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Don’t be fooled – What does being a Financial Adviser really mean? 

In answer to the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”  it’s unlikely that your answer was “a financial adviser.” Did you even know what a financial adviser is?

No one really seems to know what financial advisers do on a day-to-day basis. It’s a profession that flies under the radar – partly because of our collective reluctance as a society to talk openly about our finances. What we do know about advisers is pieced together through snippets of information we overhear in the media or from other people, which often misses the crucial elements that make financial advice so important.  

A career in financial advice is one that’s rooted in trust, long-term relationships, and the ambition to change people’s lives for the better. Yes, financial advisers are people who help others to manage their money, but don’t be fooled into thinking that’s all that they do.   

Don’t be fooled – what does being a financial adviser really mean?

Being an adviser means being an educator

In a world where people’s daily lives are so hectic and demanding, it’s almost impossible to put aside time to learn about investments and financial best practice.

There are an overwhelming number of options out there when it comes to investment funds and savings accounts. As an adviser, you’re there to provide the expertise and knowledge needed to explain these options to your clients to help them make informed financial decisions. 

Being an adviser means being a supporter

There are lots of reasons why someone might need a financial adviser – and that can include in times of need.. Often, these instances correlate with a change in financial circumstances, like marriage or the birth of a child, but also divorce or bereavement.

You may have to work alongside clients going through a difficult time in their life, ask them challenging questions and give tough advice. It’s crucial that you work sensitively and empathetically to help support them during this time – but this support can also be a lifeline for those working through difficult times 

Don’t be fooled – what does being a financial adviser really mean
Don’t be fooled – what does being a financial adviser really mean

Being an adviser means being a protector

Whether your client’s goal is to save for their child’s education, become debt-free or make an exciting investment, you need to ensure they are adequately protected. Help families become financially free and protect the future of your clients on an everyday basis.  

Being an adviser means being a friend 

Most financial advisers work with clients over their entire lives, and most create friendships throughout this journey. Long term relationships with clients deepen your professional reach and ability to work as a team towards your client’s goal.

Like a responsible friend, it’s your job to help them make the right financial choices for themselves and their family. As well as doing due diligence and being thorough in your research on their behalf, you need to be authentic and accessible – build a human relationship together.  

Being an adviser means being a life-changer

Though there is so much more to life than money, it is nonetheless a crucial resource in today’s world. Money has the power to change a life: it gives people choices. As a financial adviser, you can make a difference to someone’s life every day; help people buy back their old house, send the first member of their family to university, or pay off life-long debts.  

Being an adviser means so many things, reflecting the breadth and depth of the role. It’s far more expansive than you may first have imagined, but importantly, it’s far more accessible. You don’t have to be a financial expert to become a financial adviser.

As with professions like accountancy and law, you must take exams in order to qualify, but to become a great adviser, you need to be a range of things: personable, empathetic, ambitious, responsible, intelligent, but above all, yourself. 

This article was written by our Featured Company St. James’s Place Financial Adviser Academy.

If you’d like to connect with  St. James’s Place Financial Adviser Academy, edit your profile here and click connect with featured companies in your Career Preferences tab.

WEBINAR - St. James's Place Financial Adviser Academy: Your Questions Answered

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Live webinar with Scott Stevens, Commercial Director – 12pm Wednesday 6th March 2024.

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Find out more about the opportunities with St. James’s Place Financial Adviser Academy, check out their Featured Company Profile page. 

You can also connect with SJP by editing your profile and updating your connect with featured companies preferences to start a conversation.

For more information on the different paths to becoming an adviser, including qualifications, exams and salary information, check out the Newly-Qualified Financial Adviser Role Profile. 

You can also read real-life adviser stories in A Day in the Life of a Newly-Qualified Financial Adviser, below.

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