Articles & Useful Tips from Jack Kinder, Garry Kinder & Bill Moore

Is Your Image Important to Your Success?
Image is important to any RFC and that goes for Kinder Brothers International. We strive to be the most professional organization in the financial service industry.  Our goals have always been the same, developing sales and sales management professionals by building confidence through competence.  We feel that image is important but being real is more important.  We see people who are more concerned about looking good than being good.  We always stress doing what is right.
How did you "build" such an impressive image?
As a consensus, we feel that we have achieved an impressive image by always doing the best work possible for our customers and clients.

One of our greatest assets is being consistent with our beliefs and principals. Not only do we teach these, but we also live by them. When we started working in the Pacific-Rim countries, many Asian Companies commented that our professional image preceded us.
What is the most important factor in your image?
The most important factor is integrity. Our definition of integrity is “Adherence to moral and ethical principals and soundness in moral character.”

Over the many years we have been working with financial professionals, we have built trusting relationships. The trusting relations begin with our professional image.
What is the most important factor in the Registered Financial Consultant's image?
We would have to say integrity. This is something that has to be developed over a period of time. Many advisors have developed successful practices from referrals of other clients. Client A develops a strong relationship with the advisor, has trust in the advisor, and believes that the advisor brought value-added service and helped solve his/her problems. Client A refers the advisor to Client B. The integrity of the advisor is transferred by “borrowed perception” from client A to Client B.

If the advisor continues to treat the new client with honesty and integrity, the building of a professional image has begun. As your recent series of articles on clowns indicated, it is important for advisors to always use the IARFC Code of Ethics as their guide.
What are prospects looking for in RFC's today?
o Are knowledgeable and competent.
o Are organized and well prepared.
o Are a source of knowledge, not just information.
o Are direct and confidential but sincere.
o Care enough to stay in touch with the client.
o Communicate about problems and offer solutions.
o Bring in specialists when appropriate.
o Are reliable, and meet deadlines and fulfill promises.
o Look out for the best interest of the client.
Can a well-established image be damaged or destroyed?
A well-established image can always be destroyed. In many instances, this is because advisors ignored the principals they lived by that earned them their favorable image. Once destroyed is will take years and years to rebuild. If an advisor does make a mistake, he or she must set a course correction, immediately.
What is your bottom-line advice about image relating to career success?
All RFC readers must remember that they are entrepreneurial business people and their image is as important to the growth of the business as is any other element. The average client who purchases your products or services will usually form his or her judgment about you through the first contact. If you lack proper manners, if you are disorganized or inefficient, it will take a lot of kindness and efficiency to overcome the first negative impression. This is true, even if you were highly referred to someone. Your image as a RFC is built around integrity and high standards and you must work on this as religiously as you would any other aspect of your business. Dr. Michael Mescon suggests, “Standards of absolutely first-class, pristine performances don’t spontaneously emerge. Standards of excellence are cultivated by first-class advisors committed to the notion that second best simply will not do.” These standards of excellence will build your image and your practice.
Are Financial Planners PR image expectations realistic?
Today, as I go around our nation, I talk with advisors about how they market themselves. Most don’t even have a basic image brochure. Some have no ideas about image building. Most have totally unrealistic ideas about image building and media expectations.

You don’t just write an article and send an article to a publication. You must study the target magazine’s editorial copy style requirement and editorial schedule, then you must first have evidence of accomplishment, indications of professional recognition, proof of a following, tear sheets of your other published work, and a professional press kit, plus at least one professional quality photo of yourself.
The Impact of Adapting to Styles
How often have you been misunderstood?
Have you missed a sale or recruit you “thought you had”?
Does conflict get in the way of building a productive team?

Knowing, understanding and adapting to behavioral styles helps you, your Managers and Agents increase productivity. To achieve success, win sales and have others follow you, it’s important to learn everything you can about people. The concept of reading and adapting to human behavioral styles has been around for thousands of years. More importantly, for decades, it has helped insurance and financial professionals sell more business, recruit qualified prospects and build collaborative teams.

