12 things to look for when choosing an IFA

What we all want is real results and lasting change, transforming any area of our lives today. But, we can’t all have or even afford Tony Robbins as our coach and mentor. So what might you look for in a financial adviser, that’s going to deliver the next best thing for us. How do we get one-on-one with someone who’s going to take us on our journey to financial freedom?

Well here’s my starter for 10, or should I say 12! Here are my top 12 things to look for when it comes to finding a coach to your life and money mastery.

  1. They know their subject. You want your partner (in unleashing your power within) to not only know more than you do, but to be a recognised and undisputable leader in their field. Someone who couldn’t have possible achieved what they’ve done, without being a master of life and money. The first place to find their CV might be LinkedIn. So step one, check their LinkedIn profile for evidence of money mastery.
  2. Total credibility. What has your coach personally achieved in their field? Have other money experts endorsed their expertise, do other money experts consider them to be an expert in their field? So you might for example see if industry experts have appointed your target money expert as a Chair person of a major industry body representing other firms or experts. Has your coach chaired an industry body? What do other experts say about their credentials?
  3. They’re on your side. There are many industry professionals out there who are in it for themselves. Looking to grow their personal wealth, achieve record sales and quickly. What you want in your coach is someone who’s looking to deliver this to you. What evidence can you see from their career profile that they would put the interests of their clients first? Not only are they outspoken as a consumer champion, they are willing to make personal sacrifices on a grand scale in order to protect their values and beliefs systems. They put the consumer first, knowing that a win for their client will be a win financially for themselves in the long-term. How many advisers would put their own personal financial wellbeing at stake in order to do the right thing by their clients? Often you find on a CV someone leaving a large institution to set up on their own, because they wanted to do the right thing by their clients; did they walk or were they pushed, walking is clear evidence that they are on your side.
  4. They’re qualified to the hilt. Yes you’d expect your coach to have all the relevant professional qualifications, such as Chartered, Certified or Registered. When did they achieve it? When they were forced to by regulations? Or, at their earliest possible opportunity in their career knowing that knowledge is the bedrock to a successful career. And, how well did they do in their exams? For example, did your adviser receive prizes for the best performance in their region from the local and regional institutes. And, did they receive prizes throughout their studies, say at Associateship and Fellowship levels? One last point, have they kept their knowledge up-to-date by taking the exams again recently, just to be up-to-date and for no other reason?
  5. They are #1 in their field. How many market #1s can you count? Have they taken some service to becoming the market leader? How many times have they done this, repeat success is evidence that they know what it takes and they have the knowledge and skills to make something, not just great but, the best in its field. And, that this process has been nailed, so that success is repeatable.
  6. They have already helped many people. Has what they have done helped many people already? Have they helped hundreds, thousands or millions of people? People who have a track record of helping many millions of people, say, surely would be a great partner for you on your journey to money and life mastery.
  7. Is endorsed by celebrities. It’s always useful to know that others with a reputation to uphold would stake their reputation by endorsing your target adviser. The better the celebrity of the celebrity, the better! Celebrities from the industry make the best endorsers, as they sure do know what they are talking about. See what celebs are saying about your potential personal coach and mentor.
  8. Makes a positive difference for their clients. What do their clients testimonials tell you? Is the process about the client, and delivering them the outcomes they want to achieve in life? Or is the proposition all about the products? Websites are a dead give-away. Does the adviser plan the client before they plan the money? Or, does your adviser treat the money as the client, rather than the customer? Many advisers just bang on about products, completely ignoring outcomes for clients. The question you need to ask yourself is, am I going to see real results, delivering lasting change, that transforms any area of my life today? Or, am I going to be sold yet another product?
  9. Has made a positive difference in the world. Has your target adviser already left a lasting legacy that future generations would thank them for? What have they done for their industry? Have they transformed the market by being the first to deliver a great service that everyone finds very useful today? Have they repeated this process? Have they shifted a part of the industry, or the whole industry? How many times? Are they a true pioneer? “By their fruits ye shall know them … “ so to speak. Have they been recognised for their achievements, do they hold awards, in their country and internationally?
  10. They offer the best planning applications. When you are working with your adviser you are making an investment of the most precious commodity of all, your time. What you don’t want is a poor experience due to the advisers process or the software used. You want to know that the applications used are market leading. You want to know that these apps have recently been ranked as number one, not by the trade media who might have a vested interest in endorsing a product or service, but by a national public publication, as their number one favourite application for the public. An endorsement for the public by representatives of the public.
  11. Do they offer the world’s best investment solutions. And, no I don’t mean those firms with the big marketing budgets and glossy advertising, claiming they can beat the markets; budgets paid for by extortionate charges levied on the underlying investments, i.e., on your money. And, as a result of high fees your funds are guaranteed to underperform. What do the leading economists say about your adviser’s investment solutions? Would, for example, their investment approach be endorsed by Nobel prize winners? If the leading financial academics don’t like your advisers approach, I would say that’s not a good sign that you’re going to be delivered to financial freedom with them.
  12. Are they trusted by people who no longer trust IFAs? Can your target adviser give you at least two references from clients they have helped, who were ripped off by their previous IFAs? The sort of clients that will never trust an IFA again, it was that bad. Now this is a big ask I know, because what would they be doing with an IFA now, if they didn’t trust IFAs as far as they could throw them. Why not ask the client? Ask if the client wouldn’t mind talking to you in person to tell you why you might trust this adviser, when virtually all advisers are not to be trusted. Their endorsement is the best test of all.

So, I guess that’s narrowed down your list a bit. Do such IFAs exist that would pass all 12 points? Would they be so busy that they couldn’t take you on? Would they be affordable? Well amazing as it seems, yes such services exist, they are affordable and available! Right here, right now and local to you. If you have trouble finding one, please get in touch as we can help you.