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January 2013


By Mathieu Jones, Associate Manager, Sun Life Financial
Marketing & Communications Director - GAMA International Canada

With 2012 officially over and our energy rejuvenated from (hopefully) a safe and fun holiday season, we can now focus on what we can do to make 2013 better than 2012. It doesn't matter what happened last year, whether it was an incredible year or a year to forget. This is a new year, with new goals and new ambitions. I want to focus on the inspirational side of my take-away points from 2012, and in doing so hopefully introduce some ideas that may have a positive impact on your day-to-day in the world of financial services.

One quote that stands out to me about how we think as leaders within an organization is this: “Your advisors/agents/representatives don’t think or talk about you nearly as much as you think or talk about them…” When we are putting our plans together and discussing our advisors, the reality of the situation is that they are not doing the same thing, nor should they. They run their own practice and see us as support, not as direct influence. One of the approaches that came from this was to make more of an effort to touch base with every advisor weekly, hoping to be involved in their thought process when that extra little piece of production is required.

Another very powerful statement that came through to me last year was the ability to ask tough questions. As I read through some newsletters written by our members, this was a very dominant topic — the idea of not being afraid to ask tough questions. It became more real when I looked a little deeper. This is not a new idea, nor is any idea in our business. We simply make old ideas or concepts better and more contemporary as time passes. With that said, the idea of not being afraid to ask the tough questions becomes more effective when you have the courage to ask the tough questions first and move on from there.

I have found since introducing this concept that our advisors have an understanding that when we meet, it’s going to be productive and proactive. Since this was introduced, I have found that the tough questions have become easier for me to ask. The reason for this is not because I have more practice but because that question rarely needs to be asked now. The situation that may have needed my attention in the past is more often handled prior to any need for discussion.

As you can tell, I am definitely talking in the intangible column of production for this article. A new year is a really good time for this, as most people have their production targets in place, and now is the best time to focus on the how, with what and most importantly why are we going to make these targets come to life.

For this last concept — and again where its origin is I have no idea but my mentor said this to me and it has resonated with astounding resolve — “Live and work on purpose.” As I write this, I know many of you will read this and say this is no secret. Of course it isn’t! We should all be working with a purpose. I want you to read closer and think deeper. It says “Live and work on purpose.” Having a purpose is absolutely necessary. Most people define purpose as the written plan to do what you need to do for that day, week, month or year — or worse than that, they fall back on their laurels. The reality behind the concept is this: If you don’t have a daily action plan and all of the reasons why those plans are important to you, you are not living on purpose. Choose to do whatever it is you want or need to do because it’s your passion and because you want to. Live and work on purpose not because you know you need to but because you truly want to!

Hopefully I haven’t taken too much of your time. This is a perfect time to focus solely on the positives and move hard in the direction you want to move.

Are you interested in volunteering for GAMA International Canada?
If so, email cciotola@advocis.ca

Upcoming Events

January 16Best Practice Teleconference - click here for more information
March 10 - 13LAMP 2013 - register today

Contact information for GAMA International Canada
390 Queens Quay West, Suite 209 • Toronto, ON • M5V 3A2
Tel: 416.444.5251 • Toll Free: 1.800.563.5822 • Email: info@gamacanada.com