Remember Narcissus? He was the beautiful youth in Greek mythology who refused all offers of love. As punishment for his indifference, he was made to fall in love with his own image, eventually pining away and turning into a flower.
Does the financial services business have too many narcissists — advisors who are too busy contemplating their own “beauty” to care much about anyone or anything else? I believe it does. Here are some telltale symptoms.
Being blinded by one’s goals – Many advisors get distracted by money, toys, and the latest hot product or selling system. As a result, they lose sight of the fundamental value they could bring to their clients over the long term.
Viewing the world only through the blinders of personal experience – Some advisors seem incapable of seeing life through another’s eyes, of empathizing with others. This encourages bending or even breaking the rules. If you’re not convinced, just read the advisor sanctions on the FINRA Web site.
Striving to produce short-term rather than long-term results – Many advisors lack the patience to wait for good things to unfold over time. They’ve forgotten that good things come to those who wait.
Believing the world revolves around them – For these advisors, clients represent the future value of a series of payments. In Finance 101 terms, they’re viewed as annuities, not human beings. No client wants to be viewed as a revenue stream.