October 18, 2021

How perception affects Financial Planners/Advisers and their clients with Raju KR – Transcript

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SUMMARY KEYWORDS

financial planner, life insurance, people, financial planning, philippines, client, life, product, industry, pandemic, financial, malaysia, document, plan, upgrading, practice, financial goals, guess, malaysian, years

SPEAKERS

Gwen Lazarito, Raju K. Ramasamy

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Hey guys, welcome to another episode of the financial planners South East Asian podcast when here and today we are joined by not only a licensed or Certified Financial Planner, he is also the founder of blueprint group of companies. Raju Ramasamy. Good there as you did on so I let your last name right. I forgot to ask earlier.

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

Yeah, you got it right. Granted, you got it. Right. But I can address me as Raju, that’s fine with me.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Thanks so much. Raju, thank you so much for coming onto the show. How are you today?

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

Excellent. I mean, it’s I it’s a new thing, new experience because being locked down. And while it’s interesting, new, a lot of new ideas, new new way of practicing.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Yeah, definitely. So but I’m actually very optimistic about this. And I’d like to think that a few years from now, once this lockdown is over, and the pandemic is done, we’ll listen back to these recordings, like this podcast, we’re talking about the pandemic, and just, you know, laugh about it, hopefully laugh about it, and yeah, and come out stronger. And, you know, because we have learned a lot of things during the pandemic. But before we delve into that, I guess what I and I guess our listeners would also like to know is that Well, you’ve been in the industry for such a long time. You’ve, I’ve, I’ve done a little bit of research, and I guess you’ve been in the industry for more than 30 years, right? Yeah. Yeah. Cool. And so as I’ve heard from other financial planners from Malaysia, the Malaysian financial planning industry is still, I guess, in a sense is at its infancy. So I am very curious to know that 30 years ago, why did you get decide to get into the timber industry in the first place? Well, Grant,

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

I mean, I tried to be brief as much as possible. But it’s a long story in the sense of when I was only 16 years old, being the eldest in the family, I lost my dad. So I need to come out from a very rural place in Malaysia, and get to the city and walk the journey alone. And that’s why I got into city, Kuala Lumpur, and went to high school thereafter. And whilst I was in the high school selfs, I was self supporting, I was invited for a carrier opportunity talk in the life insurance business. And this is a very large company in in Asia, green, Eastern life. And they’re quite big in Singapore, in Malaysia as well. So I was invited for a carrier talk. And here comes in a sales manager who says, You have walked into a goldmine and you’re going to make a lot of money, you’re going to drive big cars, and you’re going to leave the big homes while and all the rah rah was truly exciting. And imagine that was at the age of 20. And at age 20, you show me some sports cars, and you know about lifestyle. Well, I get carried away, that was how the first talk was. And I actually ran into the life insurance business to make some money because the margins were very, very high those days. And so so I ended up taking up the life insurance contract with this company and started my life while studying, I was selling life insurance. Of course, when I started receiving my first check, I got even more excited, very, very motivating, because the money was good. And I got into it, and thereafter Yay, I think I’m at the right spot. So within a period of about seven to eight years, I I grew very well I think, I started buying I bought the first Beatles, Volkswagen they call it that Yeah. So that was my first car and I just got into it and I started enjoying it. And I had a lot of friends, you know, who were very supportive about what I was doing the only two products, basically those days one was the whole life and the other is an endowment product. So these were the two products pretty straightforward. I was still selling and selling and selling. And here comes Well, it’s good, interesting, and I was very committed in terms of upgrading myself, so I got enrolled with the Malaysian Insurance Institute, and I listened to a lot of talks by great people in the industry. And I took up the life underwriters training, LTC, they call it live underwriters trainee Council, they offer these programs which involves personal insurance, business insurance, personal growth, these are modules and thereafter you are best off with a fellow so I continue studying the more I got into it, my practice start improving the way I engage my clients started improving. And again, in most of the conferences I attend, I have attended live and Writers Association of Australia I’ve attended the conferences I’ve attended conferences organized in the Philippines, Asia, Pacific, Singapore, name all these Asia Pacific life insurance Congress. So when I when in all this Congress in the met a lot of very successful people, I got more in more involved with it. Basically, I was very indoctrinated with a concept of what life insurance was eventually, then I gave it a shot in 1993. I did my million dollar round table and I was a million dollar round table member, provisional member first year and I went all the way to Dallas, Texas, attended the first conference, while I was I was given a very grand welcome with a green tag on my, on my jacket, and everybody was giving me a hug and say look, welcome to mdrt. And there you go. and thereafter I started qualifying year after year and number of roundtable meetings attended eventually, life member. And once I got into it, I am the I mean, it’s just that I believe in the concept of life insurance, which, which which provides, you know, for the living, and for me it is, is a very important concept that that every one has to embrace. So that’s how, you know to be brief. That’s how I got into the life insurance business.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Yeah, wonderful, is actually a really nice story because you started in the industry, because you were promised that you were going to get rich, right? And then the more that you delve into, you know, educating yourself, you got really excited and and I think it’s really an exciting time especially I think during those times here in the Philippines. insurances were still a taboo, like, no buddy really believed in it. Because it was something like you were just selling a promise. That’s what other financial or at least risk advisors would say here in the Philippines that you are essentially selling a promise, but because you believed in that it actually provided you with the fruits of your labor. But before I ask the question that actually a lot of my colleagues want to ask, I’d like to ask first read you like, having been in the industry, I guess for more than three decades, that’s not an easy feat. And I understand that you kept on educating yourself and improving your practice. But what would you say were some of the best decisions you’ve made, that has enabled you to stay in the business for such a long time.

