Last week was the first anniversary of launching my business, and honestly, I don’t know where it has gone. In hindsight, this probably wasn’t the best year to launch, but as we often tell our clients, we don’t have a crystal ball and can’t predict the future.
I thought I’d planned for just about every eventuality when I started, but like many people, I hadn’t planned for a global pandemic. It wasn’t even on my list of probable events let alone high on it.
Whilst I hadn’t planned for it, I was very fortunate, as being a tiny business, I had the flexibility to be able to make changes quickly and easily. Work naturally slowed down, but that was ok, when I set up, I’d prepared for slow times, just in case. Then work stopped, with nothing on the horizon; all very worrying for a new business just six months in, still, I tried to be positive and took the time to work on the business itself.
I worked on improving my templates, I learned how to create a website, I wrote a few articles for various publications, and tried to remain focussed during what I hoped was a temporary blip. Fortunately for me it was temporary, after three weeks of no work, I was contacted by a planner wanting some paraplanning help.They hadn’t used an outsourced paraplanner and had seen my name in an article so thought they would give me a call. We had a good natter, and now we have been working together for five months. Within a few weeks, I had taken on more clients and things were picking up. Sparrow Paraplanning was going well and, I’d managed to find myself working with some of the best people ever!
One thing that’s clear from the work I’m now doing with planners is how many clients are really seeing the power and benefit of good financial planning. The last six months has given may people the chance to really take stock, reflect andfocus on what’s important to them. It has often led to a change in their priorities and plans for the future – retirement dates brought forward, working hours reduced and bucket list activities put firmly on the agenda.
Until our crystal ball becomes a lot more reliable though, we still have to rely on our skills as financial planners and paraplanners to help our clients plan for their changing futures. This has perhaps never been more important than now as we’re going to be in this unusual state of flux for a while and it will be a challenging time for many.
Having a well-constructed, flexible Financial Plan gives people the peace of mind that their finances are under control and they’ll be able to cope with whatever the future brings. We are providing that peace of mind, giving clients a little bit of stability in an unstable time, and as challenging as it has been, and probably will be for a while, we should all be very proud of that.
– Caroline Stuart, Sparrow Paraplanning