Step 1: Know Yourself: Recognizing the behaviors in your communication style that drive others crazy is the best place to start. Are you so focused on business that some feel you don’t have a personal side? Perhaps you respond to emails so quickly that you don’t notice typos. Do you get so caught up in details that things just don’t seem to get done? Maybe you don’t want to upset the status quo, so you acquiesce to other’s preferences, making it look as though you “can’t take a stand”. Knowing the impact your communication style has on others allows you to control and adapt behaviors to meet the needs of those to whom you are communicating. In other words, be easy to listen to!

Step 2: Know Others: Most people have been raised to be polite. Therefore, out of courtesy people may adapt to our style, thus creating a false sense of approval in communication. Using a four-quadrant model called DiSC, we can ask just a few simple questions about the “observable” behaviors of another person. Looking at two dimensions, (You might draw a line down the middle of a page) we first ask, “Is the person fast paced, outspoken, louder and a natural teller”, or are they moderately paced, reserved, quieter and a natural asker? The next step is to see what direction their compass points, (so now draw a line across the middle of your page). If the compass points to the left, this person naturally gravitates towards tasks and can work very independently. If the compass points to the right, the person is more comfortable working in groups or a collaborative environment and is very people oriented.

The Four DiSC Styles:
“D” The model implies that someone who is fast paced, a natural teller, and comfortably tells or delegates the tasks is referred to as a D style, meaning they are very dominant, determined and direct.
“I” Someone who is fast paced, a natural teller, but more often tells things about people such as stories and jokes is what we call an ‘I’ style, because they are very influencing, inspiring and interactive. They love being part of “everything” and they do not like details.
“S” Moving to the lower half of our model, someone whose compass points toward people, but is moderately paced and a natural “asker” has an ‘S’, or “Steadiness” style. They are very steady, they like security and safety. As askers, S people will ask about you, your family and your weekend. They are not ones for risk, but they are loyal and make great team players.
“C” Lastly, if you draw a dot on the left bottom quadrant of this model, we find there is someone who is also an “asker” but they ask about tasks or details. This person has a “C” style, meaning, conscientious, careful and cautious. They ask you for the details: the process, past performance and the next logical step.

Step 3: Adapting Communications: So, what does all this mean to a manager or sales rep? People are wired differently, which means they are driven and motivated differently.

Working with the D Style: Be a little more direct and to the point, be on time and don’t take too much of their time. Show them what’s in it for them and emphasize the bottom line as a result of what you are asking them to do. They are motivated by challenge. When making a decision, give them a simple choice of “Option A” or “Option B”.

Working with the I Style: If you are working or selling to the “I” style, be prepared for small talk and look for an opportunity to transition to the business at hand without cutting them off. They like stories and pictures. They are motivated by challenge and they love public recognition when they win. In other words, they like the stage and the plaque on the wall.

Working with the S style: Emphasize how their work or decision can positively impact the people around them (unlike our D style where you emphasize the results or bottom line). Point out facts that emphasize the safety of your product, company or service and identify how you will support and service them.

Working with the C style: C’s wrote the carpenters rule: measure twice, cut once. They need lots of facts and data to move forward with you. They don’t like small talk, and they are motivated by quality. Be extremely organized in your approach: show factual past performance and give them all the research they need prior to decision making.

DiSC Myth’s: True or False: High D’s make great leaders; I’s make great Sales People; S’s make great counselors and all C’s are accountants. The answer is absolutely false. D’s will put themselves in positions of leadership; this does not mean they have the aptitude and skill to be a great leader. I’s can over talk a sale any time you let us (yes, that’s me and listening is a learned skill). S’s, can be as driven or competitive as the next person, they will just approach competition in a humble manner. C’s, while they love routine, have patience for the details; it does not guarantee they have an aptitude for numbers or problem solving. As a matter of fact, in sales, they are great fact-finders and present well-thought out solutions. In other words, our communication style does not reflect our aptitudes. It is, however, our communication style that plays an integral part of our success (no matter what role we choose), as we communicate our points, sell our ideas and most importantly, help and lead others to meet their goals. The human law of reciprocity says when we help others meet their goals, then others want to help us succeed. And this, “simply said”, is the essence of success!

