Five Steps to Become a Rainmaker
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Many financial firms have one rainmaker, meaning they rely solely on one person to bring in new business.
That’s a mistake.
Imagine the immediate loss to a firm if that person were to leave or, worse, something were to happen to them. It would be a severe threat to the firm. I emphasize this even further in my Referral SWOT Analysis™ (in the section dedicated to referral threats).
When a firm relies too heavily on one person to bring in the new business it teaches everyone else what it’s like to be fed business. The younger people in the firm, who will eventually be charged with leading the firm, will be ill-equipped in their skills of relationship development, relationship management, COI development, COI management, networking, client referrals, and general business development skills. I know how valuable you become when you can successfully bring in new business and new opportunities to the firm. So here are three steps to become a referral rainmaker!
1. Build up your social media presence
During the pandemic, people flooded to social media to stay connected to their friends and loved ones. That not only means that your prospects are there but so is your competition. Rainmakers know that they need to be in front of the prospects regularly. Social media gives you that visibility exponentially. Your posts allow you to build up the know, like and trust factor that attracts people to you. Will you actually get new clients from posting on LinkedIn? The answer is yes with a caveat. Only if you commit to the process, speak to your target, post your own material and be authentic.
2. Memorize your value
Rainmakers are very articulate when speaking about their value and the value of the firm. They know it by heart. They believe it to their core and stand with confidence behind it. Knowing your value is one thing but being able to articulate it clearly and concisely in any situation is another. Talk to the rainmaker in your firm. Find out what they say and how they say it. Then, add your own spin to it so that it sounds and feels authentic to you. Memorize it. Make it something you say often to increase your comfort and confidence.
3. Get involved in your community
Yes, we are in a pandemic. However, there are still places where you can safely social distance allowing yourself to engage with other people in your community. Rainmakers are beacons in their community. They are involved, known and respected. You can’t achieve that community status behind a desk. You need to meet people. I’ve seen rainmakers volunteering to distribute food during the pandemic, assisting to build care packages for the military and helping to get dogs adopted from shelters. Board positions are great ways to meet other influencers in the community and begin to build your reputation.
4. Schedule time for relationships
Simply being connected to a lot of people doesn’t make you a rainmaker – especially if those people don’t have enough of a relationship with you to matter. Rainmakers not only have the connections, but they have the relationships with those connections that makes all the difference. Rainmakers can call on their connections for support and those people respond. This will only happen after you’ve dedicated enough time with people to develop a relationship. That means you’ve got to make time in your schedule to spend time with people to build the relationship. Each week needs to reflect your rainmaker ambition with phone calls, zoom meetings or happy hours, socially distanced meetings, time on the golf course, etc. where you are dedicated to the task of deepening your relationships.
5. Learn what you don’t know
Perhaps some of these things feel uncomfortable to you. Maybe you’ve never had any formal training on how to develop relationships or how to network effectively or how to talk to others about referrals. If you want to become a rainmaker, now’s the time to learn. There’s no shortage of books you can read, courses you can take or coaches you can hire to help you learn and master what you don’t know. The point is to act on your desire to enhance your skillset. Rainmakers aren’t born on trees. They’ve learned these things over time from various sources. You’ve got to invest in yourself first and make decisions that are reflected in your actions.
Michelle R. Donovan is a referral/business coach, speaker and partner of Productivity Uncorked LLC, a coaching firm that specializes in helping financial advisors increase their referrals and get more done in their day. Michelle has written a Wall Street Journal Best Selling book, The 29% Solution (published in seven languages) and an Amazon Best Selling book, A Woman’s Way: Empowering Female Financial Advisors to Authentically Lead and Flourish in a Man’s World. Email Michelle at [email protected] or connect with her on LinkedIn.