April 11, 2022

What a Financial Coach can offer clients with Jay Adrian Tolentino – Transcript

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Gwen Lazarito
Hey guys, welcome to another episode of the financial planners Southeast Asia podcast when here and today I am with one of my favorite guests in the podcast is Mr…. or should I say Kuya? Jay Adrian Tolentino, aka The Purpose Driven advisor. So Jay is an independent financial coach for Overseas Filipino workers that are based in Dubai, UAE. So he also hosts the bearer and purpose podcast. So again, welcome to the show, Jay. It’s the day

Jay Adrian Tolentino
Hey, sorry, I wish by the way, how are you going? I’m so glad doing this podcast. Yeah,

Gwen Lazarito
I love the energy. So for those who are curious kumusta is how are you? How are you? Yes, I’m doing great. So how are you doing?

Jay Adrian Tolentino
I’m doing great as well. The year has been what the opening of the year has been quite well, for me. I’m glad that there’s a new, there are lots of opportunities happening right now in the world or in the UAE to be very specific. Businesses are popping up here. And that’s another thing that I’m doing as well, in addition to financial coaching, yes. So really excited. I think this is a year, full of opportunities, or everyone in this part of the world. And I also think that if this side of the world grows, then the rest follows. So that is why I’m really happy to open this year with a lot tons and tons of optimism.

Gwen Lazarito
Yes, that’s true. And I heard about some businesses popping up from a podcast that you did with Sir Fitch really afford that. So if you guys want to check that out, go ahead and check Berra and purpose podcast by Jay Tolentino. But if you guys are new to the podcast, please go ahead and listen to the first podcast that I did with Jay. It’s, I’ll put it in the show notes for this podcast. And he talks about his journey in financial advice there. So go ahead and check that out. He has a great story to tell. And yeah, and he tells about his growth in the industry as well. But now let’s get down straight to the topic. Because I actually want to talk about financial coaching what a financial coach does and offers for clients. Now, as I mentioned, you, Jay, you’re a an independent financial coach. But before we dive into that, can you tell us the difference between financial coach, financial advisor and financial planner?

Jay Adrian Tolentino
That’s, that’s actually a great question. Because a lot of people are also asking me this. And men when I was starting, I was also confused about the differences of these three terms. And as you know, based on my story, I also became, I was part of, of, I worked as a financial planner or financial advisor in the UAE for quite some time. And after learning a lot of things, reading so many books, and I’ve decided to go with the coaching route. So actually, when you when we when you think about this globally, in global scale, they’re actually just two things, or two terms. It’s a financial coach, and financial planners slash advisor. They’re practically the same with just a few differences. So let’s start with the financial coach first. Well, financial coach is actually good for people who are just starting out in building their wealth, like those people who could not manage their finances. Well, they’re living paycheck to paycheck, they’re always buried in debt. They, they don’t know what to do with money, it’s totally disorganized. And that’s where financial coaches are actually good at and they are not practically regulated. Right now, okay. In this modern times are not as regulated as financial planners slash advisors. And majority of them are paid through fees only they are not paid in commissions or not, they are not since they are not regulated, they are not required or they are not advised are not allowed to sell investment products. Now in terms of their fees, it would really depend on the type of coach that you’re working with. So if you’re working with a new A new kind of coach or who’s just starting in his business or in the industry, then he might charge quite little to build his clientele. But if you’re working with a coach who’s done really so many things, and who has the credibility in the space or in the industry who’s been doing it for years, now, then there’s a chance that you might be paying for a higher price. So that would be it might depend, depending on the ATN vi procession kind of payment, or it can be bundled with different services as well like it, would it run for for a month for three months or for one year, that would depend on on your needs, or on on what the client wants. But then again, coaches mainly focus on helping the client build the habits and build the money habits, and until such time happens, that they are already well versed with the right, the right things to do with the money, how they should spend, they have clarity, with the needs versus once they have a purpose. They know why they’re spending, why they are spending on this particular thing, they know why they are saving as well, then that’s the time that you step, step it up and work with a financial planner. Now, financial planners, slash advisors can actually be can actually do the similar things that coaches can do. Yeah, and they work on all stages of your financial life. And but most of all, majority of the financial planners slash advisors, work with you in terms of investments and Future Planning. And the good thing with planners is that they are actually, they can design a bespoke or a personalized financial plan, depending on your need. Let’s say you need a state plan, and you’ve built your wealth over the years, and you want to minimize your taxes. So financial planners can actually do that if they are certified if they have the experience. And they also have the right team around that. Because usually, they also work with lawyers with accountants to achieve the desirable results of the clients. And usually they’re really more strategic than coaches because they you really drill down on the numbers as well. Yeah. So also, in terms of regulations, they are, they need to be regulated in the country they are based in. So for me, that’s a win since I’m in the UAE when I was working in, in the financial services industry, we are regulated in this part of the world, in the UAE, and in time regulated, I’m allowed to sell investment products and conduct financial sessions or financial planning sessions with the clients now, some qualifications that financial planners should have as well, or let’s say whereas in the Philippines it has, there has to be this

