In earlier blogs, I talked about the Fear of Losing the Business and the Fear of Being Embarrassed. In this third and final blog, I will talk about Patrick Lencioni’s Fear of Feeling Inferior in his book, Getting Naked.
When I was dating my then-girlfriend-now-wife in college, I went to see her parents for the first time over Christmas break. As you know, it is a good idea to be on your best behavior when you are meeting your potential in-laws. It was Christmas time 2003, and things were going pretty well. I liked her parents, and they seemed to be liking me…
Well one evening when we were playing card games in the kitchen, I dismissed myself to use their guest bathroom. I didn’t realize it at the time, but this was to be a defining moment in my relationship with Amanda and her parents. After using the restroom, facing a potentially embarrassing moment and feeling quite inferior, I sheepishly whispered to Amanda that I needed a plunger.
Amanda started laughing uncontrollably, making a much larger scene than I wanted. I couldn’t believe she was betraying me and making a laughing stock out of me before her parents. My face turned four shades of red with embarrassment. What I didn’t know at the time was this same guest bathroom toilet had been the source of many issues over the years and had trouble flushing–embarrassing other guests and family members. After we all had a side-splitting time of laughter, I realized I had nothing to fear, and there was no need to put up pretenses and feel inferior to my future in-laws.
Fear of Feeling Inferior
In Patrick Lencioni’s book, he mentions a third fear–the fear of feeling inferior. To avoid feeling inferior or being irrelevant or overlooked, we often try to achieve and maintain a high level of importance in clients’ minds. At some point, we all have made the mistake of projecting an image of ourselves that is much better than our true self. Whether it is holding our breath while taking a photograph to look thinner or covering up that acne before our first date, we all have been there.
The Intelligent Investing SolutionPeople don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. Click To Tweet
The reality is clients are more interested in honesty and transparency than they are in confidence and perfection. One of our core values is truth. Intelligent Investing believes speaking the truth in love is better than making an “empty promise” the client may want to hear, but will hurt them in the long-run.
Competence is still relevant, and clients need to know that we have the knowledge and experience to help them. However, competence is not enough. My dad always said, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” Let your clients know when you don’t have the answer to their complex question. It’s ok to be transparent and let them know you’ve been in their shoes.The best way to differentiate ourselves from competition...is to be vulnerable with them. ~Lencioni Click To Tweet
Happily Ever After
Well, by God’s grace, Amanda and I have been married for 11 years now. We’ve had our embarrassing moments, but we have tried to be more vulnerable with each other. It still is a challenge, but we have grown closer through the years by letting our hair down and loving each other for who we are. I encourage you to give it a try and see what happens…you may be surprised.
Buy the Book
To continue learning more about getting naked with your clients, consider purchasing the book.