Thinking Outside the ‘Malebox’ to Attract the Female Investor
by Tony DiLeonardi
For female advisors reading this post, please bear with me as
much of what I'm going to say may be first-hand knowledge for
you. However, I've witnessed (and yes, even committed) too
many missteps to take the topic lightly. So I'll continue exploring
the subject and move on to offering actionable ideas that may be
incorporated into your plan.
After considerable effort at analyzing your service niche and
local client market to establish the ideal female client for your
practice, appropriately attracting female investors requires
rethinking the approach that has dominated the industry's
male-focused practices. This is where I emphasize the importance of
builiding an intimate connection, but specifically emotionallly
connecting with women which requires a different approach than with
your male clients.
Through discussions with your peers and aligning with trained
professionals, I've learned that most men and women connect
differently. Men's relationships tend to be task-focused and
independent, frequently centered around an activity or event.
Their communications tend to be competitive in nature and rarely
focused on creating personal bonds. In contrast, women are
generally relationship focused and cooperative, connecting by
talking and sharing personal stories. As they interact, they
work to stay on an equal plane.
Now you may say "Yeah, I've read it all before and get it, men and
women are different." However, my question to you is how
you've applied the knowledge to your business practice?
Do you continue to host the same presentation and discussion
sessions, striving to cement relationships through competitive golf
outings and sporting events? If so, you may be losing female
client prospects faster than you can get a beverage during the
seventh inning stretch.
Women tend to appreciate a communicative and consultative approach
that includes cooperative dialogue about reaching their
goals. That being said, it's important we highlight both
equal value and normal variety across genders. A competitive
or cooperative relationship style is not better or worse, it's just
different. We also need to remember that not every man and
every woman fits the general tendency.
There are men who are highly cooperative and relationship focused
and women who are not. People have the unique ability to
adapt. For those readers who relate instinctively, this is an
opportunity to increase flexibility. You will become more
effective if you understand your own natural style and learn to
match a female client's preference.