Celebrating our 15th Year in Business
Sunday saw us celebrating the start of our 15th year in business
Having served his 17-year ‘apprenticeship’ in various financial planning roles since 1989, in June 2006 Jerry attended his first MDRT conference in San Diego, California. It must be said that he was not expecting this experience to be as powerful and inspirational as it was, and it inspired him so much that he felt that in order to serve his clients in the best way possible he felt empowered to set up his own business; so on the 16th August 2006 Financial Planning Concepts was incorporated and Jerry started the challenge of forming and growing his business, primarily with forward-looking people who would appreciate the highly-personalised service that would become the hallmark of the company.
As if setting up a business was not a big-enough challenge in itself, 2008 saw the Global Financial Crisis which led to investments becoming extremely erratic and some clients very nervous, but Jerry hunkered down and kept the service and the business going throughout, looking after the needs of 55 families.
Fast forward to 2016 when we held a party to celebrate 10 years in business, attended by many of you, the team had changed. Jerry had been joined by his wife Donna; with a Doctorate in Education she was perfect for taking on the position of Director of Research and Strategic Development, Tracy had joined us as a Senior Administrator and Tyler was our Apprentice, straight out of school. At this point we were now looking after the planning needs of around 89 families and with the increase in staffing we focused on honing our service and helping even more clients.
We had another team member, Sarah, join us in 2018 and she is now our Client Relationship Coordinator; Tyler is still with us as our Technical Administrator and Tracy is our ever-reliable Office Manager.
In June 2016 Jerry attended another MDRT conference, this time in Vancouver where a conversation with a trusted colleague at the airport led to him being introduced to the ‘EPIC’ portfolio management system which many of our clients now enjoy. This unique system logically and scientifically monitors all the individual investment funds in a portfolio every month and, as well as identifying the best funds in which to invest, aims to control risk by highlighting those that should be sold, thus over time maximising profits and giving peace of mind.
Fast forward to 2020 and once again we are fighting a Global crisis, this time against Covid-19 which has ravaged economies the world over and initially sent the stock markets tumbling. Jerry and Donna continue to lead the company, which has continued to grow steadily through recommendations, and we now look after 141 families. We are extremely proud to say that we continued to offer our full service throughout lockdown, contacted potentially vulnerable clients to make sure that they were ok and did not furlough a single member of the team. Instead we relocated the team to their homes and made excellent use of technology for client and team meetings; Jerry in particular was pleasantly surprised how valuable video conferencing has proven to be and we intend to use this in future to improve our communications, especially with those families located further away.
Throughout our time in business we have been keen to support the community in which we live and have done so by making charitable donations to a number of groups including:
- The Hall for Cornwall – we supported the Hall for Cornwall many years ago and intend to start doing so again through corporate sponsorship when they reopen. Jerry will also apply for a grant from The MDRT Foundation to help towards the cost of the renovation project
- ROC – we made a number of corporate donations and Jerry also secured a grant for them from The MDRT Foundation towards the cost of a training tractor which would be used to help those with learning difficulties into employment on farms
- The Cornwall Air Ambulance – again we made a number of company donations and Jerry secured a $5,000 grant from The MDRT Foundation towards the cost of their new helicopter
- Drama Express – we made a donation to help enable young people with additional support needs to access the performing arts
- Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty – we became a business supporter of the CAONB because we believe it is very important to protect our local environment by looking after it appropriately and their work is key to this
- Kerdroya Labyrinth – we became a corporate sponsor because the project will create a fantastic piece of public art, and also equip apprentices with the skills to build Cornish stone hedging
A common theme across the above is education, as we firmly believe that the life chances of individuals can be improved through these kind of projects.
Thank you for all your support since 2006, and thank you for all the introductions to family, friends and colleagues in that time. We look forward to the next fifteen years where we will continue to be a hardworking people-focused firm, who serve our clients well, ensuring that your finances are in excellent order so that you can live the best life possible.