I’d like to start this post by saying thank you to all my readers for the great feedback on my October 8 blog, “Advice for the NexGen Advisor: Be Yourself.” I’ve received hundreds of emails and stories from both young advisors and seasoned ones: thank you for sharing your own stories with me.
I also received feedback from many of my own clients, which has raised some additional thoughts on the same topic. One of my owner-advisors captured the general sentiment when he emailed: “As you know, I’ve struggled with being true to myself, and still do. What you do for me is to validate my thought process and help me work with my insecurities.” This advisor is talking about an often-overlooked aspect of learning to be ourselves: recognizing and working with our own shortcomings. In my experience, this is the hardest aspect of becoming a better advisor—and a better business owner—but it is also usually the key to success.
As it turns out, the things we’re insecure about often really are our weakest areas. Ironically, though, when we give in to our fears of inadequacy and try to ignore or deny our shortcomings, we give them more power than they should really have, thus greatly reducing our chances of success. On the other hand, if we can get advisors to face the things they aren’t good at, they can almost always get better at them, work around them or find another solution for the problem.