Slideshow 5 Tips for Bank Advisors to Improve Relationships with Trust Officers

  • October 30 2012, 6:28pm EDT

Forming Strong Relationships with Trust Officers

In the upcoming issue of Bank Investment Consultant, we have a story from regular contributor Todd Colbeck about forming strong relationships with the trust officers at your banks. Colbeck draws from the lessons of Robert Cialdini's book Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion and adds his own tips on how to apply those lessons to the bank channel. Check out the article online or in print to get all the details, but in the meantime here's a sneak peek at the highlights.

Be Likeable But Not Fake

The "liking" technique. Quite simply, another person is apt to help if they like you. Sounds like common sense, but many of us don'f really consider the fact that someone else may not like us. It boils down to a matter of finding common ground, but this needs to be handled in a low-key way. If you overdo it, you'll come across as fake, which will be spotted in a second

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Seek Commitment and Consistency

Next is the "commitment and consistency" technique. If you can get people to give you small commitments consistently, it is easier to get bigger commitments when you ask for them in the future. Ask for information about some general area you work with once a week or so. Once you have established a consistent pattern, say 3 to 4 weeks, ask for information to help you identify new people to meet and help.

And remember, this should be in the context of looking out for the client's and the bank's best interest, not just your own.

Influence Group Behavior

The "social proof" technique. People want to blend in with the crowd, but you may be able to set the norms and influence the way the crowd will act in the first place. When you ask for a referral, discuss other people who are also giving referrals among the team. The more examples you can cite, the more internal pressure builds for the person to refer someone as well.

Referrals are a Give-and-Take

The "reciprocity" technique. A trust officer wants referrals as well, try to identify clients you have that they can help. I would go the extra mile and introduce them personally.

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Reference a Leader's Directions

The "authority" technique. From the time we are born we are conditioned to listen to parents, teachers, and people in authority. To use this technique it is easiest if you have a memo, e-mail, or some type of direction from a senior leader at the bank telling people to refer business to each other. When asking someone for a referral, make sure the person knows the reason you are asking is because this senior leader wants everyone on the team to help each other by cross referring customers.

See Beyond Your Own Interests

All these techniques must be done in the context of looking out for the client's and the bank's best interest and not just your own. And remember, you can read the whole article in the next issue of Bank Investment Consultant.