Grow Your Financial Services Business in a Crisis – Lockdown Lessons | by Gary Das

Advisers can find opportunity to grow business in a crisis

How can IFA’s, mortgage and insurance advisers find opportunities and grow a business in a crisis?

As I share this, we are still in the midst of the Covid pandemic, and in our second lockdown.

This is a good opportunity then to talk to you about how we can deal with a crisis, and how you as an IFA, mortgage or insurance adviser can build a business in this crisis to come out stronger than ever.

You will learn how to come out the other side with a healthier, happier, stronger, fitter and better mortgage adviser business.

I’m going to share with you 2 key areas that, as an IFA or mortgage adviser, are essential to focus on in a crisis.

By focussing on these 2 key areas you will make sure that actually your business can grow and stay focused, rather than worrying about what’s going to potentially be on the other side.

And we’ll look at how you can maximise the opportunity that is now sitting in front of you.

I’m going to be sharing what I’m doing in my brokerage and in my business and in my mindset so that you can do the same things too.

Read on to get the full story here.

If you prefer to watch, then check out my video on this topic.

Focus on what you can control

Let’s talk about mindset first. It’s easy to get overwhelmed in a crisis. You know the government is saying one thing. And then if you read scientific data, it’s telling you something else. The only thing that you can do is focus on what you can control.

My advice is: Do not listen to the news, do not listen to the stuff that’s on social media. Do not listen to the negativity.

Unsubscribe, unfollow, unfriend, whatever it is that gets your mind into a space where actually it can be receiving better information. Put positivity into your mind.

So that’s the first thing in strategic thinking. Focusing on the mindset, the knowledge and the actions you can control over the course of the next four, five, 10 weeks or more.

In a Crisis Advisers Need to Think Differently

Where I seem to really thrive is where I’m almost at the bottom of the barrel. You know, when the roller coaster is at the bottom. And up is the only way left. That is where opportunity can be found.

That’s when you have to pivot and change. That is when you need the brain space for some strategic thinking.

In some of my groups, there’s so much negativity around. There’s so much worry and dismay and fear, but the fear is what keeps you stuck.

The fear is what’s going to stop being able to get to the other side and go forward.

I’ve never been scared to fail.

I’ve always been able to push through and take a lot of action, knowing that actually:

“The successes are on the other side of the potential of failure.”

 So my first bit of knowledge for you is to think strategically.

Key questions to ask yourself:

  • How can you make the most of this opportunity?
  • What can you do in order to be able to come out the other side stronger, with a better business?
  • What can you do to get more leads, more sales, and better clients?

I’m going to go over how to tackle each of these challenges in the following sections.

Prioritise your business focus

Now, I always reference building a brokerage as a lifestyle business. Short-term pain for long-term gain. Time and energy put in at the start mean you can step back later.

You may be thinking, I don’t have time.

That is a fallacy, that is rubbish. You do have time. If you actually take your diary and write in it in half an hour increments, everything that you do during the day, you will find the time.

It’s about setting business priorities

You need to understand that there are points where you have to make sacrifices.

And this is what I’ve done in my journey over the last four or five years in order to be able to get to the point where I am now.

Now is the time to be strategic. A crisis is the ideal time to step back and evaluate what is working and what isn’t.

The majority of my job is strategic thinking for the business.

So you need to allocate the time. It could be a few extra-long days. It could be making sure that your partner is bought into your business to get you where you need to go.

Now, there were points where I had to do seven-day weeks back in 2018 and 2019 in order to put a new system into the business. But that short-term pain of working those 12 hour days, seven day weeks gave me back freedom and flexibility.

Pivot and change

So here are the 2 key areas that, as an IFA or mortgage adviser, are essential to focus on in a crisis.

Key point 1 – Use this crisis to build your business relationships

The first thing I’m going doing now is focusing on introducers and building relationships with introducers. You have an opportunity now in lockdown to contact every single introducer in your local area.

There are going to be accountants. There are going to be divorce lawyers. There are going to be people out there right now who are not able to go to their office, who are potentially going to have more time on their hands than they did before.

And if you didn’t capitalise before, capitalise now on the opportunity.

Make some phone calls, get in contact with these people to build your network. Be it through social media, be it online, be it through starting a Facebook group.

Having more connections with more people is what’s going to get you more results.

Building introducer partnerships is one of the big things that has made a massive difference to my brokerage, and to my relationships over the course of the last two, three years.

And I’m going to be focusing on that heavily over the course of the coming weeks, but not just what I’m going to get from it. I’m going to be focusing on what I can do for the other people.

Examples of introducer relationships

So for example, let’s look at accountants. One of the best ways in which we attract accountants to refer to us is the fact that we can simplify their business. If they’re dealing with multiple different brokers and their clients are going to multiple different brokers, then the issue is they have to deal with is multiple different ways of working.

By funnelling business through you, they’re simplifying their process. They’re making their life easier. They’re having a better understanding of how things work and that makes life a hell of a lot easier for them.

All of a sudden, their time is reduced because they’re not being pulled from pillar to post by clients who don’t have a clue and getting fed information from multiple different sources.

