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What do private clients want?

In preparation to a speech I was recently writing about Wealth Management, I spent some time thinking what exactly we should be delivering to clients – ideally what should the users of our services receive? The concentrated response to that question is, in my experience, that clients really want us to help ensure their finances meet their current, future and aspirant lifestyles. They expect all of us to deliver credibility, longevity and integrity.

On the 16th May, Affinity sponsored a Jersey Finance seminar at the British Museum, where these themes repeatedly came up. Our industry is trusted with advising private clients in an increasingly complex financial and fiscal world. Operating in an environment filled with changing rules and regulations; where tax compliance is a must and governments are actively searching for more income; we have to ensure client structures are well thought through and retain relevance. In order to justify costs, Trustees must be pro-active, informed and ‘tune-in’ to the family, ensuring the wealth fits with their aspirations and aims.

Thinking of ‘tuning-in’, why and when did the investment industry decide the way of best dealing with client affairs was by selling product? Private clients, in my experience, do not care for products. They have real needs such as funding education and asset security. Clients have risk concerns, as well as lifestyle and family objectives, which we are required to understand.

I have seen sufficient positive reaction to comprehensive financial reviews, based on the clients long term needs and not those of the investment managers, to convince me that those offering this service will themselves be successful.

This is a mainstream offering for all clients of Affinity.