I think the future has never been brighter for Financial Planners. Here’s why I believe it’s one of the best industries in the world to be a part of right now.
1. The Path’s Already Travelled
It’s no longer a case of carving out the path for yourself. People are already doing it, so you can learn from their successes and past failures. Even if all you did was pick one or two successful firms and copy what they do, you wouldn’t be far off the mark. Obviously once you’ve mastered the core skills in running a successful financial planning business, you can then build on those skills and shape your own future.
2. You Can Earn A Great Living
Good advisers can earn £100k+ pa. Less than 1% of the population can lay claim to that! Additionally, you can build a capital value in your client bank or your business that has a saleable value in the future. If you’re earning less than £100k pa, getting to this level is relatively straightforward. The high performers in the profession are earning well above this level.
3. You Are Changing Lives
I’m not telling you anything you don’t know already here, but your clients think you are amazing. Why? Because you change their lives. Several years ago, my wife (Debbie) and I attended an event that James Harvey put on for his clients. During the evening we both circulated and clients (unprovoked) shared their stories; stories of how James had changed their lives. I enjoyed the evening, because it’s always great to be reminded of the good that advisers do. It was my Deb’s reaction that showed me how I can take this for granted. On the way home she grabbed my arm and said:
“Do you know what James has done for those people?” “Of course I do” I replied. Still clutching my arm and looking straight into my eyes she said: “I had no idea that’s what financial planners did. I didn’t know that’s what you did either. Helping advisers like that…to do that for their clients. It’s amazing!”
Her enthusiasm reminded me that we do really makes a difference. Never underestimate the value of what you do.
4. It’s A Job For Life
The government just can’t stop moving the goalposts, so you will likely have a job for life. There’s not many of those going around in the current employment market and it’s always reassuring to have a certain level of job security.
5. You Can Keep The ‘Small’ In ‘Small Business’
Running a great business, whether that be an empire or a lifestyle business, has never been easier. Today you can keep your business tiny and outsource or rent almost everything you need, from office space to technology and people. At FP Advance we made that choice a few years back. I have a Virtual Assistant (VA) who is based in the UK, but sometimes works from New York when the mood takes him. Our copywriter lives in Melbourne, Australia; we write draft copy, send it to her at the end of our work day, then we wake up the next morning and it’s done. Our marketing team, design people, technology support – they’re all outsourced freelancers. Lots of advisory businesses are doing the same thing; outsourcing jobs – for example their paraplanning. Even if they employ good in-house paraplanners, the smart ones are looking to outsource the boring parts of that job (e.g. writing reports) to allow their in-house paraplanners to focus on higher value-added technical work. This keeps the job more interesting for them and also extracts more value for the business. Great paraplanners aren’t cheap, so this makes great business sense all round.
6. You Are Master Of Your Own Ship
Running your own business means you get to do things your way and for most small business owners, this is a key driver. Most business people I know could never return to a corporate culture of being told what to do and how to do it. Even more exciting is that you get to choose your own clients (and staff). When you run your own show, you need never work with a dickhead again. What’s not to love about that?!
7. You Can Compete With The Big Boys
It’s never been easier for small firms to compete with big business. Technology has made this possible. Just look at the low cost of hardware and the incredible availability of free software. I can remember when a mobile phone was the size of two house bricks and cost $5,000 (AUD). Big businesses just keep kicking own-goals, and mistrust of larger institutions has never been higher. A huge proportion of the population favours dealing with family-owned businesses and smaller firms because they feel trustworthy and personal. In those businesses you get to talk to a real person, not a machine or an overseas call centre. So, let’s remember all of these things as we get out of bed every day. There’s no doubt that the future really is bright for financial planners and you’re part of it!