My friend Paul Dunn referred me to a TedX speech by Tony Robbins. It is an extraordinary speech in that I understand it is the only TedX speech to have gone longer than the allotted 18 minutes – a strict rule with TedX. It is worth watching to see the ingenious way in which Tony grabbed an extra couple of minutes to make his final point. But it is also important because of the content. Take a look here: http://bit.ly/mdU5K2.
Tony is the master of helping people change their lives for the better. In his 30 years of high profile work, he has identified six needs that all humans have to various degrees:
I find these needs to be a useful checklist in the work I do with accountants to help them identify their key driver – there will often be one or two out of the six that are what Tony refers to as your lead system(s). Listen out for these as you are talking with your clients. Here are some examples:
“We’ve always got something new on the go. I feel out of control.” A sign of someone searching for more CERTAINTY. Help them focus on their strategy and get them implementing a small number of projects.
“I thought it would be exciting running my own business. It’s actually pretty mundane.” This is someone striving for UNCERTAINTY. A planning session could help them create a new strategy that will spark their flame.
“I feel as though I just turn up, do the job and then go home again. There must be more to it than that.” This person needs SIGNIFICANCE. Workshop with them what they would like their legacy to be. Then work with them to implement a strategy to help them achieve that, shortening timeframes from retirement date, to 10 years, 3 years, 1 year and then quarter by quarter. Projects must work towards the desired legacy.
“It’s lonely being a sole trader.” Missing CONNECTION. Some people thrive on their own. Others really miss interacting with others. Bring them together with your other clients. You should have a strategy to create networks and communities within your client (and prospect) base.
“We’ve been doing the same thing for 10 years. I’m bored.” This person needs GROWTH. Either personal growth – learning something new to help them develop new skills – or business growth, enabling them to exercise new skill sets. You can help with both.
“I’d like to be able to give something back.” Find out what is driving this. They are searching for CONTRIBUTION. Either to their community or perhaps elsewhere. Back into growth and profitability improvement as a means to achieving that end.
Keeping these basic needs in mind will help you ask the right questions as you assist your clients to really understand their goals and objectives.