Is it Luck?

“And, believe it or not, at the end of the meeting he fortunately decided to open an account.” I had been working with this advisor for about a month when he told me of his recent success.

Obviously, I was happy to hear that he was getting a new client, but I was shocked at the way he described it to me. The implication was clear – he was very lucky to get such an individual as his client.

The words we choose to describe ourselves to clients and prospective clients are incredibly important. But so are the words that we choose to describe ourselves to ourselves.

After hearing the advisor describe himself in such a way, I told him a story about another advisor at the same firm. This advisor had also just started a relationship with a new client. He met this individual while waiting in line for the men’s restroom at a popular restaurant.

One might think that meeting a soon-to-be client in a random location can be attributed to nothing more than pure luck.

But listen to how this other advisor described the situation: “Obviously I was really pleased with how the conversation turned into a new client opportunity. But honestly? I took more satisfaction in knowing that I’d been working so hard over these last couple of months to improve the way I describe the value I bring to my clients. Even if nothing came from this particular conversation, I knew that I was ready for every future conversation that comes my way.”

In a way, he was echoing Louis Pasteur, who once said “Fortune favors the prepared mind.”

The moral of this story isn’t just “be prepared.” Pay close attention to the narrative that each advisor crafted for himself. In the first example, the advisor told himself that he had nothing to do with his success. In the second example, the advisor told himself that he had everything to do with his success.

The stories we tell ourselves have a lasting impact on the way we live our lives. What stories do you tell yourself after your successes?

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