I first met Hansi more than 20 years ago, when she was a consultant at Mercer, and I worked at a funds management firm.
I was fascinated to read her blog about the Indian financial services industry, and its contrast to Australia.
Of course we know our industry is developed and world-class. Despite bad press in some areas of our industry, it is always an interesting exercise to look at what we have built, and celebrate its quality.
1. A superannuation system that people take for granted as they save for retirement.
Those entering the workforce today may not understand what their super is doing, but they take it for granted that they get it. Our challenge now is to engage people with their super savings so they can make an informed decision about the kind of retirement they want and actively work towards it.
2. A crowded and competitive funds management industry, with world-class brands.
The ability for an adviser or an individual to select a quality fund manager is not tough - there are many to choose from.
3. An advice business focus that is now truly on education and the long term viability of giving advice without commissions.
While we have yet to fully see the rising standards of education transform the industry, we are well on our way, and the next 20 years will see the industry focus more on education and connecting with clients on a long-term basis via a fee-for-service model.
When you read Hansi's blog around where the Indian market is at, you can see the next 20 years have many challenges for India to overcome. Her final question had me thinking – ‘what would we do if we had the forces at play that India does at the moment?’
It seems that the regulation that has turned our industry inside out is desperately needed there.
Equally, a nationwide education campaign on how to think like an investor is also required.
One thing I do know for sure is leaders in both India and Australia need to focus squarely on a 20 year vision for change. Short-termism is the enemy of excellence and always leaves it to the next generation to make it right.
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