OMG once upon a time (about 20 years ago) one had to go to a British Council or the USIS to get something on Financial Planning.

Today every body from a credit card salesman to a real estate agent everybody talks of financial planning. So it has become more and more difficult to understand FP.

Now I hear of ‘Life time financial planning’ and ‘Life Planning’….sometimes I wonder why Financial Planners want to run people’s lives!

The latest I heard was ‘holistic financial planning’…that got my goat and decided to do a post. (by the way the guy who said H…F…P… did not understand ‘got my goat’ so I guess it is tit for tat).

Alas, he did not understand what is Holistic Financial Planning either. I did not try to Google for Holistic Financial Planning either. Words like holistic, strategic, …etc in corporate India is normally used to fill up space – have seen too many CXOs use these words without much meaning.

Holistic health care is something which interests me – being largely aware of the environment, eating what is good, understanding your body. Understanding the consequences of a poor diet or exercise…now this affects your brain.

Now holistic financial planning means (I guess) the planner will understand all your financial needs, resources, your attitude towards money, your job, everything which affects your life, job, money, retirement, ….etc. and then give you advise.

Truthfully how many of us trust ANYBODY to share all this? and least of all your ‘financial planner’ – a little green shoot at that? well, well people can be damn ambitious, right?

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  1. Subra Sir,

    Your article reminds me a though i use to have when i just started earning. I always use to think HOTEL’s with Complex names are Good and Expensive. Especially the English Names “Hotel Elite”, etc…

    Regarding Financial Planning/planner- most who enters finance world to render service is designated as fianance planner or any other fancy designation like “Vice President, Finance Planning”…

    ALl that they know is repeat what their coroporate office or branch office has told…

    XYZ Plan is good. ABC Plan will double money. CCC plan is best plan. ask them why? You hear nothing from them

  2. Any industry uses lot of jargons to justify its existence. FP is no exception.

    “What is the use of planning? Whether the planning would automatically take care of all the financial goals? Well planning is the new flourishing industry and planners’ give nicely printed thick books as your life’s blue print. As a planner, we all would say plans are must. This is as good as an astrologer saying that astrology is must or a Sastrigal (Purohit) saying rituals are must. It’s typically akin to asking a barber whether you need a hair cut. Even if your bald headed, he would still suggest some trimming at any given time.

    A plan (oral or written one) is just a starting point to organize your financial life. A plan works on many assumptions. For example, in a plan I shared with you yesterday (done for a media house), there are assumptions regarding rate of inflation, how much a fixed income product would give in the long run, how much equities would give in the long run etc. These numbers are not random ones; still an assumption is only an assumption.”

    The above is part of what I wrote to my clients recently.

    Without using terms like HFP or LP, for last 2 years, I do not sign up any client unless they sit with me for 2 to 3 hours for a consultation and share with me the details you mentioned as HFP. There is no way for me to know if they share everything. Based on the relationship I’ve with clients and the information shared with me, I assume they fairly confide lot of things which they would not have otherwise spoken to anybody.

    I’ve lot of band width in terms of time, but in no hurry to grow aggressively. Our clients only come through referrals and I choose them as much they choose me.

    I do not know if I the model I follow can be extrapolated or scaled up. As of now, I’m comfortable and prefer to do things only this way. Let us see what happens in future.

    “Get your goat” would then mean “arouses your goat like side” or “brings out the beast in you.” (Courtsey: Google search)

  3. on the issue of impressive sounding words i have a little joke to share.
    these days people from mainly tier 2 towns/inner city come to us asking for “LASER” casearean. we did not understand what it means at first.
    later discoered that for them LASER surgery is one when absorbable sutures are put on the skin instead of removable ones.no point tring to convince them that such a surgery does not exist. now a days iam answering people whoever asks me the question that yes we also do the same laser cs.

  4. Subra sir,

    I would treat “holistic health care” with caution. Same things you said about HFP apply here also. Please stick to your family doctor.

  5. SIR,
    I HAVE READ MANY ARTICLES ON HOW TO INVEST OR PLAN FOR YOUR FINANCIAL REQUIREMENT IN FUTURE, ETC…BUT I FAIL TO FIND ANY ARTICLE ON HOW A SCHOOL TEACHER SHOULD PLAN FOR HIS FUTURE AND HIS CHILDERN’S FUTURE… COULD YOU PLS THROUGH SOME LIGHT ON HOW A TEACHER SHOULD DO HIS FINANCIAL PLANNING KEEPING IN MIND TODAY’S TREND IN TERMS OF SALARY, COACHING CLASSES, ETC…

    REGARDS

  6. Maybe they want to attract more clients or customers with a new word that not everybody would understand. Sounds good to the ear so they think it might work.

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