Teaching for the next generation

Mark Rando reveals why he set up his firm, Rando and Associates, to specialise in catering for future generations.

Before became a financial adviser, Mark Rando was a primary school teacher. He pursued that career for around 13 years before deciding to make the change. In April 2005, Mr Rando began his firm, Rando and Associates, without any clients and, by his own admission, “did the hard road”. “I was encouraged into the industry by a good mate of mine who had an insurance and financial planning practice, and he brought me on board,” he says.

“He got me started, and then went to another business for a couple of years and then, through circumstance, ended out on my own.” Reflecting on his time as a teacher, Mr Rando says his questioning skills are certainly something that he brought from that profession in pursuing the adviser career path.

Setting up the kids

A major part of Rando and Associates’ client offering is its specialisation in inter-generational advice, Mr Rando says.

Initially, he set up the firm to specialise in superannuation and insurance but realised over time that his client’s children also needed financial advice and needed to go further. Inter-generational advice is something advisers could easily overlook if they don’t know their clients well enough and know their circumstances, according to Mr Rando.

“For us, we know our clients well. We know where they come from, and we sort of tend to focus on that now,” he says. “We look at their financial family tree – we look at other people within their association that could have a financial impact on them. That could even be business partners. De-facto families are a big issue with that too.”

Mr Rando also cites his own sons as an example of the importance in successfully setting up the financial future of the next generation. “When I started my business, my boys were 11 years younger. They are 18 and 20 now, so, at the time that I started the business, they didn’t need the things that I’m doing,” he says.

As a result, Mr Rando has had to look at placing his sons into some life insurance cover should anything unfortunate happen to them. “We’ve had to look at putting them into insurance because, if they become disabled and/or cannot work or become a financial burden, I haven’t necessarily got the money to look after them,” he says. “So we’re talking to our clients now about their kids and their needs and, as part of the full financial plan, making sure that we try to mitigate any risk that a client would have.”

Towards full service

Rando and Associates has had to morph into a practice “that caters right across the board”, Mr Rando says.

He adds that being based in a regional part of Western Australia is a major factor in that transformation. “What’s unique about this is that we’ve had so much success but we’ve come from a very rural area.

That in itself has its challenges, because you know people so well and that comes with its own complications,” Mr Rando says. Moving forward, Mr Rando hopes his firm will be able to provide a full and complete service offering to his clients. “Hopefully in the next year to year and a half we’ll have a full financial planning service, from estate planning to accounting – all the way through,” Mr Rando says.

“We’ll be able to lead a client through every facet of their financial life.”

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