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Advisers risk becoming 'out of touch' with next generation

“They’re seen as ‘the kid’ of my client rather than my client. I’ve experienced this as a client and as an adviser.”

Ms Drakard added it was important not to judge the inheritor who may have different goals and to understand the changing drivers of different generations. 

She thought younger investors tended to want to feel like they were involved in the investment choice, wanted online access and didn’t “just trust”.

According to the report, advisers should look at offering ‘firm-to-family’ advice to ensure all generational preferences were accounted for.

It stated: “Services that are valued by donors may not necessarily be to the taste of their inheritors and it is important for advisers to understand that having a relationship with a donor may not be enough to convince their inheritors to become clients themselves.

“Nevertheless, donors provide channels to engage with inheritors and adviser firms that are adequately prepared can use these to develop broader firm-to-family relationships.”

The report also noted that advisers didn’t need to “try to do everything themselves” — particularly within the challenging regulatory framework in the UK — but could partner with the services of other providers to broaden their product suite to facilitate every aspect of a family.

But David Hearne, director at Satis Asset Management, disagreed. He said: “What’s the point of having a niche —such as working with retirees with complex tax positions, with consultants and doctors or local business owners — if your plan is then to simply follow the money, whatever the future needs and characteristics of your current client’s children might be?

“Advisers should focus on being the best adviser they can be, in the area they have identified as best for them, and then be confident of attracting future clients on that basis, not on the expectation that they have an intergenerational entitlement to managing a family’s wealth.”

Mr Hearne thought advisers should only seek to advise the younger generations if they were in the niche the adviser had  identified or because it served their older clients’ wishes.

“Just build a financial planning business that answers the questions clients have at the time they have them. Build it and they will come.”

Peter Chadborn, director at Plan Money, said it would be “naive” for advisers to assume clients’ children would automatically want to retain the same firms’ services upon inheritance.

He also thought advisers would have an uphill battle in trying to appeal to clients’ inheritors if a firm’s service propositions became “stale and dated”.