Mary Anne Wihbey is the owner of Peak Performance Solutions®. She was an MDRT Producer for her ten years in the field. Since 1991 she has been moving individuals to action through her training and consulting. or 214-613-1767
The Lucky Coins - It's All About Marketing
The issue I started in the life insurance business in Nashville, TN in 1977. My manager, B.J. Harris, gave me some good advice I still use today.

“Learn to use the One Card System; look at the sales systems of two brothers in Dallas, named Jack and Garry Kinder; and, finally, “to be successful in this business you must be unique. People buy what is unique, not what is the same.” He went on to say, “Most insurance people look and act the same.” Good advice for a new agent.

I used the One Card System and had an OCS coach, in Dallas. While in Dallas, I attended a seminar and learned from Jack and Garry Kinder and another individual. His name was Charlie Flowers from Longview, Texas. Charlie had a successful practice in North Texas because he was unique in that market. Charlie gave all of his clients, prospects and friends a small, colorful butterfly that he pinned on everyone’s lapel. Charlie was unique. No one else did this and many people came to know Charlie Flowers through his butterflies. I remember his saying “never crush anyone’s butterfly.”

The Coins

My grandfather always carried a U.S. silver dollar dated the year of his birth, which he referred to as his “good luck coin.” Most other change went into a large jar full of coins. The good luck coin went into his pocket.

In my effort to become a successful life insurance agent, I looked for a way to market my practice and myself.

Why not give everyone a good luck coin to remember me and that I was in the life insurance business, giving people dollars when they needed them? I started giving an Eisenhower silver dollar along with my business card. This soon gave way to the Susan B. Anthony dollar. I placed my “Good Luck Anthony Dollar” in a small plastic case along with my business card. Susan B. Anthony was a great choice because she helped woman win the right to vote, but also her father, Daniel Anthony, was an agent for New York Life. At that time, life insurance companies would not sell life insurance to women and, if they did, the premiums were five times higher than for men. In 1894, Susan B. Anthony acquired a Cash Value Life Insurance policy from New York Life Insurance Company. She was New York Life’s first woman policyholder. The word “Cash Value” is important because, in 1900, she assigned her policy to the University of Rochester to allow women to attend the all male university.

In 2000, the “gold coin” (the Sacagawea dollar) appeared and became one of the coins I used with my business card. Sacagawea and her son, Jean Baptiste, have become a favorite. Although the gold coin will tarnish, a little brass cleaner springs it back to brilliance.

How Used

I started using the lucky coins with my business cards when I would prospect. At a social function I might run into someone who would ask what I did for a living. My commercial is “I help people like yourself accumulate wealth and reduce taxes.” Usually the next question was, “How do you do that? If you will me give the courtesy of 15 minutes of your time, I will share that with you. Let me give you one of my business cards. I am also going to give you a “Good Luck Coin.” You cannot spend it; you must carry it for good luck only.” Very seldom did someone not take the time to give me an appointment. How many life insurance agents would spend a U.S. one dollar coin for a good lead?

When I became a sales manager, I used the “lucky coin/business card” the same way. Instead of marketing to personal prospects, I started looking for potential agents. It works the same.

Current Use

After a successful period as an agency manager, I retired in 1997 and started consulting. I market the “lucky coins/business cards” to the people I train. Today it is more of a promotion to thank the many people who are in our business. I give them away all over the world telling them the same thing: “You can’t spend it; you must keep it for good luck.” Most people keep the lucky coin and business card in the small plastic envelope.

I also give them to others who help me in my travels. Last year I stayed at Intercontinental Hotel in Singapore. The bellman was very helpful during my stay and I gave him a lucky coin and said thank you. Recently I returned to that hotel and when I walked in, the bellman reached into his pocket and pulled out the lucky coin. “Mr. Moore, I still have your lucky coin.” A large hotel has a lot of guests and to be remembered is quite unique.

The lucky coin has worked for me.

Bill Moore 2010