I have always believed that Financial Planning must follow a life-centred approach and have spoken at many conferences about the value of Life Planning. When my mentor, Mitch Anthony, asked me to speak at the global online Life 20 Summit for Financial Planners on exactly this topic, I jumped at the opportunity.
I had a new message to share, and wanted to further extend the conversation on Life Planning and how to form true connections with brave conversations. I believe that, in order to do Financial Planning properly, Planners need new skills. Planners are required to take on the role of coach and mentor – and this role involves authenticity, vulnerability, empathy, non-judgemental listening skills and the ability to inspire.
It starts with self-awareness and the commitment to invest time and energy into self-development and learning the skills and practices that are needed to connect with clients in a meaningful way.
I have teamed up with Colleen-Joy Page (InnerLifeSkills) to present an eight month online programme for fifteen Planners only. This programme is based on our combined experience in the field of coaching, personality awareness, Life Planning and Financial Planning, and provides a toolkit for a revised value proposition to clients, specifically in the Financial Planning industry.
I will be tapping into my more than 12 years’ experience and include the expert thought leadership of George Kinder and Mitch Anthony to teach the Life Planning part of the programme. The next module incorporates the work of David Krueger and participants will learn how to understand their clients’ relationship with money, the emotions that impact their financial decisions, and how to guide clients to let go of destructive habits that does not serve them.
Empathy is a core skill-set in the training, and Planners will learn how to coach their clients to navigate the emotional and financial impact of their money; how to cultivate connections with new skills including listening, empathy and courage; and how to make clients feel understood, respected and valued. This module incorporates the work of Dr Brené Brown who has spent 20 years studying courage, vulnerability, shame and empathy.
Colleen-Joy adds her expertise and will teach the unique master life coaching methods that is so necessary to guide clients through their decision making processes, overcome inner obstacles such as fear and procrastination, and visualising an inspired vision for their future. Her modules will also empower Planners to get to know themselves better through the Enneagram personality awareness tool.
I firmly believe that Planners need to change their value proposition. Especially now, as our clients are struggling to adapt to the new normal during Covid19, we simply have to do more than number crunching. We can do better.
I believe that Financial Planning done properly is to guide and mentor clients to formulate a Life Plan, supported by the Financial Plan; and for Life Planning to be truly effective, Planners need to be self-aware and equipped with coaching skills so that they feel comfortable having these brave conversations.