I was working with some clients where English was the second language. They were from Greece, and they’d moved to the U.K. not long ago. Although their command of the English language was OK, they were clearly very uncomfortable when I was introduced to them by the lawyer speaking English. We got through the meeting, and I wrote my meeting summary report afterward. I write these reports after every occasion I meet a new client, and it includes a summary of everything we’ve discussed: the information they’ve given me, the objectives we’ve discussed and then some things for them to think about that I call outline observations. When I completed this summary, I had it translated at my cost. So, the letter was sent to them in Greek. While we weren’t going to continue the relationship speaking Greek, that relationship was born of a desire to just go that extra yard.
When somebody’s feeling vulnerable, we have to think outside the box a little bit and say to ourselves, What makes this person feel a little bit more comfortable? Because with great respect to every brilliantly qualified advisor out there, it is not academia. It’s not knowledge, experience, the product you sell or the price you sell it at that will win you a new client in those circumstances — it’s that care and attention, the feeling that you are putting your arms around them and saying, “OK, let’s work through this together.”
Alessandro M. Forte, FCII, FPFS, is a 25-year MDRT member from London, England, U.K. Hear more in the MDRT Podcast: