When I go around the country doing IFA training what I notice is the dearth of women IFA. We have women fund managers and remember the youngest CEO is also a very inspiring women, but sadly we do not have enough women IFA. We have had a lot of top bankers, CEO of life insurance companies, etc. so lets have far more IFA.
Why do we need more women IFA? -Simply because women will open up to women far more easily. So, with more women investing, it would surely help if the adviser is also a woman.
If I were running an IFA business with Relationship Managers I would hire men and women of various age. Diversity is always useful while dealing with a diverse portfolio of clients. I would also have young women – below 25 as well as women in the 40+ age category catering to the seniors. In fact I would even hire a woman in her late 50s to cater to the retired people who might trust an older person – EVEN if she is 20 years younger to them! There should be a huge capacity creation effort which no mutual fund wants to do. Surprising? well that is what happens when you are growing at a brisk rate. The need to innovate is lost.
I will go to school teachers, nurses, counselors, ..where women do a great job. Creating IFA out of them is easy. I would ask them to sell only 3/4 products. Liquid fund, ultra short and short term bond fund, index fund and Pension funds. NOTHING ELSE. I do not think a teacher or nurse will ever ever do mis-selling knowingly. They just need some 1 weeks training. No rocket science..
The other advantage is the IFA profession is ideal for women who can choose to work for say 4-5 hours a day – and choose which areas she will travel and where she would not do. Such flexibility is not available in other jobs. So if a woman has a kid in 7th standard she can choose to work real hard for 3 years, and then dramatically slow down when the kid is in class 10. She can then start working hard again – such flexibility is not available in normal jobs.
What does it require? Well it requires a lot of initiative by people like NJ, Prudent etc. the only 2 people who believe that fresh IFA are available. Of course it has to be funded by people like AMFI or some Amc which thinks like a market leader. I would look to Nippon or Aditya Birla to do this. Smaller fund houses may not have the budgets and the bigger fund houses believe that they need not do such things.
Will it happen?
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