Convention time

You can’t turn on the TV lately and not know that the two major parties are having their conventions to nominate their candidate for president. There are plenty of speeches trying to lay out the case for why one person is better than the other.

You can breathe – I am not going to talk about Democrats and republicans right now. Instead I am going to talk about sales, in particular sales of retirement products. You see as normal people, we like to hear what we want to hear and a good sales pitch will do exactly that. If you notice in the conventions there is not a peep about anything that is a weakness. That is left for the opposing party to fill in. This is common in sales too, and too often a product is confused with a bad sales pitch.

If you say the word annuity in the wrong setting you may be dismissed as a greedy commissioned sales person with others thinking that anything you say should not be believed. Or if you suggest a reverse mortgage you may get a similar response. The point is that without a clear understanding of the products and where they should be used it is easy to dismiss them because all too often they are not sold properly or are sold to the wrong people who don’t need them.

I remember a saying that if all you have is a hammer everything looks like a nail. This is true in the investment sales world. If all a person can sell is one product then in their mind it is the perfect product for everything. In my almost 20 years of experience I have never found that product, just like I have never found the perfect investment for everyone.

The responsibility falls to the individual to have a great understanding of what you need before you get sold a product that does not do what you need. It’s actually one of the reasons I stopped selling products. I saw a huge need to educate people about the different options available separate from the sales process so they could make wise educated decisions without falling for a sales pitch.

Greed and fear are two very powerful emotions and often used in both the political world as well as sales. If you are evaluating a product and it seems too good to be true or “does everything” seek an independent second opinion before investing your life savings. Research the option in full before committing. Take classes to learn for yourself so you can make wise decisions.

As for politics, let me just say Go USA and leave it at that.


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