Many people employ a financial planner because they want financial freedom but do not have the necessary skills to get there by themselves.
But according to Christine Hornery, director of FMS Group and last year’s winner of the AFA Female Excellence in Advice award winner, financial freedom means different things to different people.
“For some people, financial freedom might be about accumulating a certain dollar amount but for others it might simply be feeling they can keep their heads above water and move forward,” she said.
“What some people may not realise is that they don’t need to have a lot of money to start on the journey to financial freedom – just a desire to structure what they already have to achieve the best possible outcomes.”
Financial planners can help people get to where they want to be by putting in place strategies that meet their individual needs, said Hornery.
“I believe a good planner will listen to their clients and really understand that not all client needs are the same.
“They will metaphorically walk a mile in their client’s shoes and will also really believe in the advice they are giving.
“The litmus test for me personally is if I would not be prepared to follow my own advice, if I was in my client’s position, I shouldn’t expect my client to.”
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- Don’t just educate yourself, educate your clients. When markets fall, for example, we should be calling our clients more often, not avoiding them.
- Create a business model that lets you deliver great advice. In the not-too-distant past, being a good planner did not necessarily mean you had to be skilled at running a business, but going forward we have to be.
- This means implementing innovative processes, practices, technology and perhaps most importantly, people.