While working in the F&B industry, I found that I enjoyed providing service and interactions with people from all walks of life and from all over the world. Joining AIAFA in 2020 was a natural career progression as I could continue to be of service to others, and be able to meet and interact with new people while enjoying a competitive remuneration. Being a financial consultant allows me time flexibility as well as the ability to give back to society while ensuring I can take care of those around me.
I think the most rewarding aspect of being a financial consultant is knowing my clients are taken care of in the event of any mishaps befalling them. I vividly remember once when a client of mine got into an accident. At the hospital to check on them, I met his mum who, upon hearing that they had insurance coverage and would be taken care of, was visibly relieved and kept thanking me. It is moments like these, and knowing the positive impact I can have on others’ lives through the work that I do, that keeps me motivated to continue succeeding in my career.
A good financial consultant should be, above all else, compassionate, competent and have integrity. Without compassion, we would not be able to empathise and understand our client’s perspectives which would limit providing the correct solutions for their needs. Our advice directly impacts a person’s retirement plans and legacy, so a FC must remain competitive to ensure they provide the best solutions for every client. Lastly, as we deal with our client’s finances, integrity is the most important trait because this is a business built on trust and accountability.
Consistency is crucial for anyone considering joining financial advisory. Finding the right mentor and trusting the process and taking the leap of confidence, one needs to remain consistent and persevere through the initial months as they find the right footing to progress. One other trait I look for when recruiting is open-mindedness. This career requires one to be able to stretch their mind and think away from conventional thinking, especially since financial advisory as a career is considered a path less travelled. Keeping a broad outlook helps one fully comprehend and understand what the career is truly about. The biggest challenge when it comes to recruitment is that the majority of people do not have the confidence to step out of their comfort zones to be self-reliant and would view this role as ‘unstable’ or too ‘saturated’.
As a young adult who comes from a sandwich generation, I am able to share my own personal experiences when giving advice to the younger crowd on things like saving up for their first big-ticket purchases, such as a car or house, to being insured from a younger age when in the prime of health so the premiums are more affordable. Through proper financial planning, I can also help them ensure their kids do not fall into the sandwich generation. For my older clients in their 30s and 40s, even retirees and pre-retirees, I can share my own personal experiences they can relate to and make sure that anyone and everyone has a fair chance at retiring peacefully in their golden years and being able to achieve the goals that they have set out for themselves.