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A tale of two advisors

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Here’s one of my favorite hypothetical scenarios: Let’s imagine two professionals in the same field. We’ll call them Advisor A and Advisor B. They have the same educational background, the same training and the same resources and connections. They even have similar personalities and work ethics. But when we put them out in the field, Advisor A does better than Advisor B.

If these advisors are virtually identical in every respect, how can their results be so much different? The simplest explanation is that for each, the way his world is occurring to him is fundamentally different. Each views his work, the people he interacts with and, of course, himself through an entirely different prism.

Advisor A might see his work as being important to the people he works with—something they need in their lives. He may believe that the world is as a safe and friendly place, where what he has to offer is welcome. He may see clients and prospects as open and interested to doing what they need to do for their families. And he may see the people he works with as good people who are there to support him.

Advisor B, on the other hand, may have a different view of his world. Maybe his world is a difficult, unfriendly place, where he has to struggle to succeed. Maybe he sees himself as a “salesperson,” someone who bothers his prospects when he contacts them. Perhaps he sees clients and prospects as closed, difficult and deceitful and the people he works with as making his life more difficult.

When Advisor B feels he is not succeeding, he tries to imitate Advisor A or enrolls in yet another course to learn another way to do what he already knows how to do. He experiments with the latest and most advanced strategies and language nuances and finds that none of them work.

Of course they don’t work. All this effort is like picking the apples off someone else’s tree and trying to tape them to your own, withering stump. This approach simply will not yield new ripe fruit.

If you identify with Advisor B, you should understand that it is a mistake to try to solve your work performance problems with more information. You already know enough to succeed. What you need is transformation — a change in the way your world is occurring for you. To put it another way, it’s your “inner game” that needs fixing, not your “outer game.”

Work on your worldview, change your inner game and notice the positive people and things around you. You’ll automatically change your results — guaranteed.

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Sandy Schussel is a speaker, business trainer and coach who helps sales teams develop systems to win clients. He is the author of “The High Diving Board” and “Become a Client Magnet.” For more information, go to


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