'I want to be my clients’ financial quarterback'

Advisor reveals how he re-thought his obsession with returns and realised people wanted a more holistic service

'I want to be my clients’ financial quarterback'

An advisor has set his stall out to become clients’ financial quarterback and expand his holistic practice.

Steven Furtado, 32, of Zagari, Simpson & Associates in Montreal, believes advisors have to start doing more for their clients and has enlisted the help of personal trainers to put small groups through their paces in 45-minute circuit sessions.

It’s a health and lifestyle element he believes will benefit clients' professional and personal life, and prove that his service goes beyond dollar signs.

Before starting his own practice three years ago, Furtado traded equity futures at a hedge fund. Then, after a year focusing on volume and critical mass, he admitted to himself he needed a rethink and fully embraced holistic financial planning.

He told WP: “The first year I was really just generating alpha – returns, returns, returns. But I quickly realised that wasn’t what people wanted; they wanted ‘a go-to guy’. For example, if they need this, call Steve, if they need insurance, call Steve, need anything, call Steve …

“You become their quarterback, the glue that sticks together anything money-related. In this case, it’s adding health and lifestyle into it – I am just becoming the go-to man! The idea is to become their Swiss Army knife.”

Furtado, who has grown his practice to $16 million and a shade under 100 clients in three years, said the sessions are as much a bonding experience as a longevity and discipline exercise. He believes they perfectly encapsulate his holistic approach to being an investment advisor and that if his clients feel good, they are more confident and make better business decisions.

He explained: “I don’t claim to be the best at doing anything but these fitness events tell a story. I am not the personal trainer, not the professional, but I will always bring the person best suited to help my clients with that part of their life.

“I may not be the biggest fixed income specialist in the world and while I know enough about mortgages to have an intelligent conversation about it, I am no expert. But I have the resources in virtually any field to really elevate the experience to my clients. The personal training thing is the best example because I bring someone who is qualified and who has clearly done it. It’s like having a broke financial advisor, you don’t want a personal trainer who is out of shape!”

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