16 Mistakes That Doom Your Financial Planning Practice to Mediocrity

Research has shown the differences between mediocre businesses and outstanding businesses. The differences are shown in the following table.

Compare your business. Where do you stand? Which of these serious mistakes do you make? What changes do you need to make to have a high-performing business?

The left-hand column tells you what the mistakes are. The right-hand column tells you what to do about them.

Generate unsatisfying, ordinary results
Generate outstanding results
Look in the wrong places to solve business problems. Not fixing what is really wrong. Hire coaches skilled in identifying problems and their solutions.
Always working IN their business. Set aside time to work ON their business.
Avoid investing time and money in their businesses; distrust business coaches and teachers. Eager to invest time/money in outstanding teachers; interested in longtime high-yield; willing take risks.
Surprised and frustrated by life’s inevitable disruptions; have no reserves, contingency plans for backups. Prepared for the inevitable disruptions which occur; have contingency plans and backups.
Use free/inexpensive methods which are widely known. Try to figure out everything themselves. Use more expensive, specialized knowledge from experts. Hire coaches and consultants.
Depend on only a few referral sources and are susceptible to a collapse in their stream of new clients. Rely on many, diverse systems to get new clients which insure a steady stream of new clients.
Traditional visions for the businesses; mediocre goals for client load/revenue. Ambitious goals and create new and innovative services yielding more income.
Think that being an excellent technician is the key to successful businesses; don’t learn business skills. Know that being an excellent technician is is not enough; excellent business skills are needed.
Take personal credit for success; blame failure on external circumstances Take responsibility for results due to effective business plans.
Don’t keep up with technology; reluctant to try. Don’t grasp how businesses are permanently transformed by computers. Use the latest technology for business efficiency. Clearly understand how digital technology leverages time.
Don’t make planning at top priority and does it in spare time. (There is rarely, if ever, any spare time in a business.) Schedule planning time to provide steady business growth and track results derived from each activity.
Adopt traditionalist approaches to running their businesses; unaware of how accelerated changes in technology, culture, and society constantly impact their businesses. Welcome change and are aware that understanding and adapting to changes in our modern society will give long-range competitive results for many years.
Have small visions for their businesses. Don’t look to be especially innovative. Think big, yet realistically. Create innovative services/products.
Reactive to what’s already happened. Energy is used to correct mistakes and unanticipated problems. Proactive, anticipate events and put preventive measures in place. Make problem free zones.
Number of active clients is erratic and unpredictable. Number of active clients is steady due to marketing plan.
Believe they know enough and unwilling to ask for help. Distrust consultants, coaches and teachers. Understand that successful business people get a lot of help; invest in professional consultants.
Vague ideas for running businesses; lack focus, jump from idea to idea. Proven, effective business practices to achieve consistently high success rate.
Rely almost entirely on seeing clients personally in order to generate income. Use modern marketing systems like upsell, cross sell and backend services.
Do very little to leverage their time. Leverage time for additional income.
Worry about client loads, especially during vacations. No worries; client loads stable; incomes stable.

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