Life Transitions

Helping Clients Navigate Life Transitions Part II: Career Changes and Moving

by Tony DiLeonardi

In my last post, I introduced the topic of helping clients navigate life transitions.  In this post, we'll begin working our way through the seven major life transitions that people face and explore ways to not only aid your clients during these times, but also treat them as opportunities to connect. 

New Job/Unemployment

I'm going to address unemployment first since that may be a greater source of stress for clients than a new job.  The loss of a job can be very disorienting and your guidance can help them refocus on the issues that need their immediate attention. 

If the client is eligible for severance and/or benefits, find out if they are negotiable.  Be sure to review the tax implications of any payments and help them determine which investment vehicle may be most appropriate to deposit any severance into.  Also help them research health insurance options.  Whether they elect for COBRA or an individual insurance plan, their immediate attention to this matter may help them avoid making costly mistakes.

The connection opportunity here is significant and you don't need to start moonlighting as a professional recruiter to make an impact.  Simply facilitate and invite them to client networking events or offer up referrals within your network.  Once a client lands a new job, offer to review the benefit package with them.  At a time when their focus may be on simply securing a source of income, you can offer clarity on important compensation issues. Be sure to congratulate them on the new job and proactively offer help with any new 401(k) options.

New Home/Moving

On our list of "least favorite things to do," buying a new home and moving may come in only second to enduring a root canal.  This is a real opportunity to be the hero by offering guidance with the loan process and closing considerations.  Remind clients to keep moving related receipts for tax reasons and to update the appropriate insurance policies. Once the clients have settling in their new home, maintain your connection with a small gift/note of congratulations or provide them with information on services and restaurants in their new area.