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Valuable skills for financial advisors that were first learned in other professions
Valuable skills for financial advisors that were first learned in other professions

Dec 04 2023

Valuable skills for financial advisors that were first learned in other professions

Having worked in different industries before becoming a financial advisor has helped three MDRT members from the Philippines developed skills which are significantly relevant in their financial advising careers. Learn how they used these skills to build their practice and meet clients’ goals.

Topics covered

How can financial advisors apply valuable skills they learned from their previous professional experience to their current role? Arlene Genove, Daryl Dann Apacionado, and Lester Angelo Reyes share their tips. 


How public service shapes client service  

Besides being a financial advisor, Arlene Genove, a seven-year MDRT member from Sariaya, Quezon, Philippines, is a municipal councilor in her town and uses her skills honed in public service to help clients achieve their goals.  

Public service is a compound of various soft skills such as communication, empathy, relationship-building, and problem-solving, which are also essential to financial advising. “Whether I am facing my client or my constituent, I give them my full attention to understand their needs and worries,” she says. It lets her clients and constituents know she’ll be there for them whenever something happens.  

“After hearing their struggles, I either help them explore job opportunities, share how insurance plans can secure their future, or refer to programs created by the municipality that address their needs. Then, I regularly check to see how they are doing. From my experiences as a municipal councilor and financial advisor, I learned that being present builds trust, and you will be top of mind if they need something you can provide.”  

There were some challenging times when Genove needed to reset before facing her clients again. She explains, “I needed to take a breather from taking meetings. Being a municipal councilor taught me more about myself and how to deal with my emotions, and it’s carried over to my financial advising. Both my constituents and clients are the main beneficiaries for me.”  


Accounting skills for better financial management advice  

As a former finance professional, Daryl Dann Apacionado, a five-year MDRT from Calamba, Philippines, uses his intricate number-crunching abilities to devise actionable strategies beneficial to his clients. His accounting experience allows him to analyze the financial capabilities of his prospects and clients, providing realistic advice while considering the potential risks.  

“When I encounter clients with a little financial background, I do my best to explain complex financial matters in layman’s terms. Meanwhile, when facing company owners, I present comprehensive financial analyses, showing how insurance plans can help them and their business in the future.” 

However, when Apacionado becomes too technical when discussing concepts and ideas, such as assets and portfolios, he pauses and asks if they have questions. Then, he uses real-life examples they can relate to in their situation. 


Storytelling for clients’ better appreciation of financial concepts 

Working as a managing partner in an advertising agency, Lester Angelo Reyes, a six-year MDRT from Quezon City, Philippines, says storytelling is his most helpful skill. “I do social media marketing and handle the headlines, copy, and photos and ensure my content is relevant to my audience by studying what will hook their attention, which can be by sharing stories about previous clients, describing a scenario they may encounter in the future, or how our proposed actionable plans will help them during hard times. Before recommending solutions, I must understand their struggles and life targets.”  

During meetings, Reyes evaluates if they are already technically proficient in valuing the numerical coverage of insurance plans or if they are more emotional in that they prioritize how their lives can benefit from them. “Enticing people may be done through big numbers or big impact. Some may appreciate how much they can get out of the plan, but some may focus on its long-term positive impact on their family, such as how it serves as a safety net that gives them peace of mind.” As some clients struggle to grasp critical concepts such as coverage and riders, storytelling helps clarify them by sharing real-life situations, making them more relatable.  

As storytelling is a strength of Reyes’s, he continues to work on it daily through his social content and by analyzing the impact of the materials, constantly communicating with friends, families, and clients, and exchanging ideas with people in the creative field. “While we may have weaknesses that need to be addressed, we have strengths that are effective and valuable to our clients. If we put in the hard work and have good intentions, we can help more people achieve their goals.”  

Contact: MDRTeditorial@teamlewis.com