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

This is the a lot of things that happens in this career in this very noble carrier, it’s perception. You know, we feel Wow, while in Philippines or Malaysia or in Singapore, or in some developing countries, this is what people feel but people feel about life insurance. I humbly disagree to this. It’s all about perception, concept of life insurance, the product itself, the way it has been structured. It is a very, very important tool in the lives of any human who generates an income and the concept of income replacement providing for the loved ones. It’s something that you know, any human like a participant, so I think it all boils down To the belief system, the practitioner himself, himself has. So I mean, for me to read, I mean to be in two states for such a long time, more than three decades, I believe in the concept of life insurance, you know, and there’s nothing that can replace that, you know, it provides. I mean, it can replace your income, it can fund your your critical illness, it can provide health insurance, and the pooling of the risk the concept of pooling of them because someone else is going to pay when we get when you get into into trouble, and you’ll be paid to someone else when they get into trouble. So the concept is very, very divided. You know that that is a sign of conviction and believe that I have in myself when I met a lot of great people in the industry, I mean, Norman Levy, I mean, those who have been in the life insurance industry, they should know, a legend, Tony Gordon melody factors. And these are great people in the industry. And every time I go for the roundtable meeting, I get to see them, wow, it’s a very different feeling when I mean, you, I normally in the business of love and compassion, you are involved in a practice which, which provides for young children, you know, for me, those are gone, I can go on and on, you know, and I can recite a sermon on this. So, so I mean, to answer you how I kept myself going, and even now, well, I think coming back to besides insurance, of course, when I’m when deeper into it, well got indoctrinated into it, I must say, when I got into it, what happens is a look, it’s not just about selling life insurance products, I think in the journey of an individual or a business owner, there are many things, you know, it’s just not about managing the risk. But there are other areas. And when I went in to the roundtable meetings, frequently, what I saw is, the life insurance business itself was evolving to financial planning. And, I mean, this organization was founded in 1927. It’s a premier association of financial professionals, you know, they don’t say, premier Association for insurance agents. Now, it’s called as a premier association of financial professionals. And mdrt was also evolving to sound financial planning. So what happened is, the next thing I got into is I kept upgrading myself. So I remember there was a booth during the mdrt meeting. And if I’m not mistaken, it was in Los Angeles when they had the other conference. And when I went there, I saw a booth by American college, they were promoting ch FC, Chartered Financial consultant, which is a cause for financial planning professionals. So the minute I got into it, while I saw this is something that I need to take it up to add value in the lives of my clients, because I was only dealing with them on life insurance and risk management. So when I got into the course, at that point of time, Malaysia, they were not offering the course it was offered in Singapore Insurance Institute, and eventually Malaysian Insurance Institute, offered the cost and I was one of the pioneers who took the course, it was very costly at the point of time, it was not cheap. And for two and a half years, 13 modules. Wow, amazing. That was really exciting. We were doing something on retirement planning, you know, the, the tax books were like Bibles. You know, I mean, the case study is the tax laws for 01 k you I mean, it was so exciting. And when I took the course and I completed it, way back in 1998. I said, hey, look, Mike, I can’t be going on just selling life insurance to my client, I must be able to provide, hold your hands, walk through the financial journey, and provide a more holistic and comprehensive solution. So what Next, I started a financial planning practice with no knowledge of how a practice is conducted. The practice model here, no revenue model, nothing, no tools. Even the regulator’s in Malaysia are not sure what the license they were intending to offer. So I got into it. And my wife used to say, hey, look, yeah, you’ve been doing very well in the insurance business. He was selling good products. And why all this because I had a massive pickup. I had a massive pay cut because during the transition and getting into industry, which of course you will just say the steel and the infant stage. I always joke around well, you know why this industry is in Malaysia for the last 15 years. It’s like a 15 year old guy walking around like a child. Because you know why I mean end of the day financial planning is all about continuous education, upgrading, you know, that this this many things, you know, so. So I mean, I don’t want to say it’s still at the infant stage, because I think we have come a long way. And that’s how I got into from the mdrt platform I got evolve into a financial planner. And even now I’m very, very passionate about I think you interviewed one of my guys and I mean number of them in the industry. Even Rajan David arson spoke to me about these guys. I mean, I am very passionate about, you know, what I’m doing. And I am a believer. I mean, I’m a believer of financial planning. And financial planning is not about pushing products. You know, it’s about providing solutions. So that’s how I got into financial planning. You

