How to Politely Turn Down Clients that Do Not Fit Your Ideal Profile


As a financial advisor, your client base is critical to your individual success and that of your financial advising firm. The more clients you can bring on, the more fees you will be able to collect and the more people you can help achieve a successful retirement. However, taking on clients just to add to your client roll is never a good idea. You need to have a process for determining which clients are an ideal fit, and how to politely decline those who do not fit those parameters.

With a proper means of saying “no thank you” to prospective clients that do not fit your mold, you will be able to save time and energy on clients that can become potential problems in the future. This is often easier said than done, so here is some helpful information on saying “no” to those clients that are not a good fit.


It Falls Outside Your Expertise

Investopedia notes that one of the biggest mistakes financial advisors make, especially early on, is taking on anyone and everyone as a client. Scarcity of clients should never be a motivating factor to find new clients. When you are simply taking on clients to have a higher number of clients, you run the risk of taking on bad clients.

One of the best things you can tell a potential client in rejection is that their needs do not match your skill set. You can advise them to look for someone with experience in a particular financial strategy, and then offer them some helpful referrals on financial advisors.


You Do Not Have the Resources

No two financial advisors, or advising firms, are exactly the same. Some individuals might work for larger firms, and independent representatives of a brand might not have the resources to assist clients with higher wealth and/or more intricate demands in their financial investing.


For these clients, it is best to inform them that you simply do not have the resources to help deliver the financial goals they have in mind. You can soften the blow by offering to help them with certain services that would fit their needs, and consider referring them to another financial advisor for those services you cannot provide.


My Client Load is Currently Full

This should come across as a simple reason, but telling your potential clients that you do not have time for them at the moment is a strong reason for turning down work. If you cannot devote the proper amount of time and attention to your clients, it is their finances, along with your reputation, that will suffer in the end. Again, recommend some other financial advisors with room for new clients.

If nothing else, Investopedia notes that financial advisors with a client load that is too full do not take enough time off for themselves. This can result in unhealthy lifestyles, and studies have shown a direct correlation between your health and wellbeing, and your performance on the job.


Your Skills are not a Good Match

You can begin by asking a potential client what their financial goals are, and once they answer, you may find very quickly that their desires for their financial future do not match your skill set. By highlighting your areas of expertise in financial advising and contrasting them with the goals of the client, you can point out clearly and reasonably to them that the two just do not matchup. Once again, you can ease the drop for your client by recommending some advisors you know who would provide a better match in this area.

In the end, take careful consideration before you say no to a client. You will want to be sure that you truly do not want the individual in question as a client. Although it is difficult to say no, being clear and concise with a client about why you are saying no provides them with honest communication that will be appreciated in the end. For more information, please contact Trust Performance Coaching.

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