Ellis Bates Financial Advisers would like to congratulate Stephanie McClarence who has officially become a Fellow of the Personal Finance Society (PFS).
Stephanie started her career in financial services in 2013, initially focused on investment management and product research. While she had a hand in creating template paragraphs for suitability reports and providing guidance and support to Advisers with technical knowledge, her involvement in the advice process was at arm’s length for the first 4 years of her career, before moving into Paraplanning and now advising.
It was in March 2015 when Steph first decided she wanted to achieve Fellowship status and became fully committed to her studies, achieving a Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning by August 2016.
The road to becoming a Fellow doesn’t come without its difficulties so we asked Steph what the most difficult parts of her journey were:
“The most challenging thing I would say is trying to find a work/life/study balance. Doing these exams takes a huge commitment. Originally I was working in product research and not part of the advice process. I felt I was learning the material each time from a standing start with very little frame for reference. I had to work a little harder to figure out how the information I was absorbing would play out in practice.”
However, the team at Ellis Bates has always been there to lend a helping hand whenever needed;
“I’ve done 6 exams since starting at EB in August 2017 and the Regional Directors, Directors, etc have all been incredibly supportive. I knew that if I didn’t understand anything I could speak with someone who was an expert in the field, and they would be able to help break it down. Obviously, there was study leave available to me and the support in financing the exams as well, but the genuine excitement and support from every member of the company when they find out that you’ve passed an exam has been a wonderful experience. This definitely helped carry me through the next exam I had planned.”
The last exam Stephanie took, in 2018, meant she achieved Fellowship Status within the PFS and upon completion ensured she had all the tools available to make sure that any advice or guidance she was giving to clients would be the best it could possibly be. Becoming a Fellow of the Personal Finance Society is a wonderful bonus that went with that, and with only 2.4% of all PFS members being Fellows, it goes to show the great scale of Stephanie’s achievement.