Life coach, accountant, investment quant, actuary, and sales negotiator. These are some of the roles that financial planners have traditionally had to assume in their work with clients. It’s no surprise that increasing regulatory pressure has resulted in many seeking to leverage technology, to redefine their business models, so they can reassert their focus on client relationships and the softer skills necessary to manage them.
The rapid growth of fintech, combined with customer experience and regulatory change has resulted in an evolution of the financial adviser role.
Data, machines and algorithms will in time outperform a lot of the calculator, research and administrative functions.
The industry is undertaking an important step towards automation. These modern advancements will see the role of an adviser evolve more-and-more toward a life coach and financial mentor, with technology supporting this adviser-client conversation.
An intuitive mindset & tech go hand in hand
To explain an intuitive mindset in the context of a financial adviser, is an adviser’s ability to work with the mindset of their clients. Clients need to have a good attitude about money if the financial advice they are provided is going to achieve successful outcomes - especially toward their life aspirations and goals.
Money mindset is a person’s beliefs and attitudes toward money, as well as past experiences they’ve had with money. These are the drivers behind the financial decisions clients make, especially when it comes to investing, saving and debt.
Navigating through a client’s healthy or unhealthy relationship with money is a fundamental aspect that financial advisers inevitably and unconsciously have to play a role in.
The intuitive mindset of an adviser should firstly identify what behaviours they need to work on with their clients and utilise the right tools and strategies to help narrow in on what needs to be a priority. Then it’s all in the coaching to help clients overcome any mindset challenges.
Working with human behaviour isn’t necessarily easy, but there are tools available to support advisers.
a.i.’s financial planning software has a Money Behaviour Profile that takes clients through a self-discovery process by asking questions in relation to their Money Values, Beliefs, Attitudes and Personality.
It’s academically accredited and designed to provide advisers with a guide on how to coach their clients from the profile findings. For example; a client’s mindset may be to self sabotage. Knowing this, helps advisers to gain a more in-depth understanding of their client, and assist the client by creating self awareness, so they can work together in making positive changes.
This is how we see human behaviour and technology coming together for the financial planning industry.
Why becoming a financial adviser in 2022 is not just about understanding finances
Financial advisory is certainly not just about numbers, there is a human psychology element. You are dealing with people’s emotions and behaviours in relation to their finances and the way they behave toward money.
The coaching approach is proving to be more meaningful to clients as they tend to remember the emotional over the practical.
The human element is the true magic of financial advice that gets lost amongst the numbers. This ‘life coaching’ style of advisory is what is making headway, helping to build strong and long lasting client relationships, demonstrating the true value of advice.
The more financial advice client experiences that incorporate human behavioural coaching and technology, the more positive advocacy the advice industry will receive in return - as it is aligned to what today’s consumer wants.
Human centred goal planning
Taking a human centric approach to financial planning means that client goals are a pivotal piece within the advice process.
Taking clients through a goals planning journey helps both advisers and clients to understand the “what” that may be driving particular investment, debt or savings decisions.
Whether a client is wanting to buy their first home so they can feel they’re providing security for their family, or that they want to retire comfortably with enough to live out their retirement goals. Working on the client’s “outcome” is where the advice process needs to start, and be dynamic as their goals change throughout different life stages. Second to this is working on the behavioural blocks that may be preventing clients from achieving those outcomes.
Goals-based advice technology has emerged to support advisers to provide a goals planning process for their clients. Not only does this planning technology help identify what is important to clients, advisers can model various approaches the client can take. Live, client-facing scenario modelling technology means you can simulate how advice strategies and trade offs can impact their future - in accordance with their goal achievability percentage.
Soon this technology will evolve by tracking a client’s goals to investment and savings strategies, making the world of financial planning more real-time and mobile app based.
This is good news for advisers as it delivers advice the way today’s consumer interacts, but it also creates significant efficiencies within the advice process, enabling advisers to focus more on client relationships and less on admin.
How do you become a financial adviser?
There’s a lot of formal education required in becoming a financial adviser. For new financial advisers, the minimum education is an approved bachelor’s degree or higher, and with recent reforms, existing advisers need to attain an approved graduate diploma. They also require a practical supervised professional year and to pass an exam set by Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA).
But what does it really take to become a financial adviser?
There are quite a number of skills and characteristics advisers need; there’s the numbers; understanding investments, economics and markets, then there’s the human aspect; empathy, communication and understanding.
But what is missing within formal education is the life coaching and human behavioural elements that advisers should have in dealing with people and their finances.
I see more and more interest on this topic, because advisers have recognised that by knowing their clients more intimately, it helps them to strengthen client relationships and deliver more value in the advice they provide.
With no formal education available on money mindset & behavioural coaching through education providers, there are some courses advisers can do, one in particular is the Money Mindset Coaching for Goals Based Advice Course.
Book a demo to test drive our financial adviser software
If you’d like to learn more about goals-based advice technology or money behaviour profiling, you can book a demo to see it live in action.