 

Gwen Lazarito 

know, that’s wonderful. And it’s such a great story as well to share because so I want to do, or I wanted to hear your story, Roger, because right now, especially here in the Philippines, my husband is a financial advisor. And I’ve heard some of his friends are actually in struggling a bit with their practice because of the pandemic. Some of them were not able to pivot on time, with the times. And I guess that’s, I think that’s a very great story to share that. Sometimes it takes, you know, our The industry has come a long way. And there’s actually good, a lot better things to come in the future. But I guess so, most of most of my, my, the people I know, actually want to ask, like, How were you able to qualify for mdrt?

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

Yeah, no, I still remember grand way back in late 80s. I did a talk in Manila garden for the insurance company in Philippines. filum life? Yes. Yeah, I still remember the agency manager. I got in touch with her now. I mean, I remember delivering a talk there was a large number of insurance agents in the hall and, and I could see I mean, I’m very frank about it. The Filipinos, the filly I mean those in the insurance business of course, that’s I can only give my opinion of you about those in the insurance business great Chappell. Great people in the sense I mean, Jen, by naturally they are very people with very rich in hospitality, you know, very kind in, in, in interacting with people and they shower, anyone like us, we go there, they showers with a lot of, you know, very nice things to say. And so, I mean, these are attributes, one should have to succeed in the in the practice that we are in. Sometimes it’s just about how we perceive things you asked me during this pandemic, be very honest with you, I think we are doing much better in the advisory side of our practice. Because today, in view of this challenges people are confronted with they have to revisit their financial goals and objectives that they have defined and properly documented, or just thought of prior, it could be about retirement, they would have set their time horizons, it could have been about funding for the children’s education to send them abroad to study. So all this has been disrupted now in a very choppy situation that we are in. So this is the time, everyone has to start revisiting, revisiting their financial goals and objectives. They have to start revisiting their assets, their liabilities, cash flow, what I feel personally, I mean, it’s just that what we perceive, the level of belief that we have in what we do, is going to take us a long way. So qualifying for mdrt and all that, I believe at that point of time, it’s about product. It’s about my belief in the product, these products every home should have when there is a breadwinner. Every business when there is a key person while it is like playing Russian roulette where you are not. I mean you you are generating an income and you’re not protecting it. That’s crazy. Right? So So I believe that you know, they should they should be educated. They should be taught about the importance of getting health insurance, getting a income replacement product, carrying a critical illness funding product. They need to, you know, so we just go we just go into mission, we go into a mission and start preaching, that’s hard, and everything will fall in place the rest of it, I think the tools are there, you have to approach 15 people and five of them would like to listen to you probably probably one of them, you know, would be able to a Yeah, I think I should pick up this product. So all these the tools are all this I think the bottom line is it’s a belief, you know about what you are doing. And the value that you you’ll be able to provide in the in the lives of people. So for me to consistently qualify at that point in time was a belief and even now, in the financial planning practice, when and I mean, please allow me to blow our own trumpet. We have this Malaysian financial planner Year Award, which is organised by this company known as planned plus, and offered by Financial Planning Association of Malaysia, which promotes CFP here in Malaysia. And 2015, we participated in Malaysian financial planner year what we want one award 16, we didn’t participate 17 we participated and we won two awards, number two and number three, if I’m not mistaken, I think all that in the website, and then moved on to 2018, we won three awards, the first place, second place, third place all went to blueprint. And 2019, we want all the three awards, and 2021. We want to award I mean, 2020, we want to awards. So I was wondering, hey, there are so many financial planning firms in the country. But for us, I can only speak about our practice model. Our practice model is known as the p a p model. That is not the people’s Action Party of Singapore. But we PB first, it’s mandatory to write a financial plan, only then we dispense advice. Thereafter, we execute with products. So that’s what p p. So that’s our practice model. So again, it’s the belief system. That that I believe that I have this slogan. Now in most of my talks, you know, when I said every Malaysian or Asian home should have a financial blueprint. That’s the most important document. In every of my speeches, my opening is that that’s the most important document. And I qualify why I say that it’s the most important document because, you know, even when we were young, you know, our teachers, our parents, you know, our grandparents have told us if you have a goal, if you have an ambition, write it down, you have to write down what you want to achieve in your life. Likewise, a financial plan the first thing that we do is to the financial planner, sit with a client and work with him very closely. And start defining and documenting the financial goals and objectives of the person short term, mid term long term, it could be any goals for that matter, maybe buying a new car, upgrading a