 

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Joe is not only a great source of information but he is a great inspiration as well more.
—Douglas Chapman
Senior Financial Strategist, Phoenix Life Insurance
Joe's guidance, knowledge, and support has helped me radically change my professional and personal life. I would not be where I am today without him more.
—Brooks Cory
Joe’s advice and creativity has been a crucial component of my success in the financial services business. He understands what it takes to succeed more.
—Fredrik Borstad

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Joe is not only a great source of information but he is a great inspiration as well.

— Douglas Chapman
Senior Financial Strategist, Phoenix Life Insurance

Joe’s guidance, knowledge, and support has helped me radically change my professional and personal life. I would not be where I am today without him.

— Brooks Cory

Joe’s advice and creativity has been a crucial component of my success in the financial services business. He understands what it takes to succeed.

—Fredrik Borstad