Investors who follow a financial plan or a set of guidelines have a higher chance to succeed in today’s volatile market than those who frequently change trying to match the markets. Personal finance requires planning. It is a balance of long term planning and short term ‘living’ that allows one to achieve the goals. Most of us have a reason to save. Either for a vacation or children’s education or the fancy car. Through the years, the concept of saving has undergone a significant change. It has morphed into investing, thus increasing the wealth. Saving and investment needs to be tailor made, it is no more the ‘one size fits all’. Modern day financial consultants analyze individual portfolios, balances the risks and then extend the necessary advice.
Our Frontcover sat down with Pranab Kumar Roy who moved away from a secure job and ventured into a career in financial consulting. He shared his thoughts and experiences about challenges faced in choosing unconventional career paths and some essentials about saving and investments
What inspired you to start this venture?
After working with couple of top notch financial institutes in the country for around 8 years, selling and marketing their financial instruments, I realized that there was a huge opportunity to explore my expertise in the open market and decided to start my own financial consultancy firm.
I also realized that there are two main things that are absolutely necessary in the consultancy business:
1. Extend honest and accurate advice to people. Once people start trusting, business grows automatically.
2. Keep an open mind for learning new things. This helps in being dynamic and people start to respect you as a professional.
Tell us about your venture.
In 2013, I started “MINDSEC capital” with the vision to make people aware of:
a) Benefits of Financial Planning
b) Awareness of new financial products.
c) Asset allocation.
d) Risk management.
What were the initial challenges?
I was the first in my family who left a secured job and decided to start a business. Initially no one was really supportive of the idea, the opposition was mainly because of conventional thinking that a regular job is “safe and secure”. It took me quite a while to convince my friends and family about my business concept. My elder brother was the first to understand my idea and thereafter support me.
Challenges once you set off…..
Within a few months into the business, I realized that most people do not understand the significance of a financial advisor. Since it is a commission-based business and there are no strict qualifications required to profess the same, at times people are doubtful. However, with time, the attitude is changing. More and more MBAs, CAs, Financial Planners, Tax consultants have started entering into this business. Nowadays we focus on Financial Planning rather than selling a financial product. People have also started realizing how we as financial planners, help them to achieve their financial goals. The main challenge now is to spread this awareness more. I am trying to tackle this challenge by arranging for awareness workshops on this subject.
What do you love most about your job?
Financial Planning is all about making people aware of their future goals and how to achieve the same depending on life style, their risk appetite, current market scenario, government policy, investments opportunities and many more. This is not about selling a product and closing a deal. This is an opportunity to participate in the journey of achieving your client’s future goal. You are engaged with your client at every step helping and advising. There is a personal connect and a very gratifying feeling at the end of the journey.
The profession is based on “Maximum gains and honest advice”. Client’s benefit is the first priority. In the short run, personal returns may not be satisfactory but in long run it is bound to grow. A satisfied client will always introduce me to potential customers and credibility is a huge determinant to expand this business. It is all about trust and faith in my expertise.
What is you biggest take away from your journey till date?
Choose the profession which suits you the best.
Assess your abilities (both physical and financial) well and make decisions accordingly.
It is ok to give your dream a chance, whichever sphere you may be working in.
Where do you want to be in 10 yrs time?
My dream is to reach out to people all over India and make them aware of ‘proper’ investments. People in India save money to secure their future but because of lack of financial awareness they do not invest their money to multiply the same. They spend lot of time and energy to enhance their career but most are not aware of how to invest their hard earned money to reap the benefits of economic growth especially in a vibrant economy like India.
Can you give 5 tips to people on investment?
a) Decide your goal and the time required to achieve it. (Example- $50K in 10 years)
b) Select the product as per your ability to take Risk. (analyze your risk taking ability carefully).
c) Check the internal cost/expense ratio of the product.
d) Insurance and investment are two different products. Never mix both the two.
e) Give time to your investments. Check at least once in a quarter whether everything is on the right track or need some modification.
f) Always consult a financial adviser.
Mindsec Capital is a Jamshedpur( India) based financial consultancy firm
Written byDayeeta Roy
Dayeeta, has her hands full being a mother of one, wife of one and full time job of one.A Physicist by education and a researcher by profession, she enjoys her daily work very much.She loves to cook and writes two blogs."Food,Friends and Fun.......I have everything!!” www.dayeetasworld.blogspot.nl www.hiji-biji-chhorar-moja.blogspot.com