certification for RFP or register financial planners. But for me, globally speaking, I in addition to me having this certification, I want to have the certified financial planners qualification or the CFP that’s like the gold standard of financial planners and some other cases. Some has this CFA qualification, the Chartered Financial Analyst, because they are the ones who really are extremely good with numbers. And yeah, so the only difference with their different types of financial planners based on how they are paid. So this is where things can change. Okay. And I first learned about this when I when I read Tony Robbins book, I’m not sure if you’ve heard if you’re familiar with unshakable? Yeah, I actually have it here. Before we started this. I think I read this book, I think 2018 When I was new in the industry, because I heard that there are different types of advisors. So I learned it through this book. So here are different types of advisors or planners. Number one is there’s there are those who are fee only, okay, advisors that charge either by the hour or a percent of the assets that are managed, typically they charge around 1.01% on average. So if you have a huge number of assets, they charge based on their value. So if the value increases next year, then definitely they will still charge 1% On average, but of course, since it’s a percentage, it will increase as well. Now there are also financial planners that are commission based meaning they are regularly They they are certified. But what they are doing is they offer products to their clients based on the products that are offered by their companies, probably, they are working with a brokerage firm like for me here in the UAE, I work in a brokerage firm. So I had the access to all the different types of insurance and investment products that I can offer to clients. So that was how I was paid before I was a commission based advisor for for quite some time. And then there are those who are both a combination of the two, meaning there are advisors who charge for a flat fee, and also earns commissions on the investments that you buy. Globally speaking, those are the two qualifications of the financial people or professionals that you you should be working with when you are dealing with your personal finances. And yeah, that’s that’s the thing. And in the Philippines since I think in this particular segment of x y advisor podcast, we are dealing with many Asian or Filipino audience as well. So yeah, as I, as I understand in the Philippines, there can be three, three types of professionals you can deal with. Those are the coaches,

advisors and planners. So I categorize them based on my understanding, and based on my experience as well. So coaches are the same people that I’ve mentioned a while ago. Now that advisors for me are the ones who are practically financial salespeople. They are regulated by the Insurance Commission, commission or sec, but technically they are obliged to sell based on what they are trained for, or what their company has taught them. And the last one and the very rare reads of financial people would be the planners. And these are the people who are only fee only they are only charged for a fee. They are not offering any, if they they would not I mean, they might give financial products based on the requirements of the client, but they work with advisors, let’s say I know as an advisor for this particular need of yours in terms of insurance, but you do not buy it directly from me. So in terms of the financial planners, there’s only one there’s only one company that I know of. And that is the PFA personal finance advisors by coach Efrain Cruz, you’ve you’ve, you’ve heard him in the podcast before, right? So he’s the only person that I trust that I know, and who is truly with the call this fee only. And in my experience, they are also focusing on what the client’s interests are. But in the Philippines, unlike Australia and the UK where fiduciary standards is, is applicable, meaning when you say, Sherry, they are required by law to act in their clients best interest. Yes, but for us in terms of the financial service industry. We don’t have any fiduciary standards yet. And I think that’s one of the one of the things that I want to happen in the Philippines, because I even here in the UAE, they it’s not yet as fiduciary, as the UK and Australia. And majority of the sales are majority of the financial advisors, wealth planners, wealth managers, or you can name so many. Totally a lot but they just do they just do one thing they just sell financial products and earn Commission’s on them. Well, but let me just be clear, I’m not I’m not against people who are selling financial products, because I have met several advisers who are commission based but they’re there, they have a pure heart to help their clients. It’s just that for me, when I made when I encountered this terms, I really had to make my personal decision, which kind of path I would take because for me personally since I know how to invest and my principles in investing in revolves around low cost and simplified investing, when I was when I was in the industry, I could not come from I could not comprehend

the products that are being sold to the investors because I asked myself if I am the one being sold by this product will I do I understand it? We live by this? But since I learned how to invest by myself And how I know how low cost it can be and how profitable it can be in over the long term, then why would I sell this kind of product, right. And if you dig a little deeper, if you run the numbers, if you check, if you check the internet, you will find out that actively managed funds that are being sold by brokers by insurance companies actually do not perform well over time they are beaten by index funds 80% of actively managed funds fail to perform versus index funds over the long term. So having said that, having that knowledge, it was clear to me that I wouldn’t sell this, I wouldn’t sell a product that would not benefit my client over the long term. And that’s okay. I’m sure there are advisors in this program, who are probably paid with commissions are they probably paid by both fee only your Commission’s but it’s your choice. I mean, you have your own reasons. And it’s just that for me, I chose the fee only path. And I think those who are in commission based on commission based structured financial planners or advisors, it’s actually not me being against them, it’s just that they are, the trouble is that they work in a system that is beyond their control. It is a system that has tremendously powerful financial incentives to focus on maximizing profits, above all else that is actually a line in Tony Robbins book unshakable. And when I saw that line, I mean, and I had this conversation with Ira, one of the renowned financial literacy advocates in the Philippines. It’s what he said as well, the system is built the way it is we are incentivized to sell. And of course, being humans, we definitely, we also we also have to focus on on the food on our table, right? And since that’s what’s the industry has been built for several years already, then that’s how we are familiar with but again, if you for me, personally, I’d rather build my client it might be is the hardest path being a financial financial coach or being a coach and I feel planner here. But I think that is a better over the long term for me.

Gwen Lazarito
Yeah, and I do agree. And I can tell that you you that you are one of those people who have read unshakable because I remember, the one thing that I that got drilled in my head when I read about unshakable a few years ago was index funds. And so yeah,

Jay Adrian Tolentino
that ETF exchange traded funds, index funds. Oh, my God.

Gwen Lazarito
It’s not offered here in the Philippines. So

Jay Adrian Tolentino
there’s one yeah, there is one index fund in the Philippines. So there is one ETF that’s FM ETF. So that’s the only one that’s only.

Gwen Lazarito
So a lot of options. So if you are going to invest in ETFs, you have to have, like $1 account and invested in the US. But that’s actually very interesting. And I and I appreciate that. You mentioned, the thing about that. Most financial advisors here, especially here in the Philippines, are commission based and they’re incentivized to sell more. And that’s where financial advice are getting a bad rap at times in here in the Philippines.

