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Diary of adviser: Neil Wortham

Diary of adviser: Neil Wortham


It is early when I hit the M25 on my way into our office in Weybridge. I worry how my body will cope with the G-forces exerted upon it as I accelerate to a frightening 24 MPH. I needn’t have been too concerned though, as it doesn’t take long for the traffic to grind to a crawl again.

I have two important meetings today; one with a service company we work with, and the second with a software provider as part of a project I’m working on to find a reliable solution for analysing clients’ defined benefit pensions.

Both meetings are a great success, and while in Weybridge I also catch up with my line manager and several of our partners (advisers) and paraplanners. 

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The journey home is slightly better.


I have an 11am meeting with our head of recruitment in our London office, to provide him with a detailed overview of the outsourced solutions that we offer partners who join us. Inductions with new partners, and meeting potential new partners is a key part of my role, as we want to ensure both partners and support staff have the best start in our business as is possible.

Leaving just after 6pm I commute back home to Hertfordshire. This provides an opportunity to clear emails and make notes from the day’s meetings.

With the evenings now staying light, I quickly change into my cycling gear and head off on my bike for a ride. 


Wednesday is back-to-back meetings, helping partners develop their business and identify advice opportunities. I also attend the weekly compliance meeting to contribute with trends I see developing. I also work alongside one of our trainee Partners to give them guidance and support on the post-client meeting activities that we do at Foster Denovo. After seeing a client, there is a huge amount of research undertaken to ensure they are being offered the best solutions and support.  

I spend the evening catching up with emails and returning calls.


Having woken up too soon and not getting get back to sleep I decided to head into London early.

The day comprises of meetings with several partners who are working on complex cases for very high net worth clients. This is my favourite part of the job; it allows more complex scenarios to be debated, different ideas worked through, and makes use of my technical skills. With financial advice being so subjective, it is important to explore all avenues and potential pitfalls upfront. This makes the rest of the business writing process far simpler.

Acting as a critical friend and having two people look at a client file also often results in additional opportunities being identified. There is a definite advantage to working with others, rather than in isolation.


I spend the day working from home, getting back to partners on things discussed during the week, moving various projects forward, and testing a new salary sacrifice calculator, which we have developed in-house for our group pension scheme work. 

I also create a demonstration tool to help explain the concept of 'sequence risk', so our partners can talk to their clients in relation to stock market volatility.