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Win Clients: Part 2 How clients make decisions By Jan Hills In this second part of ‘Neuroscience and Winning Clients’, we will consider how the decision to work with an advisor is actually made from the perspective of the brain. One and maybe the only decision the client is making is whether they want to be in a relationship with you. For most people this is an unwelcome sentence. It doesn’t make you feel good. What you are experiencing is a threat response. This is something we will discuss more below. When a client is making this decision, there are two systems in the brain that are active. When you are speaking with them about the work to a greater or lesser degree, you are always addressing two parts of their brain, the Limbic system which includes the amygdala and the prefrontal cortex. Your goal is to make sure there is a balance between the two and that when the client comes to make a decision they are using both the systems. These are the decisions that stick! What does that mean and how is that accomplished? Mindset for Success Daniel Kahneman wrote, in “Thinking Fast and Slow”, that people have two thought systems: a fast, instinctive and emotional brain -- System 1. And, a slower, more deliberative and more logical brain -- System 2. Kahneman found that because the more cautious and analytical System 2 is lazy and tires easily, we often accept the quick and dirty assessments of the intuitive and largely unconscious System 1. “Although System 2 believes itself to be where the action is, the automatic System 1 is often where decisions are made,” he says. This system specialises in identifying and recognizing danger as well as rewards such as food, sex or social connection. This instinctive and emotional part of the brain often overpowers our rational logical decision making which is designed to make slower decisions with data and analysis; this is the part of the brain you typically address in client presentations. The Decision to Pick an Advisor is never an Entirely Rational One We like to believe that our conscious, rational mind controls the decision-making process, but Jetson, author of ‘Finding emotional freedom’, suggests that the unconscious brain is far more dominant in decision-making. “Research shows that our conscious mind — our thoughts and memories — are involved in only 1% to 9% of every decision,” he said. “The rest is unconscious.” Research by Antonio Damásio found that it is not logic that is needed for making decisions; emotion is at the heart of every decision we make. We talk about decisions that feel or seem right, and it is impossible to make decisions without emotion. Damasio found that people with damage to their emotional regions, like the amygdala, were unable to make even simple decisions. His view is that emotion 26 Submit your Articles sales and service excellence essentials presented by HR.com | 10.2014


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