If these last few weeks have taught us anything, it’s that market volatility is here to stay. As clients continue to deal with the stressors and worries caused by the pandemic, they may be having trouble making sound financial decisions. Research has shown that we all suffer from behavioral biases, and we can be even more prone to behavioral mistakes during times of uncertainty.
This is where advisors can turn to lessons from behavioral science to help keep investors on track. We’ve created a guide and checklist for advisors to explore how to use these behavioral techniques in their practice.
Some investors, however, may benefit from having a resource of their own from which to learn the impact of behavioral mistakes on their finances and how to avoid them. We created a checklist you can send to your clients to help them start to incorporate behavioral techniques into their financial decisions.
6 Steps to Bias-Proofing the Decision-Making Process
Along with a brief explanation of behavioral biases, the checklist walks investors through six steps they can take in their finances right now to avoid behavioral mistakes down the line:
- Get to know your biases
- Turn down the noise
- Create speed bumps for decisions
- Reconnect with your goals
- Be your own devil’s advocate
- Thoughtfulness matters
Each of these steps helps investors slow down the decision-making process and avoid behavioral mistakes along the way.
This checklist is written for investors, so you can offer clients a resource they can peruse on their own time as well as in your virtual check-ins. This way, you can both work together to help clients thoughtfully navigate their financial decisions and empower them to use behavioral techniques on their own when they may need them the most.
Investors are facing quite a few obstacles when it comes to making thoughtful financial decisions. We can’t erase the emotions and biases that come with these unprecedented times, but behavioral techniques can help investors prevent these factors from getting in the way of their finances.
And for a closer look at our research on how advisors can better help investors reach their goals, join our Behavioral Research Circle.