Jay Adrian Tolentino
Are you familiar? Have you heard of this quote by Upton Sinclair, I’ve read this as well in shakable. And he mentioned there that it is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it. Meaning is he if he, if his main income, main source of income is based on him based on a person’s ignorance, then he’d rather not know it. Because if he knows if he starts to learn it, then he realized that probably as an as a, as a financial planner, who wants something best for the client, then I want them to make the profits over the long term. And if you if you do your own research, you understand you learn that people will, you will build wealth over the long term by simply doing the way by doing indexing investments. And that’s not what that’s not what your companies want you to do. They want you to sell their products because that’s how they make money and the more fees they offer, the better for you as an advisor. Horse, but also good for them as a business. And it’s one thing that also one thing I realized is that every financial planner is also a type of financial advisor. But every financial advisor is not necessarily a financial planner. Because financial planners can offer the same thing. But they, they they charge differently, or they do things differently than an advisor. So

Gwen Lazarito
yeah, so yeah, I think like, what you’ve been is a financial planner can be more rational in providing an advice to their clients, because the decisions that they make on the type of investments that they’re going to offer to their clients are not based on the fact that, hey, I’m going to get a commission if I refer them to invest in this right. So it’s more on. It’s really based on what the client needs. And yes, and that’s why we are doing all of these episodes to shake up the industry. So yes, and, and one of the main reasons why I wanted us to talk about financial coaching in this episode, because the Philippine financial advice industry is still at its infancy. And as much as possible, I would like financial advisors for Filipino financial advisors who are listening to this podcast to learn that there is a wide range of specialties that are out there that they can probably research more, right. So because you mentioned that when you read about this and unshakable, you did your research. So I hope that this episode will be a good resource for those financial advisors to learn about financial coaching. So exactly like, let’s help them out, like what can and can’t a financial coach do?

Jay Adrian Tolentino
Yeah. So like what I said while ago, financial coach is mainly focused on helping the client in building their wealth, meaning building, they’re still in the stage of organizing things, organizing what they want to spend on understanding really what the core purpose of, of financial planning or why they should organize their finances. Because if not, there’s really no way for them to build wealth, if, if their habits and mindset are not in line with their purpose. So for me, what I actually do is, I begin by asking the client the five why’s, what do you want to? Why do you want to fix your finances? And then why? Or why are you having this session with me right now? What is the main goal? What Why do you want to be out of debt? Why do you want to protect your income from risks? And ultimately, why? Why now? Why not tomorrow? Those are the questions that I asked. And then eventually, I asked clients like, these kinds of questions, they always end up by saying that I want to live life on my own terms. And they wouldn’t say they want to be happy, but majority of these people don’t understand what happiness is for them. And then when I ask these questions, then ultimately they realize that they want to have time freedom, and they want to use the money, doing the things that they really love. And that is why having this understanding of their main purpose gives them the awakening that hey, this is going to be this is a long journey for building wealth is going to be something that we’ll be doing for for life. But yeah, but since I know my why, then the how we’ll just follow along, like there’s a code saying that the deeper the way, the easier the how, right so because more many people, many people would many people understand their definition of prosperity like I want to have a big house, a big car, finish schools and all on travel the world. So many people would invest with try different things with their money, but few people understand why. And what Yeah, and I believe coaches should focus more on the why. Because the how and the what will just will just be the byproduct of a person’s why. And it’s very hard for a person to continue a certain plan. If they are the if if there is no clarity with your purpose. So I would just I would say that majority of my work, if I have clients is to really drill down on their why, why why why why why because it will help them stay the course. And like what happened, let’s say now that there’s a war of investments are affected in patient is shooting up. And also with a pandemic, they might sell their investments at a loss. Or they might, they don’t know their why, right? If they’re investing for the long term for the next 20 years, then by understanding that this is for my retirement, then I should just enjoy the ride. It’s part of, of my investment journey part of my part of what I’m doing right now. So it will give them peace of mind, versus those who just do the shortcut of okay, I want to make the best returns, like 10% returns. So I’ll put in the stock market, but they don’t know the timeframe, right. So let’s say they need the money in the next two years. So it won’t really be an effective plan for them. So that is why

in every session that I make, I make sure that there’s clarity as to why this person is doing it. If there’s if I always ask the client that okay, there will come a time that you will feel impatient, you will feel bored, and you will get lost on track. When that time happens, you can contact me or you can go back to this plan that we made. Go back to your why the first thing that you will read in here, this is why so that you will stay the course you will continue with your journey. So yeah, but for me since, again, what I mentioned a while ago, I’m based in the UAE. So technically, since I, I chose not to be part of the financial service industry, but I had this certifications of a financial planner. So I just make sure that there are certain disclaimers since I’m based here, but if I’m based in the Philippines, I can act both as a coach and as a financial planner. So that’s, that’s, that’s the only difference. And the the I think my advantage versus the others who are here to only sell products is that I both have the personal experience, I get scammed. I was in debt, I lost money in legitimate investments. And yes, I also have professional experience. I have the RFP certification. I have the Chartered Insurance Institute Award in financial planning and award in investment planning. When I was working in the industry, I made sure that I get all the certifications done not because I want to build a brand, but because I want to show people that I’m serious in in my craft. And until now, I make sure that although I’m no longer no longer in the industry, I keep myself updated every day by reading books by reading the latest trends even cryptocurrency blockchain a study Yes, as well, because I believe that is the future. And I think if you want to work with a coach or anyone on the planet, that is one thing that you have to find in that person, the character of that person that the hunger to learn is for me is that is that is a top priority. So those are the things that you are going to look at as well.

