Each January our team kicks off the year with the First Wealth Why Day. It is a day to reinstate our values, get everyone together and to discuss our plans for the year. This year felt even more important after surviving the rollercoaster of 2020. Though it was a virtual event, the energy was great and was the perfect starting point for another exciting year.
The began with a little reflection. I’m super proud of what we did achieve last year, under the most challenging of circumstances:
- First and foremost, we survived. While many businesses were sadly forced to furlough members of their team, close for a period or in the worst cases, shut their doors permanently, we were able to pick up our equipment and go fully remote in a matter of days. Kerry, our brilliant Practice Manager, will tell you it was easier said than done, but none the less it was done!
- We achieved our Certified B Corporation status in September, acknowledging that we meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose.
- We grew our team by four and now have a total of eighteen members of the First Wealth crew, bringing in valuable experience in both client facing and administration positions.
- We successfully integrated a new HR system, Culture Amp, that helped us manage the team’s professional development virtually and a new team welfare and benefit system, Heka, to provide the team access to wellbeing activities like Pilates, gym classes and even healthy meals delivered to their doorstep.
- We also sustained our Women in Finance Charter commitment, ensuring a balanced board of male and females within First Wealth.
Each year, we encourage input from several team members during the Why Day. It’s far more interesting than hearing me talk all morning, and it’s also great for honing presentations skills.
We heard from Rob Schwarz and Scott Millar who are really starting to flourish as Financial Planners, their skills have clearly not gone unnoticed with an abundance of clients referring friends and family to join us. Rob and Scott are now running their own planning teams, and helping the Technical Analysts and Client Relationship Managers in their team learn and grow.
Head of Technical, Dan Evans, discussed the training plan he has developed for the team, from new joiners to established members, to progress in their career path. I know how much work went into the training plan, so thank you Dan! Aside from the required professional qualifications, we ensure our Technical Analysts and Financial Planners develop a high level of soft skills, technical knowledge, and efficiency before they are signed off to advise in our business. It’s important that we continue to work hard to change the perceptions of our profession, whilst allowing new talent to thrive.
Fresh from her promotion to Head of Client Relationship Managers, Humaira Chowdhury talked about the launch of the updated client portal, Wealth Platform, that allows clients to gain more insight into their portfolios in real time. With ever expanding options when it comes to technology, we ensure to have tried and tested any new platforms before we introduce them to our clients.
After lunch, we had a truly phenomenal session from magician extraordinaire, Nick Einhorn, who was amazing! I must admit to a little pre display scepticism about how magical a virtual magic show could really be, but Nick blew us away with his talent and I was none the wiser as to how he managed it. Anyone looking for something different on a video call, I cannot recommend Nick highly enough.
Claire, our Compliance Director, has been with us for ten years, and is an integral part of our business. No one works harder than Claire and it’s fantastic to see just how successful she has become. Claire’s presentation was very real, raw at times, focussing on some of the challenges she has faced and overcome in her career to date. She is in an inspiration to all of us.
Kerry, who looks after many parts of the business including HR, announced a new and improved flexible holiday allowance, just in time for me to finish the day with an American rap superstar, Eminem, inspired presentation (slides on request) on our plans for the next twelve months.
The team left our Why Day knowing exactly why we are here and what we are going to achieve. I am excited about the business and what we are doing. We have an opportunity to continue to build a business that challenges all of the stereotypes of financial services and stands for positive change. We’re all looking forward to a successful 2021.
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.