Jessica Chard

Title

Senior Wealth Advisor, Director of Wealth Management, ScotiaMcLeod

City

Oakville, Ont.

In the business

18 years

Minimum assets

$750,000

Book size

142 households


Edge

My team is two investment managers, a financial planner, an office manager and an admin assistant. So if clients have questions, we direct them to the right person for an immediate, customized response. For instance, a client called one Monday morning after touring a cottage over the weekend. He wanted to know how much he could offer for it. Our planner incorporated the purchase into his plan and gave him the confidence to proceed.

Once clients understand our team approach, they call the member who can best address their questions. If the whole team’s needed, we either ask the client to come in or set up a telephone appointment. Many times, one spouse is more interested in finances than the other. We make a deal with the less-interested spouse to meet at least once a year. We’re fee-based, and clients pay 0.65% to 1.50%.

Cultivating clients

We organize 10 to 12 events a year customized for men, women and couples, since some clients are more comfortable in the company of their own gender. We hold men’s breakfast sessions where we provide coffee, bagels and updates on markets. For women, our ladies’ high tea series not only discusses market updates, but also physical, emotional and financial wellness. For instance, we held a seminar on lack of sleep, and attendees started discussing the effects of menopause. (It would have been much different with men in the room.) We organize wine and cheese events for couples where we provide market projections.

For the past three years, we’ve held a popular family photography event in December at Paletta Mansion, which is decorated for Christmas, in Burlington, Ont. We invite clients and their families and pay a professional to take group portraits (clients receive a USB stick with pictures). We also serve coffee and dessert so they can chat with us before or after their sessions. One Christmas I received a card featuring the photograph taken at our event. It was gratifying. As a mother of three, I know how hard it is to organize family pictures.

Kanupriya Vashisht is a Toronto-based financial writer.

Originally published in Advisor's Edge

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