The Post: Managing Director, Chartered Financial Planner and Pension Transfer Specialist, Insight. Out Financial
The Post Holder: Jayne Gibson
Jayne Gibson’s previous career as a nurse taught her the empathy and understanding she now applies in her role as financial planner.
Give a brief outline of your career to date.
Initially I trained to be a nurse and pursued this career for eight years before changing track. My career change came when I moved to Northern Ireland, and as a single mum, I needed to find a job that didn’t involve shifts. I joined a small financial advisory business in Dunmurry, working in admin, and within two years, I was a qualified financial advisor within the company.
I have a MSc with distinction in Financial Planning and Business Management. I’m FPC qualified and I’m currently half way through a PhD. I’m also a Fellow of the Personal Finance Society and of the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment.
What was your favourite subject at school?
Unsurprisingly it was Maths. I’m a problem solver at heart and always enjoyed the challenge of equations and algebra.
Did you go on to further/ higher education, if so what did you study and where?
Yes, I studied Nursing in Liverpool and in 2012, I was awarded a Masters in Financial Planning and Business Management with the Manchester Metropolitan University, which is where I’m also completing my PhD.
How did you get into your area of work?
By chance. A new start in Northern Ireland, and a job in a small financial planning company opened my eyes to the world of financial planning and how it can make a major impact on a person’s quality of life. Within two years, I was fully qualified.
As financial planners, we take the most complex of situations and through our knowledge of the industry, give clients options. We can help to create pathways for clients to achieve their life goals, and that’s extremely rewarding.
Is this what you always wanted to do?
No, but a common theme through-out my career is that I gain a lot from helping others – whether that be through nursing care or financial planning. In each of my roles, they have enabled me to help others to improve the quality of their lives, and this is what drives me to do the best job possible every day.
Were there any particular essential qualifications or experience needed?
Yes, it’s important to be fully qualified and have a level 4 qualification from the Personal Finance Society, or one of the other accredited bodies. Our industry is tightly regulated therefore qualifications are essential, and ongoing CPD is a requirement for financial planners. Not an ‘essential qualification’ but having high ethical standards and a solid work ethic are also fundamental.
Are there alternative routes into the Job?
A number of universities across the UK now offer Financial Services degrees, and there has been a lot of development in apprenticeships and developing other routes for young people to build a career.
Similar to the route that I followed, a number of our team members at Insight.Out are passionate about the huge benefits that solid advice can deliver for our clients. We currently have four members of the team who are studying for the Personal Finance Society exams in a bid to become Chartered Financial Planners with Insight.Out
What are the main personal skills your job requires?
As a Lifetime Financial Planner, I’m a problem-solver, logical and have an eye for detail. I also have ethical standards that I stand by each and every day and essentially a desire to help each and every client who comes through our doors.
As a Managing Director, leading our team, I am generous with my time in helping others to achieve their potential and am very much aware that it’s a team effort that’s led to our success. Every person plays a hugely important role in the success of Insight.Out and are rewarded accordingly.
What does a typical day entail?
As one of the UK’s few qualified Pension ‘Transfer Specialists, I can often be found on the red-eye flight to England.
We work for some of the UK’s largest corporations dealing with complex pension transfers and I’m on hand to meet with employees, listen to their concerns and offer them solid advice that will be best suited to their future needs.
After a day of meetings in England, I’ll check in with the office, allocate actions from my meetings and prepare for the next day’s appointments.
I arrive home, and after dinner, will often spend another hour or so reading up on notes ahead of my appointments, which are often with private individuals, assessing their retirement needs, planning nest-eggs, assessing investments or other financial planning requirements.
What are the best and most challenging aspects of the job?
Helping people to achieve their goals – not just financial goals but life goals and preparing for their retirement. It’s also incredibly rewarding to be part of a growing company, where the team are growing in confidence and experience alongside the growth of Insight.Out.
The most challenging aspects are when clients’ expectations exceed reality, which thankfully doesn’t happen too often, and also constantly challenging the myth that you need to be very wealthy to engage the services of a Lifetime Financial Planner – this is simply not true.
Why is what you do important?
We’re committed to helping our clients achieve their lifestyle goals. Financial planning can seem like a minefield but, with the right guidance, we can ensure our clients achieve the best outcomes for their future. With our expertise and ability to understand clients’ lifestyles, aspirations and priorities, we can offer thorough planning advice that really delivers for our clients.
What advice would you give anyone looking to follow a similar career path?
The Personal Finance Society’s exams are costly and take a huge amount of time so thin to get experience in a reputable financial planning firm. Immerse yourself in the work, and find out if this is something that you would like to do – can you see yourself in the role of a Financial Planner? If so, go for it!
If you weren’t doing this what would you like to do?
I would love to be a Master Whiskey Blender! For many years, I have collected whiskey and scotch and creating some of my own compositions would be a lot of fun.
What is the one piece of advice you would give to yourself on your first day?
Absorb everything around you and be a sponge for information. Listen, learn and grow.
Describe your ideal day off.
When I get the chance to take a couple of days off, I head to the stunningly beautiful Kenmare in Kerry. It’s a home from home as I visit at least once a year and we’re now ‘regulars. We meet many familiar faces whilst enjoying the fabulous food, scenery and great craic – that’s my ideal day off.
And finally, what’s the key to any successful job search?
Work out what’s important to you as a person, and if possible, align your values to a role and/or employer who shares these values. If you’re passionate about your job, it won’t seem like work, and as we spend the majority of our lives ‘working’ it’s important to invest sometime in finding a role that you will love.