Steven R. McCarty
LifeHealthPro.com/author/steven-mccarty BEST PRACTICE
When was the last time you had a restful night’s sleep? Can’t remem- ber? You’re not alone. According to
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 50-70 million U.S. adults have
problems sleeping, leading them to wake up
chronically tired and ill equipped to function
at work. But here’s what I really want to know.
Does Bernie Madoff, the notorious Ponzi
schemer, sleep like a baby at night?
My bet is he does, for a number of sordid
reasons. But your average financial advisor is
no Bernie Madoff. He’s much more likely to
worry about the consequences of his actions.
And the resulting stress can become a distraction at work, lowering productivity, sales and
income. Talk about worries!
But here’s what’s sad. So many such
incidents are self-inflicted. Perhaps advisors
accumulate too much debt in order to acquire
the trappings of wealth. Or they manage their
income and/or expenses sloppily. Or they just
want to attend exotic sales conferences at any
cost, leading them to make unsuitable annuity
sales, churn investment products, or misrepresent features to serve their own needs. Or
they might write insurance on phony prospects in order to pocket the commissions or
convince Grandpa and Grandma to let him invest their savings … and then use their money
for her own purposes.
No wonder so many advisors stare at the
ceiling at 3:00 a.m., wondering where their
integrity went (although maybe not in the last
And it gets worse. When advisors allow
their ambition and greed to rule, it’s common
for them to experience damaging after-effects,
including client complaints, E&O insurance
claims, regulatory sanctions, jail time, and
worst of all, loss of self-respect. Of course,
there’s a better way to avoid such problems
and ensure maximum success … no-worry
No-worry selling consists of a number of
values that appear across the sales process,
• Doing what’s right for the prospect or cli-
ent, even if it’s not legally required.
• Treating the customers with loyalty and
• Following all relevant regulations and
laws, both national and local.
• Putting the client’s needs ahead of your
• Being committed to delivering tangible
value to your customers in every transac-
• Being there for your prospects and clients
— before, during, and after the sale.
• Being transparent about your background,
capabilities and limitations.
• Operating under the spirit and the letter
of the new Department of Labor Fiduciary
standard (when it takes effect).
Advisors who aspire to no-worry selling
must implement the above values into the following sales-process stages:
• Post-Sale Service
In future columns, we’ll explore each of
those areas in greater detail to see what a no-
worry sales style looks like and why it leads to
ultimate success. Until then, consider these
suggestions for selling ethically (and sleeping
like a baby at night):
• Never get a sales meeting under false
• Be up front about who you are and what
• Never misrepresent for whom a product is
best suited or how it works.
• Always take the long view on client relationships, i.e. never forcing sales because
you want or need more income.
• Watch for — and avoid — behaviors that
benefit you more than the customer.
• Read The Wizard of Lies by Diana B.
Henriques to see the full human cost of
unbridled greed. RA
The sleep aid for sales superstars
Are you employing sales
strategies that allow you
to sleep at night?
Go to this article on
to discuss ethical sales