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Life Health > Running Your Business

The importance of discipline and detail

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Do you ever wish you were more successful in the financial services industry? Do you ever find yourself wondering why others have $10 million to $20 million in production while you only have $5 million or less?

If you want to get over that hump and hit those lofty goals, look at the “foundations” of your business — discipline and detail. One of the greatest leaders of World War II, perhaps one of the greatest leaders in history, was General George S. Patton, Jr. He has often been referred to as “Old Blood and Guts.” General Patton accomplished great things on the battlefield. He was responsible for the capture and imprisonment of 1.25 million Germans. He injured or killed over a half million of his enemies. He accomplished this with an army of only 250,000 soldiers. Two things certainly contributed to his success. General Patton mentored under General John J. Pershing.

From this great leader, he learned the importance of discipline and attention to detail. Patton further understood that he could not fight his battles alone; therefore, he trained and surrounded himself with soldiers who were inspired by their general to achieve things that many considered impossible. Of the controversial general, Harold Alexander wrote, “He loved his men and they loved him. I have been with him at the front when he was greeted with demonstrations of affection by his soldiers, and there were — as I saw for myself — tears running down his cheeks.”

As with Patton, a great way to reach your greatest potential is in finding a successful mentor, someone who shares your vision and values. With a successful mentor, it offers you an opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes look at what makes a practice work: you might spend time on the road, attend seminars, even sit in on meetings with prospects and clients, where you have a front row seat to view of the marketing and client relations support team that allows a producer to generate successful leads and have the time to follow up on them.

Let me make it clear that there is no “magic bullet” for success; there’s no winning the lottery in your future. Along with discipline and detail, success comes through relationships, staff, focus and passion. Also, as I said before, it’s important that you surround yourself with people who share your ethical beliefs and standards. Just like General Patton, you want people you can trust when you’re in the foxhole; it’s those people who keep everything in the office running smoothly and efficiently, so you can conduct seminars and hold appointments with prospects.

Richard Berry is the president and owner of Berry Financial Group, Inc. in Dillon, S.C. Responses and questions can be sent to [email protected].


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