“When you show deep empathy toward others, their defensive energy goes down, and positive energy replaces it. That’s when you can get more creative in solving problems.” – Stephen Covey
I’m thinking about you.
I remain holed up here at the lake for the summer, obsessing over one thought: Who do you want to become?
To honestly and properly answer this question requires a concerted effort for me to empathize with you. I am doing my very best to walk a mile in your shoes, to try as best I can to imagine your fears and anxieties. How would I be feeling if I were you? What would I be longing for?
The reason understanding this is so important to me is because more and more we measure the value of what we buy (goods and services) not by what they do, but by who they help us become. We place a high value on goods and services that help us achieve a personal transformation, so I want to understand how I can best help you achieve that. My hunch is that what you want is different from what you need. You might need help improving your business, but why do you want it? What will it get you? What do you hope for?
People hire an advisor to double their investments. That’s what they need, but they want help transforming into something else, a better version of themselves. I suspect that when they don’t get this transformation, one or two things will happen. They will either change advisors, or opt to pay the same one less. And really, who can blame anyone for paying as little as possible?
So it’s in your best interest to become priceless. The value you bring to your customers is personal transformation; the investments and advice are just the tools that you use to help foster this transformation.
What would your day look like if instead of telling people what you do (what you get paid to do) you instead talked about who you are and what you believe and offered to help them see the world through your lens?
What if you spent more of your time thinking about your customers and who they want to become, and how you can help them get there? Forget everything you believe about what the job of your job is, and help your clients solve the real problem they have – getting what they really want.
Become a life coach.
Here is a thought: I wonder if your clients even know what they want themselves?
Empathy isn’t our strong suit, which is unfortunate because empathy is precisely what the marketplace needs from us.
One final thought – a non sequitur even: Make sure you take a good amount of time off for yourself to get quiet and think slowly this summer. I’ve been having a great week of it so far, and I’m just getting started.