An object lesson in how Financial Planners and Investment Managers should work together

Tom adn Justin from 7IM

Most people who know me, know that I and my financial planning firm have an excellent relationship with Seven Investment Management. We outsource the vast majority of our investment management to them, which enable us to concentrate on what we’re good at (financial planning) and let go of what we’re not (running money day-to-day). They look after nearly £60m of our clients’ money and they have done a superb job with it, through incredibly challenging times. We and our clients love they way they work; they remove the burden of investment management, allowing our clients to get on with living.

In this superb interview by Rob Kingsbury of the excellent T4B Magazine, Tom & Justin explain how they think investment management should be done, as distinct from the client relationship. It’s an important message, and worth 16 minutes of your time, or you could read the written precis. (The link takes you to a digital magazine, where you can click the link on p8 to play the video)

The only Social Media strategy you’ll ever need

Many people will tell you that you should have a social media plan, a strategy, some KPIs to measure and clear rules to keep ahead of that nasty compliance manager. Call me a cynic, but the people usually telling you this stuff are those selling their own consultancy services.

Now if you’re a big corporate, with shareholders to please and lawyers to placate, you may well benefit from some of these things, but this is why most big companies suck at social.

For most ordinary people, and certainly for most financial advisers, you might as well forget about all that. Social is about sharing yourself, your views and your personality, so that people can get to know you before they even pick up the phone to make an appointment to see you.

Here, then, is my social media strategy.

IFP Conference 2012

IFPlogoSmallAs I write I am preparing for my second presentation at the Institute of Financial Planning’s annual conference at the Celtic Manor. For those who are interested after attending, or for those who couldn’t get to the sessions, I have a resources page here, which has the slides, video and audio files, and some useful links. Do let me know what you think, and if you were at either session, I’d love to hear your feedback, either in the comments on the resources page, or via email.

Going unplugged


I’m about to take a couple of weeks’ annual leave from work. For the first week the family and I are off to Centreparcs at Longleat. If there’s anywhere guaranteed to chill you out it’s Centreparcs. It is perfect for all the family, and my kids are now at the age when they amuse themselves all day and just come back to us when they need refuelling.

In that first week, for the first time in a long time, I’ll be totally disconnecting from the internet.

FSA, please allow us to concentrate on clients

FSA Building CroppedBelow is an article that I wrote for Money Marketing, a weekly magazine for financial professionals. The original article appears here.

I wonder what we’ll all talk about when the RDR is finally in place? I foresee seminars and branch meetings filled with awkward silences and tumbleweed drifting across the meeting room floor. Then someone will announce that all advisers will have to be qualified to level 6 by 2017, everyone will take a deep breath, and the cycle will begin again.