home, getting married, having a child vocation, wanting to give an holiday to the parents, you know, or setting up a charity all this is a very extensive and exciting interview when and I love this first part of the process of sitting down with a client and defining and establishing financial goals and objectives and that is documented in a financial plan and once we have done that we move on to listing out all the assets all the assets that the individual or the business owner has we start documenting it and some of them are crazy they can’t remember I mean even this oh yeah I remember investing in some stocks I remember investing in some mutual funds I 10 years ago, I remember buying a life insurance product what were all those and we sit down and virtually compile all this and and list these down and all assets are recorded. And then we move on to liabilities then we go into cash flows, we go into what he called doing a profile on the risk appetite, I could send this whole document you know we carry all this informations and the planners sits with the when it comes to onboarding the client sits with the client and get this all the whole thing done in a financial plan document. And can you imagine if something were to happen to the key person of the business or the breadwinner, this document becomes very handy, because every information is inside that. So that’s what I say when that this is the most important document in every home. So that’s the belief you know, I mean, and I always challenge any of my audience. I said Look, I mean yes. Oh yeah, I have this asset. Oh yeah. I think I have this mortgages to pay off. I think my cash flow is in surplus are not to worry, you know, but today, you know, in view of this pandemic that we are being faced with, you have to sit down and look at all these things, more so than before. So that’s what I keep saying a financial plan is the most important document in every home or business. Now, only then products come thing, products is just, I mean, the best analogy I could give you is it’s just prescription. I mean, you know, you see a doctor examines you and say, Look, Mike, you’re right, you have peace of mind. So when you write a financial plan, most likely, if everything is fine, and you see it in the document, you will have peace of mind, well, not to worry, everything is alright with me. And if there are any issues or concerns, then we can execute, we can help fix it with the help of our financial planner, but most of them you know, like in Malaysia, I can tell you, I mean, you I think you may have listeners, all over in Malaysia, when when I started off, when I say look, oh, I’m going to do this plan for you. And I’m going to charge you X number of fees and all that X amount of fees, they go crazy. They go away, I’m going to pay for this. Yeah, Pennywise pound foolish, I say, upon completion of the plan, when they would have seen Oh, wow, I’m saving so much. They have assets not been performing for years. When we get in, we fix all this we shuffle reorganized, do the balancing the switching and look at their health insurance, look at the, you know, their estate planning issues, wills, you know, you, if you die, intestate distribution of assets is going to be very challenging, you know, you have to seek lack of administration. So it’s basically the most important document in one financial journey, we are living in a material world. So of course, we are living in a spiritual world, and we don’t talk about money, that’s fine. But we are living in a material world. So the financial journey, once live is is everything. So so I could I mean, you could see, you know, when I, you know, in what I will be do believe what, whether you believe in this or not, and whether you can add value. And so to answer you, I’m sorry, I think I took a long time to give you an answer. That’s cool. Yeah, so it boils down to that. And then when you see the value in what you are doing, of course, you know, in terms of writing, when you say you’re a financial planner, the guy looks at you, oh, financial planner, I’ve got situations when for guys have insulted me in some networking meetings, I’m quite active in the Australian Malaysian councils and some other business councils. When we go for networking, I say I’m a financial planner. Wow. And then very, we know they they some of them even very bland, oh, these guys are all match, they say that. So we are not rated very highly. I mean, I’m I mean, I say but then we don’t have to bother about that. Because when you know you have certain value systems in you. And you mean, you can go into my website, check my testimony, some of these clients who came in to give testimonies, they came voluntarily to give testimonies, you know, because they know what we, we have. So to be a financial planner, I can see, you know, I mean, not only many parliament in Australia, I’ve met a lot of friends, you know, I mean, when it comes to financial planning, immediately, oh, it’s investments, now it’s just a product of its insurance, it’s a product, it’s a solution, but before you get to the level of solution, you have to walk through the process of getting a plan written, that’s the thing. So even in Philippines or any part of the world when that is what we should be talking to our clients, when we are onboarding them, when we are engaging them, you know, that this is the most important document in your financial journey, we have to be saying that, and we have to say that with a with full conviction, you know, so and you people will value it, I have a lot of I mean, I have the luxury now you know, of giving appointments two months from now or three weeks, three months from now because I don’t have the time. So some of them, they will just want to just engage me and some I just distribute to my other planners, but they prefer to engage me. So it’s, it’s interesting. So I mean, we we have to have that sense of conviction and believe that we mean a lot in the lives of people

