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Let’s Talk About TRUST

by | Oct 25, 2017 | AHEAD OF THE CURVE |

“TRUST”

 

Firm belief in the reliability, truth or ability of someone or something.

Synonyms: confidence, belief, faith, certainty, assurance, honest

The profession that we work in suffers greatly from a lack of trust. There I said it! And rightly so in many cases I am sorry to report! The much-maligned commission-driven life assurance salesman is still alive and kicking.

In Ireland today, there are well over 1,000 regulated “Financial Advisers” (by some measures it’s closer to 2,500). The clear majority of these regulated advisers, sell products for a small number of Life Assurance & Pension providers. In the case of banks, they are frequently “tied” to one company.

Commissions can result in attractive rewards for the sale – sometimes as much as 200% of your premium for a life assurance product. Frequently, the commission model does not reward service so the “adviser” must move on to the next sale. The result of this structure is little or no service to the customer after the sale has been made. Is it any wonder that TRUST is lacking?

But here’s the thing. We are in the business of minding people’s money and making sure that they are protected in the event of unforeseen circumstances. To do this duty to the highest standard we must provide an ongoing service. Surely, TRUST is the single biggest issue when considering who you appoint to the privileged position of being your family’s financial guardian for the long term.

There are a handful of excellent Financial Planning firms operating in Ireland today. Note I use the phrase Financial Planning – there are differences between advisers which we will help you identify below.

They are firms like Metis Ireland who focus first and foremost on the customer. We will only offer advice that is in the clients’ best interest.

I said this at a meeting with a couple recently and the reply was, “Surely that’s a given”. Great reply! Surely, it is a given. And it is something that we live and die by here in Metis Ireland. It is why our tag line says: “HONEST Experienced Financial Planning”. I’m afraid I do not believe that every regulated financial adviser always acts in the clients’ best interests. Many simply cannot because of their business model which does not put the customer first.

Don’t get me wrong here – Metis Ireland is a successful business. The difference is that the business model is built around the customer and all interests are aligned. With this business model, you can be assured that putting your best interests first is a given.

Our clients experience this difference from the outset. We apply a relentless focus on the clients’ situation and their financial plan for the future using the latest cashflow modelling software and a team with deep expertise and experience.

Once we are all clear on the vision for the future, we then move forward. Therefore, our clients will always know why we are proposing a financial product – if we are proposing one. They will always know the fees associated with a product and the fees that Metis Ireland receives for implementing Financial Plans.

Constantly researching international best practice has led us to adopt a true Financial Planning approach. This provides a real benefit for people and distinguishes Metis Ireland in the marketplace. We create long term Financial Plans for our clients. We make sure that we implement long term Financial Plans and that we help our clients to “Stick with The Plan”.

We will ONLY recommend actions that are in your best interests. We will NEVER recommend a financial product for the sole benefit of Metis Ireland. Our reputation means everything to us and we will guard it every day we turn up to work. We have a phrase that I often use at our team meetings:

“Act with Integrity when no one is looking “

If you want to ensure that you are dealing with an expert and trusted Financial Planning Firm, you should ask some of these questions:

  • Can you create a long term financial plan for me that is updated each year?
  • Do you use the latest software to create my Financial Plan?
  • Will you outline in writing the fees and charges associated with each contract that has been recommended to me?
  • How many different Life Assurance & Pension Providers can I deal with through your firm? (run a mile if the answer is 1!)
  • Do you have an in-house investment philosophy? Can I see documentation and research?
  • How often will you update me on my portfolio?
  • Can I fire you or the Fund Manager? (Note: exit penalties make this difficult)
  • Do you have an expert team working with you?

Our mission statement reads:

Our clients will be in the best possible position to achieve their financial goals.

Our clients will have a clear Financial Road Map.

Our clients will always be served by a highly qualified team of honest and energetic professionals.

We will always act with integrity.

Metis Ireland will always be synonymous with world class financial planning.

The mission continues! The vision is to be the best Financial Planning firm in Ireland. We can only do this if we are a TRUSTED brand. Please help us and tell us what we should do to ensure that we always remain a TRUSTED Financial Planning Firm.

 

Carl Widger
Co-Founder & Director

Disclaimer

Metis Ireland Financial Planning Ltd t/a Metis Ireland is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.

All content provided in these blog posts is intended for information purposes only and should not be interpreted as financial advice. You should always engage the services of a fully qualified independent financial adviser before entering any financial contract. Metis Ireland Financial Planning Ltd t/a Metis Ireland will not be held responsible for any actions taken as a result of reading these blog posts