As a follower of Steve Lewitt- I thought his take on the future and the DOL was worth sharing. Our world is changing- better or worse is a matter of opinion. Our firm is ready for the challenge. Call us and we can help you get ready.
FROM STEVE LEWITT:
Okay, you’re getting it in stereophonic, high resolution and surround sound – the DOL Ruling is here!
The question is if this is one of those things we don’t expect that’s really good for us – that would make it a serendipitous event; or is it zemblanity, something that’s come about that should make you unhappy?
In my world I always make lemons into lemonade, so it doesn’t matter to me whether it’s a serendipitous or zemblanitous event. Either way I’m good, as so you should be too. Let’s see why.
Steve Lewit’s Selling World
Let’s face it, most consumers do not hold us advisers in the highest of esteem. In a recent Deloitte study, researchers found that 58% of Americans don’t have a formal retirement plan in place. One potential reason for this is rampant mistrust in the financial services industry. Only 2 out of every 10 polled said they had trust in financial services providers. Looked at from the other end of the scope and that means that 80% said they do not have trust in financial service providers. I’ll repeat that – 80% of our potential clients do not trust us. That’s almost on par with car salespeople, who are the lowest on the trust list.
That’s not all. While I’ve searched for the quote (I’ll find it sooner or later), a well know financial person said something like, “I love the DOL Ruling. Think about it. The industry has been telling people for 20 years that it doesn’t do things that are necessarily in their best interests, and the DOL Ruling corrects that. The problem is, people don’t know that they haven’t been getting the best advice and they have little or no idea about the DOL Ruling.”
Look at it this way, you need to balance the DOL Ruling’s “red tape” with the benefit of being able to look your client in the eye, educate them on the meaning of Fiduciary, how business has been done in the past (not by you, of course) and that the industry has taken a major step forward (and has finally begun to catch up with what you’ve been doing for years).
Now, if you aren’t securities licensed already, you might be saying to yourself that the heat is on you to get your Series 65 and become an RIA or IAR. Sure, that’s a bunch of work and, in fact, we’ll probably see a bunch of people drop out of the industry because of that (along with the lowering of up front commissions on FIA production). While I feel badly for those people, there’s another part of me that just says “tough luck”. If you’ve been a one trick pony pushing as many qualified assets into FIAs as you can for a living, or for others, pushing as much as you can into the market so you can manage it, and you want to stay in that mode, it’s probably time you hung it up anyway. Those days are simply over! Today’s advisor needs to be holistic in practice, unbiased in advice and put the client first no matter what. That means using market and insurance products objectively without pushing people one way or the other.
Making lemon into lemonade requires a little effort. In my practice I’m preparing; as part of my client take home package (I give out after the first meeting), I am including information that puts meat on the DOL Ruling and how it performs and benefits our clients and the general population. If you want to make this Ruling work for you then you must bring it to light and make it part of your practice. If not, it will just be a Ruling which, in your mind, is just another pain in the butt levied on you by a government organization.
Is the DOL Ruling glass half empty or half full for you? If it’s half empty and you are in the zemblanity camp, I suggest you take a few minutes (or hours) to chill and think this thing through. Once you get your left-brain around it you are going to find that the glass is really more than half full and the DOL Rule is a serendipitous event. Your choice, of course!
Until next time,
CEO & Co-Founder
New Science of Selling