 

Gwen Lazarito 

are that’s so true. And I do hear your passion for this. And I think that’s the best advice that we can provide to other financial planners or financial advisors who are, you know, struggling in this industry right now is just to believe in, in the integrity of our career of being a financial planner, and to believe that you are useful to your clients. I That’s, that’s such a good one because you are absolutely correct. a blueprint is something that is a must, I think it’s still the same as you know, if you’re going to build a house, house that has been well planned. And if that plan is well executed, then you will get a really great house as opposed to a house that was just built on a whim. There’ll be no direction, there would be no great foundation for that house, and it will crumble down as easily. Right? Yeah, I think that’s very powerful. But I guess, you mentioned that you’re very passionate about giving this message to your clients. But here, or I know that even in Malaysia, they’re still like, the majority of the population is still skeptical about financial planning. They, some of them, or especially here in the Philippines would say that financial planning is only for rich people. So how would you position yourself in, I guess, as a, how do you position your yourself to your client, that you are an integral part of their, to help them in their life,

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

I think the most important thing, grand is about reaching out to people, you know, and in getting this message across. So there are many ways of doing it. Of course, in the insurance business, we were all being thought of, or speculating about branding, about networking. And I believe in this, we have to allow people to know us, you know, only when people know us, they will like us, only when they like us, they will trust us. And when they trust us, everything happens. And you know, this thing, I will back to agree. I mean, disagree this because people are the same everywhere, whether it’s in Philippines, whether it’s in Malaysia, whether it’s in Africa, in Australia, UK, or developed countries, developing countries, whatever people are the same people are love, you know, it’s it’s, it’s a, it’s human, you know, when, when you are a human, you have those basic, you know, attributes, we all share a lot everything as a human in common. So when when we know that what we have is something of very prime importance in the lives of people, then you should allow people who know us, and know what we do and what value we can add India, in their lives. So how do you reach out to people? Well, if you have that belief that you know, you can move on, I mean, you can help others, then you have to do this, these were the tools come in execute, whatever ideas that we learn, we have to execute, you know, now, you know, we do a lot of social media marketing, you know, we make approaches in many ways and form so. So then we have to come up with an action plan and start executing what we have and share what we have for the people to benefit them. And this, tell them I’m going to, I’m going to be here to hold your hands and walk through the your financial journey. And because I have the credentials, I have the competence. I have the know how to take you through walk you through don’t DIY, don’t do it yourself. It doesn’t work. It doesn’t work. I guess

 

Gwen Lazarito 

that’s right, because a lot of financial planners seem to overlook that part, I guess, are not a lot of financial planners, but I guess a lot of financial planners who are still starting in the industry, seem to have overlooked that. But I guess another segue and it just came to my mind here and I think it’s an interesting question. Hopefully it is. But do you think Rajiv, that financial, do you think financial planners should have their own financial planners as well? Or should they be handling or do you think that they can handle their financial plans themselves?

