We have all seen it before: the Financial Planning Pyramid. It has been a part of insurance company training manuals since they were written on parchment. Perhaps it is time for us to dust off this trusty old diagram and find a new way to integrate it into our toolbox of conceptual selling ideas.
Advisors have traditionally used the Financial Planning Pyramid to show prospects a suggested framework for their financial plan. But by putting a new twist on this old idea, we can show them the potentially disastrous results of failing to plan properly. We can also use the diagram to bring to attention existing gaps in their current financial plan.
The next time you meet with a prospect, present a copy of the pyramid and try the following approach. The first part of the approach is classic, but the second part takes the discussion one step further with some important probing.
Build a strong foundation
Financial planning is a broad term that encompasses a wide range of issues. Simplify it for your prospect by using the Financial Planning Pyramid. Explain that the diagram is a suggested framework for addressing one’s financial needs in a logical order.
To build a pyramid, you start by establishing a firm, stable foundation; then, you work your way up. The same approach applies when building a solid financial plan. The first step is to articulate and prioritize your goals. The balance of the financial planning process stems from a clear understanding of your objectives. By offering a visual to the prospect, the importance of goals becomes apparent.
Safeguard against surprise expenses