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MDRT’s two year focus on growth

The Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT) is leading a rebuilding phase after the pandemic cost them a loss of members.

Tuesday, February 14th 2023, 9:45AM

by Kerry Meadows-Bonner

Taking it upon themselves to rewrite how MDRT operates in New Zealand, MDRT NZ chair Rick Willis says this drive is to give themselves the best opportunity to reach out to new and existing members here in New Zealand, but continue to show support for Australia’s MDRT in their rebuild too.

“The big drive for (Australia) and us is new memberships. There is a lot of common ground between us and a great opportunity to get closer and to better understand what we are all doing.

He says the rebuild is paramount alongside how they’ve restructured MDRT NZ.

Having recently appointed a North and South Island NZ chair- Tony Gribble and Travis Hamilton, MDRT has created two committees- one for the north and the south, consisting of two BDM’s from providers on a rotational basis.

“Principally, both committees will have consistent representation from Partners Life in the first and second six months of the committee year, because Partners Life is our principal supporter through these next two years.”

With the financial commitment of Partners Life, this gives MDRT NZ support to deliver on supporting existing members and generating new membership, alongside representation on the executive council that includes Rick Willis, Tony Gribble, Travis

Hamilton and ex NZ chair, Katrina Church, there is representation from Partners Life. Additionally, MDRT have also appointed a media liaison to take care of their social media to which Willis says is “pretty damn important”

“Our media liaison will play a really big role because we’ll be able to reach out to more people with regular updates and upcoming events which are critical for business.”

While growing memberships are a priority, MDRT has also introduced two other initiatives, the MDRT academy and MDRT global services.

The academy is a 12 month module programme designed to support potential new advisers into the industry with a focus on soft selling skills.

Willis says it's not product related, it's more about what type of language you use when engaging with clients and things you need to think about- ethnicity, how you present yourself.

“All of those soft skills make you a much better adviser and that stems from MDRT’s approach to the concept. The academy is about nurturing potential advisers with that MDRT slant.”

In addition, the global services initiative is an opportunity for those indirectly involved in sales to become involved with MDRT.

Willis says they may be an accountant or adviser who has created a financial services business and wants to understand better systems and processes.

“MDRT is out there sharing they want to be able to bring people to the party. Global services allow those types of people to become members.”

Now in full swing, the initiatives were created to support existing advisers and those new memberships with BDM’s who bring along prospective members who want to know what MDRT is about.

Willis says, it’s an informal series of networking meetings that include the north and south island chairs and seasoned members to start a dialogue about MDRT and to ask questions.

“What we are seeing from these meetings is an uplift of inquiry directly from BDM’s. Because, how else do we get in front of prospective new members? If you have a proactive BDM, then you’re going to find your memberships growing.”

Tags: MDRT

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