Value-added human connection means being more than yourself. If our last line of defense is merely being a human because the client is (Get it! We’re both human!), then the game is over. Instead, we need to imagine what a financial advisor could do to make the human connection valuable to the client in a tangible, outcome-focused way.

Advisors need to focus on developing their client’s financial emotional intelligence. Instead of merely counseling clients through big decisions, equip them with skills and knowledge that will make them more confident, progress their own financial thinking, and ultimately make them better stewards of their assets.

That means gamify progress, focus on specific skills, and have a regimented educational strategy. If the human connection is how you plan to survive the robo wave, be a value added human connection.

Many professionals will read this and already know what the biggest obstacle to this change is: training. Financial advisors in younger demographics are in short supply. The average age of an advisor today is close to 60 years old, with just 11% under the age of 35.

Relevant training will ensure our industry is moving in the right direction by creating higher standards for those that wish to play in the sandbox.

Older advisors need to be re-trained, and we need to work with our educational institutions to update curriculum. We are still training young advisors like we did twenty years ago, effectively setting them and our industry up for failure. Financial firms and financial advisory practices that do not provide the right training and tools will fail.

The firms that train and embrace our young and talented millennials will dominate. It is only a matter of time. Curriculum needs to incorporate material on financial emotional intelligence, psychology, and personal development.

As an industry, we cannot default to a position of comfort by believing that human-to-human relationships will save us from increasingly sophisticated robo advisors. Not only that, but we are ignoring a significant area in which we can provide value to our clients and help them to achieve their financial goals.

We must develop value added human connections, train our young professionals differently, and ensure clients understand how this impacts their bottom line.

This article was republished with permission from Modest Money.