Charlie Hewlett, our newest Client Relationship Manager (CRM) at First Wealth, completed our 2022 finance internship back in August.
After some careful decision making, Charlie decided to come back to work with us! We caught up with Charlie to find out more about his journey so far, why he came back to First Wealth, his motivators, and the future of financial planning.
Charlie, can you tell us more about your role, and what you do?
For a Client Relationship Manager, I guess it is mainly admin. I deal with requests from the client in relation to their wants and needs and this can include anything from valuations to changing their house address.
We are available to both the client and their adviser to aid their work together. Because of that, we are integral to client-adviser communication.
You could think of us as the gatherers of information and data, the Technical Analysts as the organisers and decipherers, and the Financial Advisers as the implementers.
You’ve had a slightly unconventional way of coming to work with us. Can you tell us a bit about why you came back after the finance internship?
I spent a lot of time during my finance internship deliberating whether I should stay on at First Wealth or go to university and do a law conversion as planned.
At the time I thought it best to do the latter. Very quickly I began to realise that my interests were aligned with finance, not law. And once I realised that I knew that, continuing down a path which I wasn’t interested in was a reductive use of my time.
So, I came back and haven’t looked back since!
So, what actually makes finance your passion?
What I am doing now as a Client Relationship Manager isn’t my final goal.
It is the perfect steppingstone for me because I find investment, building portfolios, and assessing risk and volatility in financial behaviour fascinating. This all results in opportunities to build client relationships that are invaluable.
Beyond that, I think I am most interested in the future of the profession. There are so few young advisers right now, and this will have to change at some point. I want to be part of that change.
Who do you look to for inspiration?
My family – I am lucky and don’t have to look too far afield for role models.
What is the most valuable financial advice anyone ever gave you; and what advice would you give as a Client Relationship Manager?
Start saving early!
Start saving as soon as you get your first salary or your first full-time job. This is the ‘pay-yourself-first’ principle. The longer you have to save for future-you, the better your financial position will be.
The advice that I would give as a Client Relationship Manager is to be wary of inflation. A lot of people assume that keeping all of their funds as cash in the bank is a safe saving bet. What they don’t realise is that, due to inflation, money decreases in value when it sits as cash in the bank. Think about where your money is.
What do you think the future holds for financial planning?
As an oversimplification, there will be a shift in who advisers are. We are increasingly seeing more and more young people become interested in finance, and by extension wealth management. That is likely to continue.
The next generation of clients coming through will want planners they can relate to – advisers from their own generation. So, I guess the future holds a shift in personnel and the faces of finance firms.
This is something that First Wealth does well, I think. Our young advisers have often just recently (or are currently) going through the same life phases as our clients. This helps us understand the client and their anxieties, rather than just the number in their accounts.
Do you have any advice or tips for anyone who (like you) might be considering a change in career path, or a finance internship?
You don’t have to be 100% sure about something to do it – the best way to start something is to bite the bullet and start. There are times to grit through things, but if it costs your present satisfaction, it isn’t worth it.
So, ask yourself the difficult questions and be honest.
Whether it be from your finance internship, or your move from university to the working world, what have you taken away from the last few months?
That nothing is permanent; change can be achieved quickly if you have the right mindset; and to think of change as a step in a different direction rather than a step backwards.
This document is marketing material for a retail audience and does not constitute advice or recommendations. Past performance is not a guide to future performance and may not be repeated. The value of investments and the income from them may go down as well as up and investors may not get back the amount originally invested.