There is an old saying I like, and use often with my consultants here at the Rummage Group.

“Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do.” Pretty simple, but very true to life. Why is this so? Why wouldn’t anyone be willing to do what it takes to become more successful? Even the answer is pretty simple. Most people are haunted by three ghosts: lack of drive, laziness and poor time management. The big question that needs to be asked is which ones do you suffer from?

Rising stars and top producers excel in all three of these areas. They are constantly thinking about their future and are driven to hit the goals they have set for themselves. Laziness is not even in their vocabulary and they can’t wait to wake up and start conquering the world. Time management is the only area where I sometimes see advisers I consider to be rising stars in the industry get challenged, but they usually determine they have a problem and quickly make the required changes.

Bank programs have changed a lot over the years. The biggest change is the traffic within the branches. Clients now do online banking and seldom have to go into the branches. The days where an adviser could sit back and wait for a banker to set up a meeting are getting scarce. Rising stars have learned to adapt because of their drive and time management skills. They do the things the others are not willing to do. They get the job done when the rest have a “woe is me” attitude.

Here are 10 things all advisers could start doing immediately to become a rising star.

1. Tap your manager for help. Have him or her introduce you to more banking partners.

2. Get to know all bank partners, build relationships and earn their respect and trust. If your banking partners don’t like you, they won’t send you referrals.

3. Start calling customers. Have your manager print a list of maturing CDs, large deposits, large balance accounts and so on. Call 10 every day and hold yourself accountable.

4. Look for money in motion. Home sales, business sales, etc. Befriend all tellers at your branches – they are a great source.

5. Call existing clients at least twice per year to provide an update. During this call you may discover more assets or a referral.

6. Ask every banking partner (including tellers) to make a list of all the clients they know with a moderate to high net worth or income. Make joint calls on these customers

7. Give to get. Take your banking partners to lunch or dinner. Get to know them and learn what you can do to help them. Make it about them, not you.

8. Hold a seminar and involve you banking partners. Make sure it’s interesting to the customers.

9. Hold a client appreciation event. Invite your best clients and have them bring a friend. You can also open this up to your banking partners and their clients.

10. Get to know as many bank executives as possible – they have great referrals too.

To be sure, there is nothing on this list that is earth-shattering. However, most unsuccessful advisers fail to do any of these. It is still early in the year and there is no time like the present. Print this list and start making these changes now. Some of these tips will require more time to see results, but others will become rewarding immediately.

Consider this: I talk to managers every day who walk away from hiring strong producers if they feel they won’t bring enough of their books from the previous firm. However, at these same banks, only 5% of their clients even have a brokerage relationship. This presents the biggest opportunity for advisers. If advisers focus on getting in front of more prospects, good things will happen.

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