Gwen Lazarito
Yeah, and so very true, right? That. And especially with regards to money, you don’t want to to invest your time with someone who isn’t hungry to learn more, because let’s face it, finances, money, the economy, they’re all tied together. And it’s very volatile. So if you track the stock market every day, it would be like it’s red, and then it’s green, and then it’s red, and it’s green. But and as you said, you have to get back to your why. And sometimes that’s very difficult as an individual. And that’s where you need a coach to help you sort through your feelings and find the rationality around it, that this is how the economy works. And I can tell you for that, based on my professional qualifications, like I’m not just saying this to you as a friend. Yes, know what I’m doing. Because I was taught about this, I got my certifications. I took exams and whatnot. Right? So it’s very interesting to me that you mentioned that you are an RFP here in the Philippines, but you can practice it in UAE. You can only practice financial coaching. So as a financial coach in the UAE What can’t you do for overseas Filipinos?

Jay Adrian Tolentino
Yeah, well, I cannot give them space, I cannot manage their funds, definitely they give me they can’t like give me their logins or they can’t let me do the things that they want me to do. Because I, in the first place, I don’t want, I don’t want to do that. That is, there are other things that I love doing in life and financial coaching is, is very deeply embedded in me. But I still have curiosities that I want to explore. And I don’t want to deal with that, with the intricacies of managing other people’s funds. I want to give them the skills and the mindset of how to be a long term investor. But I don’t want to be I don’t want them to be dependent on other people. Because I always tell my clients that your money is your responsibility. At the end of the day, whatever happens to your money is your fault. You can’t blame the scammers because they’re they’re doing their job. They’re scamming people, that’s their job. It’s your fault to protect your money. And it’s your I’m sorry, it’s your responsibility to protect your money. And also, if you deal with coaches, you deal with planners, you also do your own research, because some of those people have their own intentions. Why are they giving you this advice? You have to ask them as well, right? And that is why even even mentors, even the mentors, I have even coach Efrain my mentor, I even asked him why this is why this is the advice that you’re giving me Why is this your practice? And then I even asked him Why are not investing in the stock market. But you are. You are you were a fund manager. And then he told me that my business is more profitable than the stock market. At first when I heard that I couldn’t understand it. But when I realized when I started meeting, so many business owners in the UAE, I soon realized that yes, business is also a type of investment, that if you know what you are doing, then you’ll definitely make more money out of it. So yeah, that those are my realisations here and what else when I was in the industry, since I’m commission based, and I also have this reservations, I think, in terms of selling actively managed funds, what I do to keep me afloat is to or what I did to keep me afloat, is to create another business I’ve opened or I’ve called I’ve co partnered or co founded a creative design company, which helped me at least sustain my day to day expenses, because again, if you are a fully commission based financial planner, and there will be a time that you will also feel financial pressure for yourself personally, you might encounter financial problems in the Philippines financial problems here because some clients may not pay you pay may not pay regularly, they might have their own financial problems that they wouldn’t need on a certain month. So Commission’s will be retracted will be sent back, it will be refunded from us. And my budgeting will be totally be a mess, as well. Yeah. So if if a financial planner advisors fully commission based and that happens to them, then they might be influenced to or they might be forced, by their circumstances, to offer products that give higher commission just for them to sustain their current standard of living. And for me, that is totally not acceptable. I don’t want to sell a product that has this, that will benefit not because it would benefit me but because I am pressured by a financial need to give this product to dislike even if he or she doesn’t need it. But because I have a need for an urgent financial matter. And that is why I’ve partnered with, with my friends to build a credit design company so that I’ll have another source of income. So I think if you’re really looking for someone to partner in helping you build your finances, one of probably one or a couple of additional requirements is that does that person understand business? Does he have another source of income because if this is the only source of income for himself or for herself, then there might be a time that the advice that this person is giving me can be biased biased because he has or she has this financial need to attend to at the time and it might my interest May May, probably secondary probably last because I’ve also met advisors who are in depth who are

who are who are their finances are a mess. And I said I don’t want to be surrounded by these kinds of advisors. You know? So you you when you You are in the industry, you definitely see all these things, although there are some that are doing really well. But there are still a lot of advisors who Hiles who have their own financial problems as well. And I think you are in the industry, you have to manage your financial matters first before you deal with your clients. Right. So yeah, I think

Gwen Lazarito
it’s, that’s true, because what’s interesting is, I spoke with a lot of financial planners in Malaysia, right. And I actually, I asked a couple of them, what does it take to be a financial planner in Malaysia? And one of the things that are required from them is that they have to have a good financial standing, like they have to maintain it every year because they renew their certification or their license every year. And that is something that I thought wouldn’t have been a good criteria for financial advisors here in the Philippines, because we don’t have that kind of criteria. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. So yeah, because I feel like we have to walk the walk and talk the talk. And so yeah, and something that we really need to work on in the industry right now. Which brings me to the question, what are the specific types of services that you can offer to clients as a, as a financial coach? Because I feel like even financial advisors can be your clients? Yeah.

