Conversely, every time we read the news, we see that disengagement is rampant in our culture:
- Roughly ½ of marriages end in divorce.
- 1.2 million high school students are dropping out every year.
- Roughly 2/3 of the American population is overweight or obese.
- By the age of 22, 70% of young people are dropping out of organized religion and the church.
- 22 million workers in the United States are actively choosing to be not engaged in their work.
This got me to thinking. If you’re not all in, you might as well be all out.
What is all consuming to me? Is it something vital, lasting, valuable and unique?
My relationships with my wife and family are all consuming to me. We’re expecting our second grandchild any day now and we feel blessed to be a part of our growing family. My daughter and business partner, Christina, will be taking a well deserved maternity leave for the next month, as she allows herself to fully embrace motherhood. We couldn’t be more excited for her to become fully engaged in this new role, just as she has become engaged in the role she’s taken on as financial advisor these past few years since she joined my practice.
As financial advisors, we have an amazing opportunity to be fully engaged and to engage our clients. We can bring a message of hope to our clients as their advisor. Our clients are looking not just for financial advise, but for a path that leads them to a richer life in retirement, with all the things that fully engage them -- family, activities, travel, hobbies, or even a second career.
A key to having a life that is engaged is having a “sounding board.” As advisors, we have an important job to not only give our clients solid financial advice but also to be the sounding board to hold them accountable for the dreams and plans that they’ve shared with us. Just because there’s been a change in the market, doesn't mean they should derail their plans and completely change direction with the whims of the market. Our job is to remind them of what they hold dear and to stay the course.
We need to be fully present in the conversation. We have to be involved with clients to understand what is important to them. Clients will see through if you are only in this profession for the money. I’ve always said that if you can take care of the client, the rest will take care of itself.
If we are fully engaged as advisors, we have the ability to help our clients to realize their dreams and become more engaged in their own lives. That’s really quite a gift, if you think about it.