Sales Guy or Retirement Consultant?

Author: John Kelly

Regional Sales Director

Am I a sales guy? Or a retirement consultant? 

They say, “the more things change, the more they stay the same.” I couldn’t agree more.  It seems the retirement industry is always evolving.  With the most recent announcement of The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act of 2019, it’s never been clearer that Americans still need help saving for retirement.   Sorry to disappoint you, but I don’t have the easy button solution for that problem. However, I do have solutions to help you and your clients get there.

If you’ve ever worked with me, you know I often say that “99 percent of what I do is consulting and the other 1 percent is sales.”  What do I mean by that?  Our goal at Goldleaf Partners is to provide solutions, not just a product.  We help our advisors and potential clients discover how they can provide meaningful benefits to their participants. It’s about giving potential clients what they want while also educating them on what they need

But how? I believe in and adhere to a few simple principles:

Value presented is value purchased.

It’s not enough to show up at the meeting and give a brief historical overview on my company and how long we’ve been in business.  We need to understand the client, their demographics and how a plan needs to be designed to fit their objectives.  We need to be that architect.

Don’t sacrifice quality for cost.

I often run across “cost conscious” clients.  If you are currently working with a TPA who slashes pricing constantly or they always say they can handle any situation without asking questions, maybe you need to make sure they are following through. The TPA is in charge of compliance. Cost and capabilities are obvious factors, but service providers also need to be legal, efficient, and honest about their abilities.

Don’t be afraid to say no.

Prospects can ask for a lot. If what they are asking for isn’t possible, legal, or even in their best interest, it’s important to say no.  It’s my job to be the smartest person in the room within my discipline.  If I’m not, then why am I there?  Anyone can hand someone a piece of paper to sign. I need to guide, instruct, and tell prospective clients what is in their best interest.  Again, value presented is value purchased.

And my final principle for success:

Do the right thing.

I’ve seen many wholesalers sell something just to sell something.  While I understand the euphoric feeling of a closed piece of business, it’s not a good business model to take on a plan knowing it will cause problems. It’s always best to be honest and act in the best interest of the prospective client, as well as your business partners. If the proposed arrangement doesn’t make sense for all parties involved, it can create more headaches and issues down the road.

Yes, the more things change, the more they stay the same.  Just know that as the retirement plan market evolves and gets more complicated, Goldleaf will be there to help at every turn.  Our team of TPA wholesalers aren’t just here to get a signature. We are retirement consultants. 

Interested in a retirement plan consultation? Request one here, and we will contact you.