Jay Adrian Tolentino
Yes, I had a client in the Philippines, who was a financial advisor as well, she’s just started a career. And as a coach, like what I mentioned a while ago, it’s mainly about being an accountability partner building a plan to get out of debt, to increase their income, how they can increase their side hustles. Those are some of the things that coaches should offer their clients, because again, their main problem is number one, most of them and many people in this modern times, still are struggling in increasing their increasing their income, because that should be one of the first the main focus initially, because you can only invest so much. If your income is limited, then how can you invest, right? So as a coach, you should offer opportunities or options for clients who need to increase their income. Like for me, I’ve built my network in the UAE, of business owners that if I met a certain client who requires or has a certain skill set, or let’s say, let’s say, as a makeup artist, I know people in the filmmaking industry, I know a friend, okay, and I refer her to, so that he can do it a side gig. And I always require my clients to have not just one additional, not just one source of income, they have to have at least two or more. Because again, you are our limitation investing is mainly limited by our income. So our income is our ultimate wealth, wealth building tool, as I’ve heard Dave Ramsey always talk about on this program. So that is, that is actually true, even I, I still find ways on how I can make additional sources of income for myself so that the path or the journey would be easier. Like for me, I’m not just doing coaching, I’m also, I’m also doing LinkedIn strategy, because I learned that along the way, when I was doing content I earned from that. I also have, I still have, I just recently shifted my, my career here in the UAE business setup. I’m a Business Development Manager for a business setup company. And the good thing there is I always speak to business owners. And that’s how I how I widen my network as well. And what else I also consultant for a startup company for their particular program, client acquisition program. Those are the things that I do on the side that I don’t always, I don’t usually tell people because, again, I just want to be focused more on social media as someone who helps people in organizing and making their financial matters much easier for them. And so but then again, on the side or on the background, we I still do a lot of things and I’m also paid by I’m also paid by some companies to conduct talks like like next week, I was offered by a developer to conduct a financial recession for your clients. So those are the things that I also do and that’s how I also help clients with my experience. I give them the give them some tips on how they They can actually leverage on the skills that they have, because their skills or their resources, they just don’t know it yet. But other people under other people need their skills for their business. And that’s how they can make money out of it. And again, what Tony, when I saw Tony Robbins here in Dubai, he said that money is not a problem. Tools are not a problem, people are not a problem. The problem is your resourcefulness. resourcefulness is the ultimate resource. And as a coach, you have to also teach your people to teach your clients how to be resourceful in this modern time. So the sort of things that I do for my coaching,

Gwen Lazarito
that’s true. I, so I have a mantra that I started, I think last year, it’s just do earn more, like you said, spend less, and then invest the difference. So that’s the thing that I always tried to remember myself, because let me tell you, all right, each and every person that I know, would rather stay, and Netflix and chill, right? I think everybody wants to do that. But if you have a goal, and if you like, if you know where you are heading, like it’s a, it’s a clear picture in your head, that picture in your head will enable you to stand up, turn off Netflix, and go be resourceful. And so, and I think that’s a good way to define what a coach is, right? So because you’re a financial coach, you are still a coach. So if you can get up by yourself, this coach will help you will motivate you to get up. And then try to help you find ways as you said that you can provide them with advice on how they can leverage on the skills that they already have. They don’t need to I’m sure like, everyone has a specific skill set that they’ve cultivated over the years, even if it’s like, do you have clients who are just fresh out of college, by the way?

Jay Adrian Tolentino
Yeah, I actually do this for free for four students. There was there’s one, she’s not on, per se than active client. I had a session with a with a client who I think he was 17 or 18 years old. Yeah, I think she’s 18. Because she, in the Philippines, it’s 18 right together, for her to qualify for life insurance, because she’s the breadwinner, yet she’s earning so much like 35,000 pesos as an 18 year old, doing online, things like digital marketing. Wow. She’s also she was also what he called a scholar for her xe infinity. She was making really good money when I when I coached her. And I told her that if you’re, if you’re the breadwinner, then the if you’re earning this much of income for this past few years, then you have to protect your income as well. So I recommended her getting at least if she since we talked about insurance. It’s about getting term life insurance, because it’s a form of insurance. And that gets the job done. So those are the things that I do. And also, I always make it clear for my clients to focus on the two skill sets that you need in life. Those are your professional skill sets, which will help you increase your income, like I was saying a while ago. And secondly, is your financial skill sets. Because a lot of people over the long years, would they eventually grow their income, right? Yes, so many of them still lose their money when they retire because they did not develop their financial skill sets. And, again, when you talk about financial skill sets, it’s not just about earning, that’s just one. So you earn it, you you save it, you spend it, you invest it, you’re protected. So those and then then the last skill is you give it away. I mean, for me, those are the things you could do with your money, right? So many people are so good in increasing their income, right? And many people are so good in spending unconsciously. And many people know how to borrow money. But very few people understand or know the importance of protecting it through risk management and growing it through investing. And that’s how financial coaching financial coaches with the right qualifications can help you out because like what I said a while ago, coaches can be Just the basic can teach you the basic ones, like how you increase your income or what. But there are coaches who has the skill set and the mindset and the heart of a financial planner that get you all these results. So that’s how you that’s how I usually help my clients through the services that I give.

Gwen Lazarito
Right? And so, because we’re talking about those things that you offer, like, how do you make a living out of being a financial coach? Well, you mentioned that you are you don’t get commissions, you are not salary based. So you are a fees only financial coach now. And you also mentioned that you have like other things going on to help you earn more. But as a financial coach, if you don’t have clients, like in this week, you don’t have a client. How else do you earn money?

