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What advisers are saying: Getting clients to implement advice

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The value that protection brings in peace of mind far outweighs the cost. But it does not always outweigh inertia. 

For instance, relevant life policies (when you qualify for them, say, as a shareholding director of an SME) deliver that peace of mind at tax-reduced cost with tax-free benefits.

As an employer looking to reward and encourage loyalty in key employees with family and dependants, setting up and paying for an RLP delivers tax-reduced tax-free benefits for the employee – low-cost loyalty.

What’s not to like? Yet for nearly eight months, since my son Noah’s birth, the application pack has sat on my desk. Here are some of the things I have achieved while not putting an RLP in place:

  • Carried out a full audit on the number of door handles in our home – partly because mini Wickenden loves handles at the moment and partly to assess the level of fool-proofing required when he can get at what is behind said handles.
  • Tracked down and bought the gold (coloured stainless steel) Casio calculator watch I always wanted as a kid.
  • Had 11 haircuts.

Newton’s first law of motion states: “An object at rest will stay at rest, forever, as long as nothing pushes or pulls on it; an object in motion will stay in motion, travelling in a straight line, forever, until something pushes or pulls on it.”

So what does it take to create this kind of unstoppable motion? What is necessary to overcome the huge proportion of advised clients that agree there is a need, see the benefits and still do nothing?

The Railway Passengers Assurance Company (circa 1849) used to have insurance ticket machines on platforms covering death and disablement. While I am not advocating a wholesale shift to a D2C model of this ilk, it does underline that more could be done to align with (and positively influence) the consumer’s journey.

The fact is, as BBC’s Horizon programme pointed out last week, the deliberate, logical part of your mind which is capable of analysing a problem and coming up with a rational answer (and the part of the brain that most of our industry’s efforts are aimed at most of the time) is slow, requires lots of energy and is extremely lazy.

On the other hand, the intuitive part of your mind is powerful and is actually responsible for most of the things that you say, do, think and believe.

That is not going to change but what we do as an industry to help more people arrive at better outcomes can.

Phil Wickenden is managing director of So Here’s The Plan phil@soherestheplan.co.uk

IFA quotes from research…

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