Brokers to 'think forward' at FBAA conference

Registrations open for 2023 national event and gala

Brokers to 'think forward' at FBAA conference


By Ryan Johnson

The FBAA will host its annual national conference on the Gold Coast on November 3, with a focus on helping brokers "think forward”.

Starting at the Royal Pines and expecting 1,000 attendees, the event will feature presentations and networking opportunities for brokers before the focus turns to the FBAA Gala Dinner at Movie World and the FBAA's Annual Awards of Supremacy.

FBAA CEO Peter White AM (pictured above) said the handpicked lineup of guest speakers is designed for brokers to look beyond their current environment into the future and the world around them.

“Understandably, people were caught up with the pandemic and now its rising inflation and interest rates. All of that is quite distracting for everybody, but we need to think beyond that,” said White.

“We need to think about the future, especially where we see things are heading with technology advancements such as chatbots, GPTs, AI, and open banking. We can't be stuck in the moment because that’s a dangerous place to be.”

Who are the guest speakers?

With that in mind, the FBAA wants to ensure that the event is far from being run of the mill.

The event will kick off with Gus Balbontin, investor, adviser and explorer and chief technology officer of Lonely Planet.

“Gus is great speaker with a fantastic background who always forms his discussions from an intelligent and innovative place,” White said.

Next on the list is Jacqui Cooper, a world champion skier and ambassador for La Trobe Financial.

“Jacqui is the definition of a champion. She’s really nailed it in her sphere, and she is such a fantastic motivational speaker,” White said. “Then you’ve got one of the most renowned speakers on the circuit like Michael McQueen. A true disrupter and leader in every sense of the word.”

The conference will also host a talk by Jansen Andre, an ultra-runner, businessperson, and mental health advocate. White said he is personally looking forward to this one, given his own stance of bringing awareness of mental wealth into the industry.

“Not so long ago, it was taboo and never spoken about, and today it’s becoming much more accepted and normalised, which is a wonderful thing,” White said.

“I can’t forget our last speaker, Peter Switzer – a highly respected economist and someone who is part of our FBAA family,” said White. “Pete's always got a great humour team, but understanding what’s happening in the markets is just as important as anything else.”

White said he hopes brokers will engage with all the seminars.

“The world is a lot bigger than us. If we want to be successful, we need to look at successful people beyond our industry and apply their lessons within our context,” said White.

“If we can’t identify and understand success beyond ourselves, we’ll be thinking and operating within a very narrow sphere.”

Reflecting on 30 years of advocacy

This year’s FBAA national conference is unique as it marks 30 years since the association began.

There for the past 20 years of them, White said it had been an “amazing journey from the early days until now”.

“I remember when I first started there was like 200 brokers and 20 bucks in the bank. We've buried in and made it happen,” he said.

“The key thing that I reflect on was the fact that we spent a lot of time and effort to make sure we connected with our community and listened to their problems and ideas. That ethos has continued to this day.”

Registrations are still open for the National Industry Conference plus the “infamous” nighttime Gala dinner and awards ceremony.

White said he hoped to see the industry there on the day or dressed up at night as a character beginning with the letters F, B, or A.

“I enjoy taking the piss out of myself, so come along and see what I dress up as this year,” he said.

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