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‘Time to take the training wheels off’: Completing the professional year

Those completing their professional year should slow down and soak in the experience instead of rushing to complete it within a year, according to a new adviser.

Having just completed her professional year (PY) at Findex, Sosha Jay has shared her experiences and tips for those considering starting their PY on their way to becoming a financial adviser.

Speaking to ifa, Jay said that her biggest piece of advice for those starting their PY is to “really take your time and soak it in”, and while the title PY leads many to believe that they need to complete it within a year, she discouraged people from rushing the process.

“It’s the only time in your career when you’ve got that support, a specific person, but also a team of people that’s constantly helping you drive. Just really soak that in because the minute you’re off, you’ve got targets to meet, you’ve got a book of clients to keep and so just really soak it in,” Jay said.

Now that she has finished her PY and is stepping into her role as a financial adviser, she said, “It’s time to take the training wheels off”.

Jay explained that the PY allowed her to learn essential skills for the job that aren’t taught at university, such as the soft skills for communicating with clients.

“A lot of our job is handholding. Clients can easily Google super contribution cap limits, but the reason that they come to an adviser is for that handholding and that emotional support when they’ve got to make really big decisions. So that’s the part that you can only learn really, on the job,” she said.


Jay added that at Findex, she was able to learn from a number of different advisers and use their methods and styles to develop herself as an adviser.

“You can sit with many other advisers, you don’t have to just choose that one person that you’ve chosen to be the supervisor throughout your year. I sat in with multiple advisers that we have at Findex and got to really learn each person’s style and technique and use bits and parts of that to form my own technique as an adviser,” she said.

Reflecting on her experience, Jay said that having a clear structure was important during her training and made it easier to keep track of her progress.

“I think for us at Findex, we were very lucky because we’ve had a couple of people go through the professional year in the company. I think we’ve got it down pretty good in terms of the structure of the PY,” she said.

“So just making sure that there’s a structure in place so you know when you might finish each quarter, you’ve set yourself guidelines to reach and, obviously, our compliance team was great in making sure that we were reaching everything.”

Looking forward, Jay said now that she has finished her PY, she will be taking on greater responsibilities within the company, while also finding ways to give back.

“Giving back is a huge part of my values. When I was in uni, I struggled to find people to reach out to and ask about financial planning. So, being that figure for people, whether that’s internally or externally,” she said.

“I’d love to be in a role where I can give back and lead a team of advisers or lead a company. That’s my goal. And I do try and work hard to achieve my goals. We’ll see what five to 10 years brings.”