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

You’re talking about financial planners, engaging another financial planner that yes, yes. Oh, yes. Yeah, you know, you’re a surgeon, you can conduct your own surgery, isn’t it? Yeah, you know, everyone we onboard as a financial planner in blueprint, the first thing we got to do is to look at their own financial plan. And I in in some situations, I get in and I make sure that the finance To plan is in perspective, and first help them out first, and they got to see the value first.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Yes, that’s so cool. And I think that’s very good to do when you’re starting out, especially if you’re having a new financial planner in your team is to make sure that they themselves see the value in what they’re doing as well. And to see another person in action, actually helping them with their own financial status and managing their finances, because then they get to see, I guess, to model what they can do for their clients. Right? So

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

yeah, yeah, when you see, I mean, as I as I’ve been in the industry for over three and a half decades, as you mentioned, I mean, even in the life insurance business, you know, I’ve seen guys who are in the business where they don’t hold sufficient life insurance protection, they don’t, I mean, it doesn’t work that way, you have to be a believer, in terms of you wanting to add value in the lives of people. So, I mean, we cannot take the role of just a service provider, or a product distributor, you know, because being a financial planner, it’s a very, very noble carrier, you know, you have to have very high level of passion and believe in it. So, therefore, you have to see the value is you have your family, you have your children, you have your own financial journey, first that has to be fixed with the expertise that the industry, so you engage, you basically engage someone to, you know, to help you out first, and then you see the value, then after you move, you will see a big sense of conviction in what you are doing, you know, because you are a believer, yes, yes. So I believe if at all, I want to give a message. Now I would say, look, if you when you are taking up this financial planning as a profession, first thing, first, get your financial planning perspective first, and then you look at your risk management, make sure that your health insurance is there and you know, your income replacement part of it in sequence it is there and your critical illness funding is there, then look at your investments, and see whether they are meeting your expectations in terms of funding your financial goals and objectives. And the next thing, of course, make sure that you know, you have set up a trust or a will or you get your estate planning advice in terms of how distribution is going to be done first. So it’s your life first, you just fix that. And once you’ve done that, and you get out there and onboard a client, well, you will be very real and very, very practical, and very sincere about what you’re doing. So so so I definitely agree to your comment on that. Yes, they should, they should engage another financial planner to look into the FS verse.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Ah, yes, thank you so much for answering that because it just came to me, while you were saying about, you know, like, no one can, DIY is a bad thing. So I was wondering, like, if that’s a bad thing, so I guess it would be appropriate for a financial planner to also hire someone else. Because I guess the thing there is, if you do it on your own, even if you have the knowledge and the tools, you’re still pretty much emotional because it’s your own money, right? And when someone else comes in to help you out, they would be more objective to to see the bigger picture of your own finances. And, and I guess that would really cement your belief about the nobility of your career, as you say. So thank you so much for that one.

