How long have you been working as an adviser, and how did you get into the role?
I started out as an adviser in 2008 with Countrywide. I had previously worked as an estate agent for five years with a national firm and then a smaller independent agency. At this point I started to become interested in the mortgage side of things, especially following the purchase of my first property. From there, I have looked to continue with my personal development in to other areas with the intention being able to offer a wider range of financial planning services to my clients.
What inspired you to join Openwork?
I was looking to establish my own firm and spoke to a few networks. From my meetings with Openwork, it was evident there was a strong infrastructure in place to help me and my business develop and grow.
A particular draw was the training schemes, such as the Academy, which I felt would help me personally, as well as helping new recruits to my business gain their own qualifications. It is also good that although the network is open to both financial or mortgage only practices, both are given equal attention and supervision. Offering support for both services allows us to expand our proposition in to wealth management once we are qualified.
How would you describe your experience with Openwork so far?
Very positive. Openwork runs lots of events to help keep us up to date on market and system changes, as well as regular contact from business development managers. There are lots of subject-specific events which have proved very useful in helping us enhance our skills in different areas.
I have also participated in the “Route to Wealth” scheme, a supported method of obtaining my diploma, which has been a well-run, informative and rewarding way to develop my own personal knowledge and qualifications, and is also beneficial for my firm.
What do you enjoy most about what you do?
Meeting my clients, whether they be new or existing. Although I am “working”, my job often involves spending time speaking to people and hearing about their own personal experiences and interests. I also enjoy seeing my clients’ journeys; beginning with them buying their first home, to starting a family and moving up the property ladder, for example.
How do you describe your job to your family and friends?
I tell my son (who is five years-old) that I go and see other families to help them buy a nice home for themselves so that they can be happy together.
What surprises people about what you do?
The range of hours I offer and the fact that I visit people at home. I feel that being flexible with regards to when and where I see people makes the process a lot simpler and less daunting, whilst hopefully giving my clients a more satisfactory experience.
What ‘powers’ you through the day?
Although I do need a coffee to help get me going in the office first thing, I feel that looking to get all of my tasks completed within the timescales I have promised my clients keeps me going.
I like to ensure that if I have committed to a deadline, I keep to my word and meet my clients’ expectations. I also have a bit of a sweet tooth so I usually need a naughty treat in an afternoon to keep me going