Many financial advice firms will take a product-driven approach, focusing purely on financial strategies and investment plans. However, with this approach you run the risk of simply ending up with a series of products and no clear direction. In the words of Lawrence J. Peter, “if you don’t know where you are going, you will probably end up somewhere else.”
At Jane Smith Financial Planning, we strongly believe that by having a clear vision of what you want life to look like, ie clear goals, you are far more likely to achieve them. Working through each of your goals, putting a price on each and setting a proposed date, we help you develop a clear plan (your Life Roadmap Report) confirming the steps you need to take to create the lifestyle you desire.
- Be specific – what do you want to achieve, when and how much will it cost? Be clear about what you want to achieve, whether that’s paying for your children’s education, planning your retirement, funding a dream holiday or moving home and don’t forget to factor in inflation!
- Be realistic – whilst it’s always good to dream, it’s also important to ensure that your goals are achievable. Our business coach uses an acronym, BHAG; you need to have a Big Hairy Audacious Goal. Maybe slightly more eloquent are the words of Norman Vincent Peale “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars”. Whichever you prefer, both have the same meaning; with hard work and effort, it’s a stretch, but it’s possible and even if you don’t quite reach, you’ll have achieved something amazing and probably more than if you’d aimlessly drifted along.
- Be as efficient as you can be – Using all tax breaks available to you makes sense. Tax rules are subject to constant change and it’s essential that you review your affairs regularly and plan accordingly. Planning ahead to reduce tax liabilities and paying no more tax than necessary can significantly increase the chances of your plan being successful.
- Monitor and review your plan – success will be far more likely with regular review. Review your goals at least annually and measure how you’re progressing towards them. Do they still reflect what you want to achieve? Have you taken the steps agreed? Are any changes needed?
As a client, I hope this will have reminded you of the value in our services, or maybe it’s made you think about new goals that we need to add to your plan. If you’re not yet working with us, or if you know someone who might benefit from working with us, we’d be delighted to hear from you. Discussing your goals with us can be highly beneficial as you’ll benefit from an objective third-party view, as well as the expertise to help advise you with financial planning issues.