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

I mean, just to add on here, I have numerous occasions, especially step one in the financial planning process that is establishing financial goals and objectives. When I get into onboarding a client and sit down and execute step one, talking to both the husband and wife, couple there are many times with very emotional about it, you know, when I have seen them in tears, talking about what they want to do in their life. Well, that’s the most exciting part of the interview. Among all the six steps. The rest is only you know, pretty straightforward, you know, collecting data, collecting data, you know, that’s pretty straightforward. But the first part of the financial planning process step one, establishing financial goals. I have situations. When I’ve heard about special children in a special child in a family, you know, and the siblings are all married and gone and parents are getting all these guys no more special child is 30 to 33 years old. Parents are very worried about Or who is going to take care of this of this guy and, and you ever sit down with a financial planner and go work and structure something out? That’s so so I mean, it’s very emotional. It’s it’s people, you know, it’s it’s about people, how you, you mean you what you can do, you know, in the lives of people. So, I mean that emotional thing. I mean, this is a challenge now, for people like us, you know, we have always been used to face to face interviews and discussions now doing it was zoom and virtually it’s a bit challenging, but then that is the most exciting part of the interview in the financial planning process, you know, where, and that is very fulfilling, very satisfying,

 

Gwen Lazarito 

you know, I agree, yes, I agree. I’m getting to see what the, how you can impact your clients life, because you have, like, I know that in that in your step one, you get to really understand your client’s situation. And then most often than not, there’s always a, there’s always a setback for them, right? Like, there’s always this part of their life that still needs fixing, or still needs fine tuning. And that’s where you can shine as a financial planner.

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

We, I mean, if we, financial planners, in any part of the world, you know, if you can walk into the lives of five families a month, or the next 12 months, if you can help 60 families, and end of the day, wow, you know, what an accomplishment, you feel damn good about yourself? Yeah, that’s in life, you know, and when you feel good about yourself, Grant, you will be prospering, you will be actually prospering because you feel good about yourself, you love yourself, you know, you know what you’re doing, you know, that is I am always grateful to mdrt I learned all this from all these great people, you know, in the mdrt platform. And of course, in many conferences, and you know, so we keep continuously keep upgrading ourselves, keep elevating our belief system and level. And then of course, the tools. keep upgrading. So, so So I mean, it’s the thing about helping people, you know, help, and the rest of it will fall in place. All right.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Well, thanks so much for you. I guess. That’s, you know, your message is something that a lot of financial planners, I think they already know this message, but it never hurts for them to hear it again. Because it’s important to really continuously share this message because it is important, especially now in this time and age where a lot of people are some people are struggling. But I think there’s an as you said, there’s really an opportunity in this moment to shine as financial planners because in this time of the pandemic, people actually need to go deep down and look at their, the fight their financial structure of their home, to see and find out where a financial planner can help. But I guess my last question for you before we would do and this conversation, Roger, is that what is what would be the best advice that you can give for upcoming financial advisors or financial planners?

