Liz Wilson, director at Wilson Financial, reflects on the meaning of customer service and the importance of forging personal connections
Q: Who inspired you to become a broker?
A: Working in-branch for a bank gave me an insider’s view of what customer service in banking was really like, and it was nothing like how I remembered it as a child, visiting the bank with my parents. We would walk into the back of the branch, behind the tellers, with mum and dad, to the manager’s office and figure out how to finance their build. The manager knew and respected them, and I wondered how the system had become so broken and sales-focused that we had lost that personal touch. I knew I loved working with numbers and people, so moving across to become self-employed as a broker felt like a natural progression.
Q: What’s one of your recent career highlights
A: Finding my tribe and my mentor. I was really on my own with my fi rst aggregator, but when my mentor found me he brought me into Astute Financial and I found a family of like-minded people who support me.
Q: What’s the greatest challenge for brokers at this time?
A: Adapting to change! Compliance, systems, processes, policy – it’s all changing right now. Do not fight change; embrace it and spend time on building a better business.
Q: If you won $1m, how would you spend it?
A: I think I’d need a holiday to figure that out. I really, really, really need a holiday with my family, so I’d start with that. Clarity is a valuable asset, and my head spins most days.
Q: What do you wish you’d known when you started out as a broker?
A: The simple philosophy of taking risks: if you fail you learn; if you succeed you reap the returns. Zero loss.
Q: What are your top survival tips for working in finance?
A: Forget about the details, and work on forging personal connections with your clients. We all hate paperwork and change, but people are where we can share real stories and find common values. In a climate like the one we are in currently, connection is even more important.