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By David RichmanNational Director, Eaton Vance Advisor Institute

Years ago, a study, which is often referenced yet never sourced, analyzed local news shows across the country and discovered that the ratio between negative and positive stories was 17:1. No matter your news sources these days, it's easy to imagine such a study done today might yield an even sadder result.

The question for you is: What can you do about it? Our answer: Plenty! There has never been a time in our history where we need to be "sources of strength" for our clients than right now.

Years ago, I was introduced to a quote attributed to Mary Lou Casey: "What most people really need is a good listening to."

This is at the core of being a Charismatic Advisor®. Your success should be anchored in our first dynamic of "Chasing Positivity®" — communicating empathically. Can you leave yourself behind and seek to deeply understand what your clients are thinking and experiencing?

Bottom line: Your clients need your interest and empathic communication skills. Lead with genuine concern and curiosity. This is no time for superficial conversations. Go deeper.