Take cautious comfort with Banks claiming to provide one-stop solutions.
These days most Banks claim to offer solutions to all Financial needs of customers from Banking, Investments, Insurance, Loans etc. Banks have a lion’s share of the Banking and Financial Services market. A large section of investors trust the banks, as they by default associate Banks to Trust as their hard earned savings is safeguarded there.
Banks don’t just do banking today as mentioned above and they want to take grab a big market share of all spectrum of Financial Services products. Customers need to evaluate the expertise of the Bank and its employees in Investment and Insurance products as a bank which holds your savings doesn’t by default qualify as your Investment or Insurance solutions provider . The qualification criteria for that should be their expertise, neutrality, intent , accountability etc in the areas of Investments and Insurance.
When you may want to trust a large brand of a bank for its reputation and the belief you tend to draw in their institutionalised research and processes, its equally important to check if the ground team is alligned to that or if they are just target driven, putting customer-centricity and customer’s interest in the back seat.
Instances of mis-selling largely in Life Insurance though not restricting only to that keep flowing at regular intervals through various media and customers need to take a cautious approach considering these.
The resurgence of individual and boutique investment and insurance distributors and advisors goes on to say that investors realise that the credibility of a team or individual and their expertise are adequate enough to trust their money regardless of a big brand being behind them. Such small setups naturally tend to be more customer-centric and highly accountable as the absence of these can deprive them of their livelihood as only loyal and long term customers can ensure sustainability of their income. Moreover the confidence for them to venture on their own also comes from their expertise and thorough knowledge of their products without which surviving amongst the giant brands would be impossible.
The summary of this post is the necessity of investors to carefully choose their investment and insurance distributor/advisor making proper check of the expertise and intent in handling these businesses and not to get carried away by any brand. Savings ultimately becomes meaningful and transits into wealth only when properly invested and insured. So the custodian of your Savings can be trusted with your investments and insurance only if they are equipped, committed and neutral to offer you the most suited options equally ensuring that the ground team is not deviating from that.
The larger intent of this post is to choose the caretaker of your wealth creation carefully avoiding shallow judgements and the team’s quality, expertise, commitment, ethics and intent are the criteria to choose than just the brand behind.
This approach would create a healthy ecosystem of informed and satisfied investors serviced by accountable and well-equipped distributors and advisors.