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Are You a Queen Bee? Do You Have Queen Bee Clients?

In an effort to better serve your clients, you may have read articles or had clients take quizzes to help you understand their personality type.

The four common personality types or styles often referred to are driver, analytic, amiable and expressive. If you are not familiar with these terms here is some information.

Today I want to introduce you to another personality style that is not often discussed.

Queen bee

The idea for this article started with a conversation I had with one of my female advisor clients. We were discussing ideal clients and advocates, looking for common characteristics among them.

As the conversation progressed, it became clear that her favorite clients were strong women, and a few men, who are leaders among their group of friends or colleagues. I described them as “queen bees.”

Since like-minded people are drawn to one another, it’s no surprise that the advisor I was speaking with is a queen bee herself.

Delving a bit deeper into evaluating her top clients, we discovered that there is a category of clients who want to be the queen bee, but in reality are not. We labeled this group of clients “wannabe queen bees.”

As part of the process, we analyzed clients who had recently departed the practice. We found that at least a few of them were queen bees. Since the advisor is a queen bee and the clients are queen bees too, there was not enough room for both.

In an effort to retain queen bee clients, my further discussion with the advisor took us down the path to thinking about how best to interact with these queen bee clients both during meetings and when considering specialized events.

Working with queen bee clients

Here are a few ideas we uncovered during our conversation:

  • Allow these clients to be the queen bee in their realm. When you are interacting with the queen bee and her friends or colleagues, let her remain the leader, taking a step back yourself.
  • Conduct events where she is the center of attention. For example, one of this advisor’s queen bee clients is very involved in, and on the board of, an animal rescue organization. Our idea was to put together a fund raising event for the organization, handling the behind the scenes preparation, allowing the queen bee to take center stage at the event.
  • When the queen bee client comes in for his or her meeting, it is appropriate for you to take the lead as this is your area of expertise. During the meeting, allow the client to have an opportunity to share what is going on in his/her life. Queen bees seem to always have something important going on.
  • Queen bees tend not to refer other queen bees since most do not typically spend time with other queen bees. Just as in nature, each hive has only one queen bee at any given time. However, those who are referred to you from the queen are often loyal to their queen and will likely become loyal clients of the advisor, remaining with the advisor even if the queen bee is no longer a client. The advisor fills the role as queen bee as it relates to their finances, but the original queen bee maintains her top role at work or in the friendship.
  • For the wannabe queen bees, treat them as you would a true queen bee. Your gesture will be appreciated.

If you are not connecting as well as you would like with certain clients, compare your personality style with that of your clients. A stronger connection can occur just by being aware of your personality differences by making minor adjustments.

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