What You Need to Know
- You know the market has its ups, and its downs.
- Some clients cannot live with the downs.
- You have a path to choose.
In the 2009-2010 NFC Championship Game, the Minnesota Vikings and the New Orleans Saints were tied 28-28 late in the fourth quarter, with the Vikings close to field goal range. Vikings quarterback Brett Favre took the snap, rolled to his right, and saw about 30 yards of open field in front of him. Even though he had injured his leg in the third quarter, all Favre had to do was lurch forward for 10 yards, fall down, and have a first-and-10 inside field goal range.
Instead, Favre reverted to what has made him a legendary hero (and sometimes a goat) many times in his Hall of Fame career. He planted his foot and threw cross-field where Tracy Porter intercepted him at the 22-yard line. At that moment, Minnesota’s fine season, Favre’s great comeback, and Vikings fans’ hope for a Super Bowl were thrown away. The Saints ran out the clock and kicked a field goal on the first possession of overtime.
What happened? In a pressure situation, with everything on the line, instead of making the high percentage play, a superstar did what felt familiar and comfortable — not what was safe.
You see the analogy coming. Quarterbacking a football team and managing a client’s portfolio are wildly different activities. It is doubtful that we will ever achieve a “Brett Favre” status within our profession. Yet, a failure on our part to “read the field” could be more devastating to a family than the shock and disappointment felt by the players, coaches, and fans after that heart-breaking loss.
It is common in our profession to tell our clients that we will be their “quarterback.” If that’s the picture we are using for them, we must remember they are the head coach and team owner.