I'll leave out the link to the news source to spare the embarrassment to that young financial planner who said he starting thinking of retirement planning at 16... That's not the intention of this post.
Of course he is talking his own book.
But that's not the way to sell financial planning...
I'll do something different this time. Instead of my usual poking, I'll put on my snake-oil skin back on and do something positive for you young snake-oil wannebes out there.
Financial planning is a vehicle; not a goal
When asked what you want to be when you grew up, hands up how many said you want to be financial planners? Insurance or property agents anyone?
You are in this line now for one reason and that reason only - to make lots of money!
Not entrepreneurial enough to start your own business, and studies not good enough to get yourself headhunted before you graduate, how else to make big money in double quick time?
Can you see the difference between what you want and how to get there?
Now you know why I cringe each time I hear some snake-oil sell retirement or financial planning as a goal... How newbie can you get?
Holes in our hearts
We all have holes in our hearts. That's euphemism for desires, wants, longings, cravings; etc.
Two ways to fill these holes:
a) To achieve
b) To escape
I was going to give examples but thought otherwise. You fill in the blanks yourself.
Just observe yourself, your peers, your parents, your relatives. See if you can spot who is living to achieve, who is living to escape.
Tip: Don't add value judgements; just observe.
Once you have unlocked this hole, your clients will practically "sell" themselves the products and services you are peddling.
You and I both know child insurance is the dumbest insurance out there, but once you found a person with a childhood of "lack", they will convince themselves to provide for their children what they couldn't have when they were young...
Just the other day, I read one of the potential Finance Minister to be in a neighbouring country was found out to have "bought" his Phd from a degree mill. Same for some of the CEOs from our listed companies over here. Make a wild guess what's the hole in their hearts?
Our job as snake-oil is not to sell, but help others fill the holes in their hearts.
You think how scam artists work?
Be Jedi or Sith
However, I must caution if stay in this profession long enough, there will come a day where you can't look at your own reflection in the mirror...
Most will chose to be Jedi and do the "Robin Hood" thing. Like selling ILPs (Investment linked policies) to the rich and strong, while selling to the poor and weak term life insurance policies.
If not how to make a living?
Then there are those who have no qualms selling ILPs and other inappropriate products to the poor and weak. And the blackest of these Siths even do their snake oil thing inside places of worship...
"Jesus entered the temple courts and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves."
Something for believers to think about.
What's the point of achieving your own financial freedom and then fxxx-up the end game by ending at the wrong side eternity?
Karma is a bitch!