Get Me Within Two Baskets


It was the 1987 NCAA Regional Finals. We were playing Louisiana State University, and with less than 8 minutes to go, we were down by 8 points. For the first time in Indiana’s run to the National Championship, you could feel a little doubt that we would dig ourselves out of this particular hole.

During a timeout, Coach Bob Knight didn’t make any major adjustments. He reminded the team to do what we had been working on since the beginning of the season. We just had to do it with more accuracy and precision during the final minutes at the game.

Before they left the huddle, Coach looked the players in the eye and said, “Get me within two baskets with two minutes to go, and I will win this game for us.

Now, you may think that’s an arrogant statement. I don’t. I find it confident. Spoiler alert: As you’ll read in my book, “Free Throws for Financial Professionals,” Coach delivered on his promise. You can deliver on your promises, too.

Coach Knight’s statement demonstrates the leadership that all of our clients want from us. That statement is exactly what every prospective client wants to hear from their planning: Get me to the finish line and show me how to win.

Professor William F. Sharpe indicated that retirement income planning was the hardest problem he ever worked on during his career. I would argue that it’s the most complex problem that your clients will ask you to solve for them. That’s why you need to look at it differently.

Just like Coach Knight said in that timeout, you don’t have to do a bunch of new or different things. You just have to perform with accuracy and precision. You have products and tools available to shift a multitude of risks in retirement. You just have to do the fundamentals better. And, no matter what happens, you have to look your clients in the eyes and help them win.

Winning Strategies

Craving More?

Across the country, advisors are telling us they’d love to find a steady stream of clients. Well, more than $3 trillion in pension assets are ready to move to either insurance carriers or employees in the next two decades. So, with the right approach, pension risk transfer can provide sustainable growth for any financial services firm.

Join us for a powerful webinar featuring Pension Risk Transfers in today’s financial world.

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Winning Strategy

Get your client in a position to win with tools and products that have been around for decades. Think about using them differently to maximize success.


About the Author

Mike McGlothlin is a team leader, retirement industry activist and disciple of Indiana Hoosier basketball. In addition to being EVP of retirement at Ash Brokerage, he is a sought-after writer and speaker. His web series, “Winning Strategies,” provides insight and motivation for financial advisors in many forms – blogs, books, videos, podcasts and more. His latest book, “Free Throw for Financial Professionals,” is available now – learn more at

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