It is pretty accepted that our practices are best grown through referrals, and that beyond our clients it is important to cultivate centers of influence (COI’s) such as CPA’s and estate attorneys. After having been exposed to a wide variety of coaches (Bill Cates, Rainmaker, Strategic Coach, CEG, etc.), I have found no easy answers. One of the biggest obstacles is competition. From what I have seen, most COI’s are heavily prospected to the point of being desensitized, unreceptive and often jaded. Virtually all have their guard up when approached.
Another challenge is that, for any referring source, their best hope is to breakeven, i.e. that I meet the expectations they have set. And perhaps if they have had bad prior experience they fear something less will occur, which could cause them embarrassment and perhaps even impair their client relationship. So I have to ask myself, “Why in the world would a COI choose to refer me instead of another advisor?
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