Jay Adrian Tolentino
Yeah, that’s a really good question. Because sustainability is always part of the equation when you’re talking about coaching, and all right, because for me, I it’s there’s really a fine line between this as an advocacy and as a business. And if I want this advocacy to be sustained, then I need a business to sustain it. But at the same time, I also want it to be a business so that I can do this for the longer term, right. And for financial coaches, there’s the only way to really sustain it is to have more clients, more coaching sessions, regular, let’s say, there can be new coach, new clients, and then retaining clients like next year will be another session to see what happened for the year or sessions like quarterly, semi annually, or annual coaching sessions just to keep you afloat. Or you can also they’re all there are also coaches who go to different companies to offer financial wellness programs for their employees, because there are because definitely, many employees, right now, many millennial employees are stressed with their job, they they’re stuck in a job that they don’t like. But they are forced, because number one, they have to pay the bills, and they’re probably in debt, most of them are in debt. And they don’t really know how to manage their finances. And the value proposition for this for employers is that if a person can manage their finances well, and by the way, this is research based, I think this is a research by PwC that many people are stressed with their jobs because of financial reasons, productivity, productivity is hampered absenteeism increases. And then a lot, lots of complaints happen, or many employees are unsatisfied with work, because they think about their financial problems, the money, that the money that they need to send back home, or the bills they have to pay, affect their mindset, their mentality, their capacity to work. And because of that, your profits can ultimately decline because you have unhappy, unhappy employees. And that is why in so many of those employees would ask for a raise. And it’s not actually most sometimes it’s not the salary. That is that’s the it’s not their salary, that’s their, that’s the problem. The real problem is how they manage their salary. And if employers would understand this, then they would see the value of financial wellness programs, then yeah, they can work with financial coaches to, to conduct one on one sessions for for their employees, so that it can be part of their engagement employee engagement program for their, by their human resource management or professionals. That’s how I can see when the last. One other thing that financial coaches can make money is through for speaking engagement, regular speaking engagements with corporations, organizations, or communities or if you have a book, you can sell it, right, because

Gwen Lazarito
I think that’s one of the things that I really like to someone point out is that you can actually make a book this was mentioned by Clayton Daniel on a podcast that we had a while ago, is that you can actually make a book and this will help you like solidify yes and build credibility because having a book Well, aside from you know, bragging rights, it’s one of the things that when people see that who you’re an author, it automatically it automatically places you on top of Have other professionals in the same field as you? So yes, thank you for bringing

Jay Adrian Tolentino
that is my that is in my bucket these as well. I’ve also read that, yeah, instead of giving a business card, give them a book, that would totally change your Yes,

Gwen Lazarito
I remember either reading or like hearing that from someone else as well. And that’s, I think, true because and it has worked for a lot of financial advisors in Australia that I know who wrote a book. And then they actually use that as leverage in order to get their foot in the door, to conduct seminars, in businesses, get to like, screen time on TV, etc, etc.

Jay Adrian Tolentino
And one other thing, you mean, I in this modern times, coaches should have online should put out content online, because that’s how they build their credibility. In LinkedIn, I’m quite active in LinkedIn, there’s many of my paying clients are in LinkedIn, they’re not on Facebook. And there’s one time when there’s one person who booked a session with me, because he saw me on LinkedIn. And he said that the video that he saw on my page was, though, was the defining factor for me, for him to get a session with me. So LinkedIn, also, you have to take it seriously, if you want to have a coaching business, because that’s how people are perceived. It’s like your resume for them. I mean, LinkedIn these days are not just used to find jobs. Hey, to be honest, I never found any job in LinkedIn. But I, there’s business in LinkedIn, there’s money in LinkedIn, definitely. And one other thing is to have a podcast or probably a blog, or what anything that you’re comfortable with. So for me, I found my, my comfort zone, at least in in creating a podcast. So that’s how I, I, when the pandemic hit, I started a podcast for myself, personally. And then I grew my network of different financial advisors in the Philippines, which also helped me became more become more credible. And like the person if I may say, in this industry in this in the UAE, as an Overseas Filipino, as well. And that also gave me an opportunity to meet more people meet more clients, and then giving speaking engagements. And even I think it’s also one of the reasons why I got the chance to speak in Congress in the in the in the Philippines. Yes, I saw that. Yeah. So I mean, putting out content is a mandatory thing for people who are doing coaching or doing financial planning, it’s a must it’s like a type of marketing activity that you need. It’s low cost, it’s Bootstrap. You just have to invest time. And again, like what I said a while ago, this skill set that I learned content creation, I also make money out of it by helping other people create their own content, because I’ve done it I’ve, I’ve been, I would say it’s quite successful, but not as successful as other content creators that I know. But to me, it gave me the results that I didn’t expect that I thought I was just here to. The reason I had this podcast was to just record the conversations and share it with the audience. That’s it. I didn’t expect anything else. I didn’t expect any clients other than, but I realized that yeah, it’s it can be an additional source of income for some, some companies who want to be in the podcast to sponsor for a certain season or certain episodes. So yeah. That’s my mantra for the last two years is, it’s like to monetize everything. I mean, anything and everything. So that’s true,

Gwen Lazarito
because actually, I heard I learned about you through your podcast, right? I remember Googling, finance, Filipinos, and your podcast was one of the search results. And I listened to it. And this is an interesting person, and I Googled you. And I found your LinkedIn and after I connected with you, so that’s one of the I really do. Yeah. So I’m actually a very big believer that financial planners, financial advisors should have their own podcast as well. And also, definitely hands down. LinkedIn, social media, one of the best ways for you to leverage yourself to get your message out there, and to provide a reason why clients should reach out to you. And we had this great conversation with one of the financial planners who are doing great in LinkedIn as well. Her name is Vivian Chen. We have a podcast as well. Talking about like how it’s, it’s actually done. difficulty. I don’t know if you find it difficult J. But for some advisors or some people in general, it’s hard to post in, in LinkedIn, but it’s actually very profitable. And you just have to have the conscious effort to do it on a regular basis. So, and that’s why I remember now, the thing that I wanted to ask you, because you’re actually doing such a great job in Thank you posting in all of your social media, right? Especially in LinkedIn, I always see your posts you’re very articulate and what each podcast is, whenever you have something new that’s going on with you professionally, I remember you recently did a or attended of boot strapping like business seminar, right? Yes, yes. And you are very consistent and posting that. And I feel like if I’m a regular person who would who just sees that in LinkedIn as a, hey, this guy’s really serious about, about learning and continuously learning about finance. And that’s, I think, one of the, like, gold mines that some financial advisors haven’t tapped yet, but they should now and one of the things that can help you find clients as a financial coach, so I want to talk about that. But before that, I just want to ask, how do you actually become a financial coach? Like, is there a specific certification that you need to go through a program that need to attend,

