It’s easy for a large organisation to say that they invest in their people. But it’s much harder to actually do so in a meaningful way and to create a tangible culture in which everybody knows that they are valued and has access to the opportunities that they need to excel.
At Progeny, we’re committed to helping our team members to develop and progress along a career path. But, as I’ve said, expressing that commitment is one thing, making it a reality is quite another.
Which is why I am particularly proud of and excited about the launch of our new Adviser Academy. As the name suggests, it’s a vehicle by which our junior team members can achieve qualifications, become regulated and in due course gain Chartered status as well. But it’s also much more than that.
In creating the Academy, we’ve put our money where our mouth is and designed something unique which gives our young talent everything they need to become the very best financial planners and thought leaders of tomorrow.
Born out of a belief…
I’ve long held the view that we have some great talent amongst our more junior members, who have the potential to excel if they’re given the right help and the right opportunities. Progeny is very much about ‘tomorrow’ and the long term, and it makes infinite sense to nurture that talent.
This threw up an obvious challenge for us: in addition to qualifications, what do our younger team members need from us that will enable them to develop and grow into the very best they can be?
It’s definitely not all about number crunching
As the Academy started to take shape as an idea, we quickly realised that our junior team members need exposure to a whole range of skills and experiences that they just wouldn’t normally get, including everything from soft skills to practical skills like networking.
This meant we had to devise a thorough and structured programme that gave them the chance to develop their financial understanding, their communication and presentation skills. But it was also essential to us to ensure that they develop an ability to empathise and relate to our individual clients and their goals. This in turn meant that we needed to ensure that they have the opportunity to work closely with senior team members and clients on a range of diverse projects.
In short, we wanted to make sure that we gave them a chance to develop a deeper level of understanding of how the financial planning profession works and fine tune their informed but intuitive ability to see beyond the immediate and the obvious and to really get under the hood of every client’s individual issues.
The Adviser Academy has been developed to address all these requirements and more. With mentoring and a carefully structured approach, those on the programme will have a unique chance to learn a whole raft of skills and gain meaningful experience from the best.
The result, we believe, will be a new team developing through the ranks who have experience, expertise and intuition, and who can provide a seamless transition at the top when the time comes. It’s an exciting time and something we can be proud of.
“But at Progeny, it really is different. The senior leadership are proactive, forward-looking and deliver on their promises. Keeping up with the pace can be challenging at times, but it’s exciting too and it’s quite clear that they believe in their young people and are prepared to invest both time and money in us.
“The way the programme has been developed means that I now have some great learning opportunities and a real chance to absorb and learn things from those at the top of their game. I feel very excited about my future here”.
“Since before I joined the industry, my plan has always been to become a Chartered Financial Planner, but I was very aware that it’s not always easy to progress. However, the atmosphere and culture here at Progeny is different to anywhere I’ve ever worked before. There’s a common belief and goal that we can and should make a difference to people’s lives. That in itself makes you feel like you’re part of something special. Progeny feels like a breath of fresh air in our industry and I genuinely feel that what we are doing is remarkable and unique. As a result, I’m enjoying every minute of working here.
“The Academy represents an amazing opportunity for me that I just wouldn’t have had elsewhere and it’s enabling me to develop myself. Those involved with the programme give up a lot of their time to help us, and I’m already beginning to develop an ability to look at different financial plans and situations with a deeper level of understanding and insight. It’s also helping me to understand the more commercial side of the business, which I hadn’t been exposed to previously”.
As our first two Academy members get started, I personally think it makes Progeny a great place to work and a great team to work with. I’m looking forward to seeing them progress through the programme, although it’s certainly going to mean a lot of hard work for everyone involved.
But as senior team members, if we can continually develop our team members and help them to become the best that they can be, it gives us a unique chance to leave our own legacy. And that, in itself, is a privilege.