Do You Need to Know Everything?

micah shilanskiAdvisor Perspectives welcomes guest contributions. The views presented here do not necessarily represent those of Advisor Perspectives.

Honesty, transparency, and a simple script can strengthen client relationships and elevate your practice to new heights.

It’s natural not to know ‘all the things.’ We aren’t born with all the information in our brains. We research, we learn, we evolve. So how do you handle a client asking you a question that you simply don’t have the answer to? Do you respond with “I don’t know that,” followed by awkward silence? Or do you try to improvise? Here’s some breaking news for you: Clients don’t expect you to know everything, but they also don’t expect you to answer in a bad way.

I’ve been in this profession for as long as I can remember, and I’ve learned a thing or two. One lesson that stuck with me was that not knowing is not a wrong answer. It’s how you communicate your lack of knowledge that makes all the difference.

When I started out in my career, the meetings looked very different from what they look like now. I always say this to my team: Whatever the scenario, there will always be times when a client or prospective client asks you a question that you either don’t know the answer to or don’t know how to articulate the answer in a way to which they can relate.