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Five minutes with…Alistair Cunningham

Ahead of speaking at Money Marketing Interactive in May, Wingate Financial Planning chartered financial planner Alistair Cunningham talks about his advice market hero and liking working with ‘difficult’ people

What can be done to improve the supply of advice?

Increased standards, or at least the perception of increased standards, from those who need advice. Also, an understanding of what advice is and is not.

How long will the DB transfer market boom continue?

I think the boom is over, the question now is how bad will the decline be?

How important is it for the advice community to share best practice?

Very – the need for advice is significant and the competition near zero. Sharing best practice truly can be a win/win for those in the advice community who do it. I certainly try to live that objective.

If you could scrap one piece of regulation, what would it be?

Some of the disclosure requirements of Mifid II are overboard. However, I do believe it is better to over, rather than under, disclose.

Five minutes with…Claire Phillips

Who is your advice market hero?

Echelon Wealthcare managing director Al Rush was the man of 2017. I cannot help but believe his early intervention in Port Talbot with the British Steel Pension Scheme did anything other than save dozens of pensioners from sub-optimal retirement choices. Knowing him, he’ll be disappointed that the few he is trying to seek recovery for now weren’t saved sooner.

Who would be your perfect client, and who would be a nightmare one?

I genuinely enjoy working with ‘difficult’ people. These are people, like me, who are fussy consumers. When you finally win them over they are the most loyal advocates of what you have done, and when they refer they come with the qualification, “if you’re good enough for X, I’m sure we’ll get on well”.

Despite enjoying working well with precise people, I struggle with those who feel the need to know every single option, permutation and technical point in detail. I am no fan of a ‘trust me I’m a doctor’ style of advice, but it’s taken me the best part of two decades to squeeze what I can in my head and if you’re paying a professional fee for professional advice there does become “too much” knowledge.

Cunningham is speaking at the session on cashflow modelling at 16:10. To register your interest for Money Marketing Interactive, click here

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