View more on these topics

Independent view

Around 7,000 people of 66 nationalities with seven simultaneous language translations all thrown together near to Disneyland sounds like a UN conference on weapons of mass destruction. In Anaheim, Los Angeles, there will be an event in June that will certainly change people&#39s lives around the world.

I am referring to the 77th annual meeting of the Million Dollar Round Table, the premier association for financial professionals. For four energetic days, the world&#39s very best financial advisers will listen to an eclectic mix of speakers explaining how we can balance our hectic lives between business, clients, staff, family, community, social and charitable activities. The MDRT calls this the whole-person concept.

Yet, for many UK advisers, the MDRT is not known or carries the stigma of being a ra-ra sales organisation.

My response to such critics is simple. How can you possibly pass judgement if you have not attended an MDRT meeting? Do you really believe that some of the UK&#39s most accomplished advisers have nothing better to do than spend a week away from the office with the expense that goes with it? Do you really feel it is a waste of time to spend a week with 7,000 of the world&#39s finest advisers, all willing to share ideas?

MDRT membership is based on business production levels along with a commitment to the highest of ethics. Basic membership entails commission and/or fee production of £47,000 in 2003, with three times higher production entitling the designation Court of the Table and six times Top of the Table.

Membership includes a subscription to the magazine Round the Table, which includes summaries of annual meeting speeches, adviser profiles, practice management techniques and, dare I say it in this politically correct 21st Century, sales ideas.

Main platform sessions at the annual meeting are interspersed with focus meetings targeted at different aspects of the whole-person concept, from sales ideas to practice management, marketing and media to mentoring, health and fitness to successful parenting, technical knowledge to prospecting techniques. The challenge is choosing which to attend.

Highlight of the annual meeting are the main platform speakers, who have magnificent stories to tell. Memorable speeches have been from US Secretary of State Colin Powell, actor Christopher Reeve, Mayor Rudolph Guiliani, Barbara Bush and Frank Abagnale, on whom the movie Catch Me If You Can was based.

Other speakers have told amazing stories of bravery, overcoming fear and achievements in art, music, sports, community work and charity. These are inspiring speeches which lift the spirit and create a zest for a broadened life. It is all too easy for us to get bogged down with compliance and forget what is going on around us.

The www.MDRT.org website is a massive resource, including texts of decades of speeches on virtually any subject you may find relevant.

Part of the attraction of the MDRT is the chance to make new friendships with advisers from almost every country. Each meeting strengthens such relationships so that we help each other, mentor each other and have people to visit wherever we travel.

No matter how successful we think we are, the MDRT shows us there is always someone doing something bigger, better, more efficiently than us. As a Top of the Table member, I thought I was doing fairly well until I met an American who saw only six clients a year and worked only six months a year but whose case size was about 80 times the size of mine. This is mind-blowing but incredibly powerful for altering the focus of what we do.

Although this article is clearly a plug for the MDRT, it is written by someone who cares passionately about the future of our profession. With so much doom and gloom, it is vital to find avenues to help us to grow and prosper for the benefit of our clients. Regulation may be driving us out of business but MDRT members are still growing strong.

The MDRT has made such a positive impact upon my life and is my open secret of success. I share this secret with you, not because it benefits me but because I wish to see our profession thrive. I can see no better solution for this than the MDRT and I hope to see you in Los Angeles.

Bhupinder Anand is managing director of Anand Associates

Recommended

Special treatment

The diversity and sophistication of the annuity market offers considerable opportunity for advisers who can provide a multifaceted level of research and admin. In practice, however, few firms have the time and resources to specialise in a market which is growing rapidly in complexity and range. The time has come to take stock and, where […]

Irish Perm offers self-cert at 90% LTV

Irish Permanent is offering a self-certification mortgage at 90 per cent loan to value for self-employed second time buyers and remortgages. The mortgage is available as a two-year discounted tracker at 4.99 per cent, with 5 per cent redemption penalties in the first two years and the option to overpay up to 20 per cent […]

Eagle is not only MVA offender

Further to Julian Mumford&#39s letter (Money Marketing, February 19), I can inform him and everyone else who may be interested that this problem with market value adjusters does not rest solely with Eagle Star. Having undertaken a review of with-profits bond holdings, we have discovered that this penalty ploy is being applied both by Norwich […]

Citigroup – Enhanced Growth Plan

Type: Capital-protected bond Aim: Growth linked to the performance of the FTSE 100 index or Dow Jones Global Titans Index Minimum-maximum investment: £5,000-no maximum, Isa £3,000-£7,000 Term: Five years Guarantee: UK enhanced growth option one &#45 original capital returned in full regardless of index performance. Global enhanced growth option two &#45 original capital returned in […]

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up

Comments

    Leave a comment

    Close

    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm

    Email: customerservices@moneymarketing.com