Let’s look at another example. There’s been many a divorce through this crisis, as I’m sure there are stronger relationships that have come out of it as well.

How many divorce lawyers in your area have you built partnerships with? How many solicitors have you connected with?  

Questions to ask yourself:

  • Who else has access to the clients that you absolutely love to work with that could refer to you?  
  • Who would like a secondary income stream where they don’t have to do anything other than refer the clients you love?

Your network equals your results.

Gary Das

Be an introducer

This works the other way too.

For example, this is where I think a lot of people in financial services get trapped. You have a fear about referring any piece of business or any name and number to somebody else.

I see it all too often in my groups. You ask questions about something that you’ve never done before, like a bridging loan for example. When you’ve never done it.

Why would you waste time trying to learn to do something new, when at the present time you don’t need to scrap for every deal?

You’re better off doing five first-time buyer mortgages, which is what you know exactly how to do, without wasting time learning how to do bridging finance at the present moment.

Give it to somebody else, focus on what you can control and do more of what you can do, which will take you half of the amount of time.

Make referrals and, you’ll still get 25% kickback from the person that you’ve referred it to.

So introducers is a massive area.

Let me know in the comments if this is making sense to you as well, because I would love to hear your feedback and whether this is something that is going to hit the right note in terms of what you can do to change your business.

Key Point 2 – Develop Your Insurance Offering

The second thing outside of introducers that I’m going to be focusing on is insurance. Now here’s a little issue. One for you that may hit a nerve.

Mortgages are a trap. They keep you stuck.

The thing that I love more about the insurance world over the mortgage world is that it’s completely proactive. Insurance is a proactive environment.

Everybody needs it, but not many, very few actually really want it.

But the advantage of the insurance aspect is that no one’s chasing you to submit their application, and no one is on your case. No one is pressuring you day in, day out.

When you are working with mortgages and you want to go on holiday or go out with your family for the day, and all of a sudden, the mortgage offer goes tits up.

Then your whole job is focused on trying to sort that out rather than doing what you love with whom you love.

On the other hand, insurance brokerage is completely proactive. It’s providing quotations, it’s providing illustrations.

But the difference is you’ve not got estate agents to deal with. You not got solicitors calling you. You’re not constantly as someone else’s beck and call.

Insurance is about relationships.

You build relationships with your clients. It’s not just about a transaction of the mortgage that you’re going to be focusing on.

It’s about the client.

It’s saying: “Let me look at you. Let me understand you what your future is about, what goals, your aspirations and dreams and wishes you have, what you want to do with your children. Are they going off to university and school etc…”

It’s looking at everything now, and then tailoring the offer for the client: “Right, based on what you’ve told me today, these are the things that you need to have in place in order to make sure that your life doesn’t change.”

Now you’ve got so many different insurers. You’ve got medical conditions. You’ve got all the little additions that get chucked onto the policy.

But the big thing here is if you want to be the best mortgage broker, I’m a firm believer that you actually become an insurance broker first because it will always be your priority.

Your Action plan

So you can change your opportunity over the course of the next few weeks.

Some people are going to sit back and do nothing. Others are going to take every bit of information from this, and you may be one of those. You’re going to take every piece of this and you’ve written down some notes and you’re going to get cracking on it.

Here is Your Adviser Action Plan:

  • Look at your business strategically and focus on the areas that you can control.
  • Get rid of the naysayers, get rid of negativity from your life.
  • Focus on all the different aspects of your business. Draw it out on a whiteboard in front of you, put in mortgage and then focus on every product and area that you can look at.
  • Build relationships, not just with introducers that you could get leads from, but also with partnerships that you can actually refer to.
  • Start calling your existing clients back. “Hey, I haven’t spoken to you in 18 months and you’re on a five-year fixed rate. Just giving you a call, see how you’re getting on. Oh yeah. I can see you haven’t got this product…”
  • Try and get a referral for them over to whichever person it is they need. Because if you’re always going to get a kickback for doing absolutely nothing, and that’s going to transform your income, and you have a database of opportunity.

Stop focusing on the transaction and start focusing on the future of your business by building better relationships with your clients.

That is going to be our goal.

How would you like 30 new leads in the next 30 days?

Let me show you how it’s possible with the 30/30 Formula

  • Get 30 inspirational ideas to generate more leads
  • Get more customers, attention and sales
  • Create your own automated lead engine

Bonus tip:

If you don’t know about the Kickstart scheme, that is coming into effect. The Kickstart scheme is effectively a job placement scheme to help the unemployed find work.

You get a person between the ages of 18 and 24. The government will pay for them for up to six months. You don’t have to pay anything at all. They will even give you £1500 for taking on the Kickstarter.

At the end of the six months, you have the opportunity to employ them. Full-time or put them onto an apprenticeship scheme.

We are getting three Kickstarters. We should hear this week in relation to our registration. You can find out more about this scheme HERE:

So you can be looking at opportunities to grow your adviser business, even in a crisis.

If you don’t do this now, you will never do this. You have an opportunity. If you didn’t maximise the last one, then you’re going to miss out again.

Take the chance now to transform your life, transform your business, transform your mindset. Think strategically do things differently.

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