Award-winning planner's road to success

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“I had almost given up trying to find a suitable position and I was actually considering changing my career path and looking for a graduate accounting position. Fortunately, I discovered Tupicoffs and the rest is history,” he says.

He has been with that practice for around seven years, managing a portfolio of approximately 120 mainly high net worth clients. He also provides pro-bono advice to some clients who need help to overcome hardship. 

Kenny’s dedication to his profession is evident.

Along with his most recent award, he was this year’s PlanPlus global financial planning award winner for Asia. Last year he was one of Wealth Professional’s top 50 advisers and a Money Management financial planner of the year finalist. In 2011 he was the Brisbane winner of the FPA Best Practice award, and 2009 was in the top three of FPA’s Value of Advice awards.

Winning awards enhances his public profile and helps give him a level of “third party credibility”, believes Kenny.

“Choosing a financial adviser can be a daunting task for most consumers given the different options available and I believe that finding ways to differentiate your business is crucial to attract new clients.”

Moving forward, Kenny thinks financial planners will face hurdles if they do not have the required business model support and infrastructure in place. 

“With a drive towards fee-based advice and annual fee disclosure requirements, it will be particularly difficult for businesses that have historically operated with very high client-to-adviser ratios and minimal support to deliver a valuable service and satisfy client demands and expectations.”

As the industry becomes a respected profession, financial planners should be able to develop and charge appropriately for their advice. Equally, it is important clients are engaged in the planning process, confident their adviser understands and meets expectations, Kenny says.

“I think it’s important for both the adviser and the client to be discerning when deciding whether to engage each other. Developing a long-term trusting relationship should be the ultimate aim for both.

“Like any relationship, communication is key, so an open, honest and trusting relationship is fundamental to achieving results.”

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