Thought leadership key to building trust


By Daniel Paperny

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Advisers have a responsibility to embrace digital channels of engagement and open up about the difference they can make to clients’ lives, according to No More Practice.

In an interview with financialobserver, No More Practice group chief executive Vanessa Stoykov said building trust and overcoming the barrier of accessibility to advice for Australians meant showcasing the good work of advisers in the profession through thought leadership.

She said that advisers needed to pay greater attention to what channels they wanted to be on and what conversations they wanted to have if they were serious about building scale and driving engagement with modern audiences.

“When you think about the day-to-day work, advisers are thinking about doing SOAs [statements of advice], looking at compliance, trying to keep up with standards, there’s so much pressure on them,” Stoykov said.

“But if they don’t have that dialogue of ‘one to many’, they’re never going to scale, they’re never going to carve out a position for themselves and won’t ever be able to change the status quo, so it’s something that’s critical to [their] business [as an adviser].

“Fear is the status quo, it’s what gets people reading the news and advisers need to be able to [change] and be prepared to share their good news stories.”

Stoykov added that by taking ownership of their engagement channels and using them to elevate their work, advisers could encourage more Australians to seek advice, as there needed to be a greater focus on the everyday value that they were giving to clients.

“At our heart, we’re storytellers, and advisers need to be good storytellers in their field because they need to tell their story,” Stoykov said.

“It’s not about bragging about what they’ve done, it’s about demonstrating the value they’ve added and the difference it’s made to their clients’ lives.”

Stoykov welcomed the incoming professional educational standards for advisers, saying it was a clear indication that the advice industry “was on the mend”.

However, she said, lifting the integrity of the sector required more collaboration between both industry bodies and participants to help instil greater trust.

“Momentum is everything. If you can build momentum and keep it going then people will be swept up in it and the advice industry needs to build momentum around the value it can add,” she said.

“We want to be part of that momentum. I think it [advice] can add a lot but the industry needs to want to be a part of that too.”

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