The financial advice sector is on a “positive journey” and is set to become a trustworthy industry in a few years’ time, ASIC deputy chairman Peter Kell has said.
In a video interview, which was played at the AFA 2016 National Adviser Conference in Canberra yesterday, Mr Kell said he was optimistic about where the advice industry is heading.
“There are plenty of green shoots around better cultural indicators emerging in the financial advice space,” he said.
“I know we've been through some challenging years, and we've still got some issues to deal with, but you've got on one hand some of the key law reforms, such as putting the best interests of the client first, through to initiatives the industry itself is taking.
“We're not going to finish the journey in a matter of weeks, but I'm very confident that we're on a positive journey here. This will be a very different industry with a much higher level of trust in a few years. I have no doubt about that.”
There is still, however, room for advisers to improve their culture, Mr Kell said. This can be done by simply putting the clients’ interests at the centre of everything, he said.
“One way you can really focus on that is to make sure that your values and your stated commitments to the customer actually align with the way the firm operates,” Mr Kell said.
“Is it your remuneration structure, the ways that you measure the performance of yourself and your staff, the ways that you deal with staff members who raise problems? Do those things support a good culture or do they actually undermine a good culture?
“It’s that misalignment that can sometimes be the problem.”
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