And why you don’t need to have thousands of dollars in assets to benefit.
I sat at my desk holding the phone away from my ear for what felt like the third time that day.
Another client was aggressively taking out his frustration on me.
“Your colleague told me that this portfolio would do 7% a year and I’ve only made 5%. Your firm has therefore ‘lost me 2%’ and I want to know what you are going to do about young lady”
There it was. “Young lady”. Said in precisely the tone of voice that implied that the client had little faith in my knowledge or experience. In fact I began to wonder whether me being a lady full stop was in part license for his fury.
As a financial adviser I was used to being a sounding board for frustrated clients.
But today I felt a disconnect.
I was looking at another 7 figure portfolio. More money than I could hope to earn in a lifetime and this client was complaining about only making 5%. Moreover he was absolutely irate, and condescending to boot!
This was the moment that I fell out of love with the traditional financial services model.
I took a step back to examine exactly what had helped me excel in the industry , and it was not my love of numbers, but my love of people.
Not only did I write the most business, but I genuinely felt the most fulfilled, when I knew I had made a positive impact on somebody’s life.
On the whole, I treated my clients like my friends, and I went out of my way to be available when they were at their most vulnerable.
Through illness, bereavement, divorce, redundancy.
This is what the industry needs more of I mused. It needs to treat clients like people and not commodities.
I believe that in a lot of cases financial advisers have failed their clients. Many so called advisers are little more than sales people trying to shoe horn clients into one size fits all products.
Instead of just selling to our client base we need to be coaching them as well.
The wealth coaching element focuses clients’ on their own financial education, growth and decision making ability.
It engages and draws in a younger audience, by providing guidance on how to build wealth in the first place.
Traditional financial advice is only really viable for those that have already accumulated wealth. But what about those who are struggling with debt, have little in savings or have developed poor spending habits?
Wealth coaching gives the less well off a chance to actually improve their financial situation.
A successful wealth coach will show a client how to identify any negative mindset patterns, guide them to become more savvy when managing their own money and ultimately help them become more able to make sound investment decisions.
The Millennial wealth gap is real. The female investment gap is also real.
I hope that by combining my experience as a traditional financial planner with more holistic wealth coaching method, that I can be part of a community responsible for engaging more marginalised audiences.