Jay Adrian Tolentino
you can be a coach, if you have the results that the people need, right? And not necessarily certifications is not really required, because there are so many coaches in the world, right. And that, in order for a person to be the coach to be a coach is to deliver the results that people need. So basically, this means that the the entry level, the barrier to entry is very low, right? You just have to be that person who had the results. And, you know, for you know, if you had the results, if you tried it for yourself, right, for me, I really, I mean, the losses that I made, for the last five, six years that I’ve been doing this or being an advocate of financial literacy has been more, I’ve encountered more losses than successes. And that is why when I, when I coach people about their next step in their finances, I immediately tell them that this is what’s going to happen to you, I’ve encountered this, I’ve encountered these kinds of people that you’re gonna talk to in the next few months, or years or what, and here are the results, because I got it documented. That is why you need to document your life journey, right? Okay, this was me three years ago, this is what I was doing. And I’m not just I read, right, sorry,

Gwen Lazarito
I remember that your previous self was you were a spender. In your past life, it was very like shoes,

Jay Adrian Tolentino
I buy shoes for a living. Just to impress other people I don’t like right in the office, for me to feel that I’m much better than them. That was my life. And I got it documented on Facebook. So I show that to my clients, I even when I do my talk, I even show them how I lived in a tent in the UAE just to save money. And I did part time work, I did construction work, at least. And I also did as I claim a clean a yacht engine room to make money. Wow, I got it documented, I have a picture of it. I I mean, I’ve done those things to tell people that these are the things that I’ve done in the past, you can do it if you want to. And these are the experiences that I that I that, that that I saw, and the results that I encountered, but my results can be different from you. But a person who is who has done this, this can happen to you as well. I mean, coaches don’t have to be 10 steps ahead of the person that they’re coaching, they just have to be one or two steps ahead to be a coach. But definitely, if you want to be if you’re really serious in this kind of industry, you have to do your part. You have to learn, you have to be always hungry for learning, like what you see in the background, like there are so many books here, they’re not really required. But if you really want to be different from the rest, then you have to do the extra work. And also you have to always keep on building your network because your network will eventually become your net worth and your net worth in my network or the network that I also share to my clients. So it’s like an added value to them that if they gain access to me, then they also gain access to my network. It’s like a free pass. It’s like a shortcut for them. But eventually they still need to do the work. They have to build relationships with them. But I can open the gates For them, if since you give in your trust to me, then I give my trust to you as well as as your as your coach. So yeah, those are the things that I mean, being a coach, being a coach is not that hard, initially. But if you really want to do this for the long term, and again, you need to understand why you’re doing it for the long term, right? Yeah, definitely. It’s not worth the money. That’s for sure. And if you are, if it’s something that you want to try, then yeah, you can look back at your experiences at your mistakes, financial mistakes in the past, and see how you overcame that. Let’s say you were buried in debt. I know someone who was buried in debt for like 600,000 dirhams. That’s more than 10 million pesos. I think she got through it, then she became debt coach, because she, she overcame that problem, and then start from there. Okay, in the next like, for me, I I think I doing I mean, for coaching that and scam, I don’t charge people for that, because they’re already in in that grave problem. So why would I charge them? Right? I just tell them that the, the your mode of payment is you overcoming your debt. That is the only way you’re going to pay me back. And that’s how I that’s how I practice that particular thing. So like, for me, I got scammed, I help people how they get or how they, how they spot stop scams or not. Or have made them sure that they won’t be scammed again, or how they would teach other people as well. So yeah, it’s, it would really boil down on your personal experience at first, and then eventually, you have to grow professionally as a coach, learn how to coach people, the right way watching people, I’m still learning. And I’m sure a lot of there’s a lot of things that I need to learn because, like for this episode, I talked so much, right. So it can be also be a problem.

Gwen Lazarito
I think I liked what you said that you’re still learning how to coach people as well. So I guess because a financial coach isn’t also just someone who knows the ways to get better at money, they also need to be someone who actually knows how to coach people as well. And that is a journey in itself. Right. And I just realized that right now, like not everyone can become a financial coach right away. Because you also have to have the skills to translate the things that you’ve learned over the course of your experiences, to in a way that can positively help someone else. Because coaches, I feel like coaches know how to communicate a certain idea to another person in a way that that person can consume it, and then apply it. Yeah, because they

Jay Adrian Tolentino
learned that, yeah, because how you turn a complex subject to a simple one takes time, that’s one of my problems as well in the past, the other person would not easily understand. So you have to learn how to make analogies and comparisons so that people can easily understand what you’re saying. And the other thing than being a coach is just don’t focus on the money aspect of life. Like for me, I focus on the four areas. Of course, my four F’s, as I always say, finances, family, faith, and fitness. So those to be truly wealthy, you don’t just focus on money, you have to touch all those four areas of life. And that’s how coaching can help people live a balanced life at least or a harmonious life, not just financially because all these things financially wealthy, being fit, physically healthy. And having great relationships are just a byproduct of the things that you are learning on a day to day basis. So, I mean, financial coaches are like, are somewhat similar to life coaches, if you dig a little deeper, deeper, again, it’s a different thing that I that I don’t do yet, but probably sometime in the future. I don’t feel like being a life coach. I just want to focus on finance, finances, anything and everything in life is affected by finance. So that is why I want to touch on that subject more than yes, but definitely they are interrelated.

