Financial planners, investment advisors, money coaches and wealth counselors use Money Habitudes cards because they:
- Start positive, productive conversations with financial planning clients – or prospective clients. The innovative conversation starter gets clients to talk about money in an easy way and builds trust, understanding and rapport with clients.
- Act as a money personality test and help a financial planner or advisor really assess: where a client is financially, where he or she wants to go, and what his or her financial mindset is. This information isn’t typically captured on intake forms (or other client profile or client discovery tools) but comes from open conversation.
- Provide financial advisers with insight about how their own money habits and attitudes affect how they interact with clients and give advice and how satisfied clients are. Financial planners may discover that they come across as judgmental or impose their beliefs; changing this helps get new clients — and keep them.
- Are a way to get couples and families to talk about money and better understand each other. This makes it easier to find agreement and make joint financial decisions. It decreases the need for a financial adviser to be a relationship referee. (The tool is also used by financial therapists.)
- Can draw out a “silent partner” in a couple, the person who doesn’t talk about money. This counteracts a situation where either a husband or wife dominates the financial discussion and decision-making.
- Put risk tolerance in a real context. It’s easier for a financial planer to understand how clients react to risk by talking through how they see and handle money now and in the past versus, for example, simply asking what their risk comfort is on a 10-point scale.
How Money Habitudes cards are used by Financial Planners
- Icebreaker or conversation starter. A get-to-know-you activity during a first meeting, the cards are easy-to understand and non-threatening. Therefore, new clients feel comfortable talking about money; clients are engaged beyond filling out forms about assets and investments. Financial advisers can then address people’s real money issues. The activity supplements other discovery, assessment and financial due diligence tools.
- Workshops or seminars. Money Habitudes cards are a fun, insightful but low-risk way to engage with prospective clients. Financial seminars based on the money personality activity are better received than typical low-energy PowerPoint presentations or lectures and also provide a way for continuing dialogue.
- Part of a series of investing classes or presentations. The ice breaker cards typically put a friendly face on the presenter and the series, making participants more willing to attend a first class and come back for more. This includes employee benefits presentations, first-time investors, newlywed money management, retirement planning, etc.
- Giveaways. Decks of Money Habitudes are more meaningful and give people a reason to engage beyond giving out branded merchandise like mugs or pens. The financial personality cards get people thinking about their finances in a positive way while helping them engage a partner, identifying goals and conceive of next steps.
- Staff or self development. Helping financial professionals – financial planners, loan officers, investment advisers, etc. – understand how they relate to money by doing the Money Habitudes activity allows them to better relate and listen to clients.
- Breaking a logjam. Even good, longstanding clients can get stuck. It might be a client debating whether to start a business or a couple that’s hit a roadblock with estate planning. Using the cards may help break clients’ logjam and see their own situation or a partner’s with a different, clearer perspective.