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

I mean, the first thing first, great, I mean, we have we not to worry about probably some of these negative comments about the profession. I mean, in every profession you hear of this you know, you have great doctors, you have doctors who don’t, I mean abide by the ethics you know, will similarly any profession lawyers or any have there are great lawyers and great doctors, great professionals. So we don’t have to worry too much about all this negativity and all that, you know, what is important is, you know, what you have is has got great value, right in the financial journey of any individual or businesses. So we keep upgrading ourselves and just get into the mission, just get into the mission of serving. And once you keep doing that, and you have a number of satisfying clients and you know, become a trusted advisor, become a trusted adviser again, and don’t sell products because of very high margins. products is a prescription that falls later. So I am I if at all I want to just my humbling My opinion is, when you are a financial planner, don’t position yourself in terms of I’m going to push this product, I’m going to sell some investment products. I’m going to sell some insurance products, let it be there, it will happen because end of the day You need to treat the client you need to treat the client only way to treat it you can of course write a fantastic financial plan and of the day you got to execute with the product so leave the product at the later part the first part of your your role or the first thing that you got to be committed in doing is hey look I will walk you through a financial plan first let me sit down and establish these financial dreams aspirations and goals of you and then we will walk you through so you will definitely see gaps and the gaps are can only be fixed by products. So what I would want to say every financial planner out there just get this right first right and of course tell them you’re going to charge a fee for well I charge vivo the plan for end of the day this is a product I prescribe you get it from me yes you get it from my shelf my pharmacies you can pick it up from us but if you want to win get it elsewhere while you sign this declaration saying that you are getting this product that I prescribed go ahead so you the client will be able to see your your sincerity your commitment. So what I would like to say especially you know those who are fronting products first just keep it the front your financial plan first that’s the humble thing that I probably would like to share because I have seen benefits by doing that

 

Gwen Lazarito 

when definitely I agree and I think that it’s a it’s a better way of positioning yourself as a financial planner as well so thank you so much for that

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

one other thing when I would like to add you know since you have listeners from all over especially Australia and all that I must say the opportunity in ASEAN especially planners who are in Australia and UK and other parts of the world they are in practice for a long time they have a very efficient practice model and and tools and all that ASEAN is the place to get in now you know they can always if they want to explore any opportunities in ASEAN I mean Feel free to get in touch with me because countries like Indonesia I mean Malaysia Indonesia Vietnam wow I and Brunei these are countries I have traveled I’ve met people and the opportunities are massive and our friends our brothers you know in countries like Australia UK and other parts of the world they they are very advanced in the sense they started financial industries is very old so they have a lot of things to offer to this region you know when you know we are keen and interested excited about ASEAN feel free countries like Philippines well there’s a lot of opportunities basically in ASEAN and these things are not going to I mean the pandemic it has to time will definitely heal all this let’s let’s be more positive and everything will be oversold and we can be all be happy and you know we can mean a lot in the lives of people when that’s my parting message I could give you

 

Gwen Lazarito 

thanks so much thanks so wash roju but and I guess it’s a it’s a good way to end the show of course thank you all for coming into the show in the first place but where can people who are interested in speaking with you if they want to get to know you more? Where should they go?

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

I mean I can just say give my my personal number I’m okay with that I know it’s plus 6019334 or 5087 they can just WhatsApp me and you know we can start a community I mean relationship I’m alright with that. Plus 6019 double 345087 they can also visit my website BP planning comm.my and of course social media YouTube we have a number of things inside there so yeah, so they can reach out and I’m if they want to know anything about ASEAN especially I’ve done a massive research about what’s going on and what’s going to be the opportunities in the next coming five to seven years. I don’t mind sharing all this because we are in a business of sharing when you know, the more more you share, the more you’re going to benefit I’m a big fan, this is what mdrt taught me.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Definitely and that that is basically the essence of this podcast as well as to share what other financial planners has to say so that we all can jump into the positive evolution of financial advice. Thank you so much for coming I

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

congratulate you all you know x y advisory I mean, this is a great thing that you you are doing to the financial planning community. Yeah, I really appreciate because I did have the opportunity to listen to some of your broadcasts and it’s fantastic. fantastic ideas and tools you know, so keep up this good work and let’s all work together. So all the best Gwen.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

thank you so much Raju and to you And to blueprint group of companies as well I wish you all stay healthy and happy.

 

Raju K. Ramasamy 

Stay happy then you will be healthy. Thank you

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