Finding excellence in advice

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Last year’s winner of the AFA Female Excellence in Advice Award has an inspirational message for all females in advice.

Christine Hornery said the award helped highlight the achievements of female financial planners and give them the confidence to speak out and share their stories. She has shared hers, saying that it was never in her wildest dreams to enter because she had too much doubt in her capabilities.

After winning the award, Hornery said she was “walking on a platform about 6 feet high”.

“I didn’t come back down to earth for weeks… I’ve never felt like that before.”

The key for nominees was to be themselves, she said. “Don’t try to be prescriptive, don’t try to rehearse what you think people want to hear. Just be you, because it’s you that’s going to give yourself the edge over anyone else, in being successful.”

The AFA, in conjunction with TAL Life Insurance, is now calling for nominations for the 2013 AFA Female Excellence in Advice (FEIA) Award. People have less than four weeks to nominate themselves or a colleague.

The aim of the annual award, a joint initiative by the AFA and TAL, is to acknowledge outstanding achievement by female financial planners/advisers, support the provision of financial advice to women in the community, and encourage more women to enter the financial advice profession.

TAL Life CEO Brett Clark said that he was again impressed by the calibre of the nominees received so far and encourages female advisers and their colleagues to seek the recognition and benefits that the award provides.

“Recent studies show that over 90% of women believe they need to be more involved in financial planning, but only 38% are currently using a financial planner. It’s crucial we take steps to bridge the gender gap in our industry,” he said.

AFA CEO Brad Fox said that while gender imbalance improvements have been made, greater female participation in the financial advice sector is still needed.

“Financial services would benefit from more women holding leadership positions, and more females taking up financial advice as a career. That’s why the AFA with the support of TAL launched this award in 2011 – it was to be a catalyst; to shine a light on the amazing female adviser talent in Australia; to showcase excellence; to focus attention on how females participate in financial advice and ultimately attract a greater participation level. It has gone a long way already to creating this groundswell of awareness and change.”

The 2013 winner of the AFA Female Excellence in Advice Award will be announced at the AFA National Conference on 15 October 2013, and will receive a hand crafted trophy, a special certificate and a full scholarship to complete an executive leadership course at the Macquarie School of Management (MGSM) in Sydney.

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