Do You Know Enough About Your Clients?

Beverly FlaxingtonBeverly Flaxington is a practice management consultant. She answers questions from advisors facing human resource issues. To submit yours, email us here.

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Dear Bev,

I was a finance major undergrad and received a master’s in taxation. I have always been a very left-brain person. I sought a career in the financial industry because of my acumen with numbers. Most of the advisors in my firm are wired similarly, and we do excellent work on behalf of our clients as a result.

We are aligned with a much larger firm and recently they asked us to attend training on developing our softer side. I respect and value my clients, but I don’t think it is appropriate for me to gush about their family vacation when (1) I don’t really care, and (2) I don’t think that’s what they are paying me for.

My attitude has caused consternation with the COO of our firm, who mandated we all attend this training. She believes I am resistant to the idea we are in a helping profession, and to help people we have to know them and listen to them more effectively.