Gwen Lazarito
Right. So yes, and I think As a financial coach, as you said, is a great way to help people. But it’s not for everyone. But it’s something that a lot of financial advisors, especially in the Philippines can really look into if they are very serious and passionate about really helping their existing clients or other people, especially on matters that they’ve already gone through. So like for you, you’ve already been scammed, you were in debt. For me, personally, I actually love budgeting. So I can be a budgeting coach, yes, a financial coach that you

Jay Adrian Tolentino
can start definitely with budgeting. That’s how I that’s how I started as well. I did envelope budgeting for myself, I had physical envelopes,

Gwen Lazarito
it gave me the results that when I was 18,

Jay Adrian Tolentino
you’re an expert already, you can do coaching as well for budgeting. Yeah, you can start with that, definitely. And I did, I tried different types of budgeting different apps, different Excel sheets. So you can start with that. Definitely, I think that’s the starting point of every coach budgeting, or getting out of debt or managing finances. That’s, that’s, that’s the first step for many. But for the rest to those who are really serious enough, they would go with investing as well.

Gwen Lazarito
Yes, some of the friends that I know are actually financial advisors who are really good at investing like they were traders before they became financial advisors. So those are some of the people who if they’re very serious about helping other people can really start and hone in on that their expertise. And if you want to be a financial coach, but you feel like you don’t have those expertise, you can just go ahead and as you mentioned, dig inside yourself, find out like all of the financial mistakes that you’ve already done, and see how you were able to overcome those and become better, and translate that into a coaching business. And that can be on top of whatever it is that you’re already doing right now. So I really love that advice from you, Jay. So I don’t want to take up too much of your time. We’ve been, I know that there are a lot of things that we can talk about with regards to the subject, but maybe a podcast for another time. But for now, what is your advice for all those for our listeners who are interested in becoming a financial

Jay Adrian Tolentino
coach? Yeah. So if you want to want to be a financial coach, again, you start with your experience, your personal experiences, and you look for a pain point that you really want to solve, what is that thing that keeps you keeps you sleep at night? And what why do you want to do it? Why do you want to solve that problem really, so bad, you can start with that. And to me, when I encountered so many financial problems five or six years ago, that’s, that’s when I realized that, hey, this is not just encountered by me. It’s not just my it’s not just a problem that I’m facing. It’s also being faced by or being experienced by so many overseas Filipinos, then I told myself that probably I should focus I should try. I was just curious. At the time, I wasn’t really sure it wasn’t a plan to be a. I mean, I never even planned to be part of a financial service industry was never not good in mathematics I’m bad at. There’s just I mean, I then realized that money success in money is mainly behavioral and not analytical. So I brushed it off, and then focus more on improving my behavior personally. And then when I somewhat mastered my spending habits, how I should see needs versus once and spending with intention. And I started to master that. And I saw the results. And unfortunately, I was still ignorant and greedy in terms of investments. So I lost money from that. And that’s another thing that I had to learn. So again, you start with one thing, one thing that’s really challenging you that you really want to solve for yourself. And then when you see the results, try to see if it’s also a problem of other people. And then when you see that there is a possibility that you can help. It’s always about the heart of being a servant. For me, I really want to succeed in this you have to really serve more people. And you started to eat try it with yourself first and then you once you see the results, you try it with other people with some few friends started with my flatmates and then my office mates and they said you’re good at this. Maybe I should try it and then I read Purpose Driven Life Book of requiring that Just yes, yeah to give me clarity. Then, after three months I resigned, shifted my career, of course, with some money in the bank saved. I used that to as my like, it’s my capital for this industry and all and everything was history. So it just started curiosity. Definitely, with the pain point that I want to solve for myself. And from there just snowballed.

Gwen Lazarito
Yeah, yeah. And now you’re you’re one of the like leading financial coaches.

Jay Adrian Tolentino
You should expand your network.

Gwen Lazarito
I saw you in Congress. So I know you’re good. But yes, so thank you so much, Jay. One of the things that I really want to promote here in the podcast is to provide a better like an avenue for great conversations to start. And I hope that the listeners that are out there would start a conversation around, Hey, maybe I want to be a financial coach. So again, thank you so much for diving into this topic with me. So before we formally end the show, if if there are listeners out there who want to become a financial coach, but would like your, your two cents, or your advice, your personal advice, or if there are people who want to take you as a financial coach, where can they find you or reach you?

Jay Adrian Tolentino
Yeah, so they can find me on LinkedIn. Full name is Jay Adrian Tolentino here, you can easily search me or search for my name. And if you want to see the conversations I had with much experts, with much more experts in the field of financial, personal finance and financial independence, you can go to my you can visit my Spotify podcast, which is paradise purpose podcast, you can just type piano and then would immediately pop pop out there, it’s easy. You can easily find it. I have a website, but I’m still trying to build a course for for people to have to because here’s what I realized I cannot. I cannot serve more people. If I’m trading my time. Yeah, we sing every now and then. So I’m planning to build a course so that the things that I’m teaching can be done can be accessed 24/7 or anytime, anywhere by people and I don’t want to charge that course for for a very high price. Make sure that it’s less than 1000 pesos for you to build your at least help you organize your finances and all. So yeah, I’m still building that course. I, I might plan to launch it next month, or in the next month or two. But almost there out. Yeah, I still have a I have the outline already. I have a team who helps me for this. And I it’s a project that I also want to do in addition to having a book. So yeah, those are the those are the things that are coming up for me in the next few months. So yeah, you can support the advocacy as well.

Gwen Lazarito
Oh, definitely. So I I love that you’re really really good at hitting all your goals. I remember that we were talking about this last year that you’re you were still the idea was still in its infancy are still planning to do it. So I’m glad to hear that it’s in the works. Can’t wait to see what it looks like and I’m sure a lot of people will find it very useful and looking forward to your book as well. So again, thank you so much for the in the podcast as usual. It’s been a pleasure speaking with you. Have a good one. You too. Take care.

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