(editor's note: I attended Ed Slott's"IRA Leadership Training " in Las V egas on January 16. Sponsored by Broker's International and Robert James and Associates.)
by Tammy de Leeuw
Financial Advisor Netzone
Here are just a few of the reasons Ed Slott, CPA has catapulted to a leadership position in the IRA distribution field, becoming arguably the #1 expert in America. If you are serious about helping your clients during the distribution phases of their lives and you have not seen Ed in action- you NEED to do so.
Slott is now poised to position himself at the forefront of the CONSUMER market with an upcoming PBS special which is likely to be only the first of many. Advisors trained by Ed Slott will enjoy a credibility and visibility they can get by no other means as consumers everywhere
start to recognize the value of having a distribution expert on their team.
Five Habits that Help Slott Rock!
1. Ed Slott knows how to speak. At first blush, this seems pretty basic. But great speakers are
MADE not BORN. Sure, some natural ability helps, but learning to make your subject
matter come alive is a skill born of lots of practice and training.
Speaking expert TJ WALKER tells the story of Martin Luther King, Jr., a young man who
had a C average in speaking in seminary.
"Imagine a young man in Seminary planning a career in the ministry. He does well in most classes, earning A’s and B’s. But then he gets a C in public speaking class.
Oh no! What does this mean? Perhaps he should plan a career as an academic or run a non-profit church-funded relief program. But with such mediocre speaking skills as a full-fledged adult in his 20’s, being a primary pastor and having to give a sermon in front of a crowd each Sunday morning didn’t seem like an ideal career move for the C-level speaking student.
Fortunately the young man didn’t have any modern career coaches whispering in his ear. So he became a minister of a church anyway. His name? Martin Luther King Jr.
According to the June 21, 2006 New York Times, King’s report card and all of his other documents are being auctioned off at the Sotheby’s auction house. While the C on the report card in public speaking is amusing, what is far more interesting is the sheer quantity of notes King wrote during his brief life.
Selby Kiffer, a senior specialist in the Sotheby’s book department told the Times, “No piece of paper was safe (from King writing notes)…We have this image of a great extemporaneous speaker, but it’s something he really worked at.”
A part of the auction will include typed drafts of King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, including numerous revisions he hand wrote on the back. King’s 1964 Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech is also on the auction block. On that speech draft you will also find numerous notes, scribblings, and revisions.
So the lesson of King’s genius has been uncovered. It wasn’t genetics, it was luck, and it wasn’t innate ability.
Why did he succeed as a speaker? Because of pure, hard work."
Listening to Ed Slott, you know just how hard he has worked to achieve his speaking skills, brilliantly and effectively employing devices such as storytelling, case studies, and a liberal dose of pathos and humor. As humor consultant Malcolm Kushner reminds us, knowing how to use humor is a valuable leadership skill.
do, he "followed his bliss." When you find your niche and devote yourself to it, you stop
being spread too thin, you find a joy in what you do, and you are able to communicate
an energy and enthusiasm which resonates with your audience. If you are burned out,
the audience will burn out with you.
There simply aren't many people who can manage to make tax and distribution rules and
IRS cases humorous, entertaining, and almost fun. Ed can and does and it is because he
LOVES what he does.
3. Slott knows the benefit of what I call "giving value before the fact." He isn't interested
in keeping all his insider knowledge to himself, but freely shares it in the hopes of making
better advisors and getting LIFETIME clients.
During training sessions, Slott urges advisors to develop symbiotic, and ultimately
profitable relationships with other professionals.
"You can't help everyone who comes into your office, so don't be afraid to send those clients
to other professionals who can do a better job than you can," he says.
4. Ed sees the value of delegating responsibility to competent staff. There are some aspects
of his business about which he admits he knows nothing. He doesn't try to micromanage or
constantly override decisions made by his staff. Instead, he focuses on what he does best-
5. Ed Slott never stops learning and growing. For example, he has digested tons and tons
of marketing and sales advice and has filtered out what works for him.
He has mastered the art of what author Steven Van Yoder calls "becoming slightly famous"
to the point where people line up to get his autograph and he is courted by the media. Most
of his workshops sell out quickly without much effort his part.
But Ed Slott does not feel he has "arrived" and cannot possibly know anymore. His staff told
me that when he is not on on the road, he devotes hours to reading case law, rulings, and
other distribution information. He is as concerned about professional development now as
he was when he first started- and it shows.
Again, and I am getting no compensation for telling you this, if you are at all interested in capturing some of the coming distribution windfall, if you want to be the IRA expert in your area, if you are genuinely passionate about helping your clients save their hard-earned money from
"Governmentzilla", then you need this training. Consider investing in yourself and becoming an