Video-calling: A boost to financial literacy?

Video-calling isn’t going anywhere, and it’s had some surprising positive effects throughout the pandemic, including empowering women financially.

Whether you prefer to talk through your personal circumstances in-person or via video call, your Wellesley financial adviser is here to help you take control of your financial future.

Overview:

  • Online meetings enable people to access professional development opportunities they might otherwise have missed out on.
  • For those who don’t have time for an in-person catchup with their adviser, they can instead interact via video call.
  • An added benefit is that couples can easily have a joint meeting with their adviser, while even elderly parents and teenagers can dip into the meeting to share their points of view too – all the while developing their own financial literacy.

Virtual reality

Virtual meetings have become second nature in both our professional and social lives, and their positive ripple effect may be more far-reaching than many people realise – such as helping more women engage with their finances.

In the days preceding COVID-19, most people used video-calling infrequently, with FaceTime and similar apps generally used for informal catchups with family or friends.

Then, all of a sudden, working from home became mandatory, and although it may have initially seemed odd to connect with colleagues and clients via a computer screen, people now jump onto video calls without a second thought – from business meetings to conferences and catchups with financial advisers.

CPD and networking 

For those who want it, it seems that video calls are here to stay.

Online events are allowing people to access professional development opportunities that they might otherwise have missed out on – for example, perhaps because travelling to an industry conference in another city would have been too time-consuming, or have required an overnight stay.

Online meetups have also meant that networking is now easier, especially as ‘breakout rooms’ are often used to give participants the opportunity to talk in smaller, more focused groups.

Unlike networking within a crowded room, virtual gatherings offer more of a structure – for example, you’re often given specific questions or topics for discussion, plus time limits – and this makes for more productive sessions. Plus the bonus is that you haven’t had to travel anywhere, and when you leave, you’re already at home.

Naturally, this has been particularly advantageous for parents, and women, who might previously have found that childcare or family commitments precluded them from attending.

Finance is for all 

Being able to sit down with people to discuss their finances face-to-face has always been deemed to be a must. Communication can also be non-verbal, and it’s undoubtedly that bit easier for professionals to grasp what their clients are saying when they meet in-person. Moving forwards, this won’t change, and we, as financial advisers, will always be here for physical meetings.

Yet it’s also a given that – certainly through the pandemic – video-calling has been a lifeline for those in need of financial advice, who ordinarily wouldn’t have been able to find the time or had responsibility for their finances. When only one person oversees the money, it can make things tricky for their partner in the event of divorce or death.

Instead of one person in a relationship taking on the role of managing finances – be it because they’re more confident with it or are able to pop into a post-work meeting with an adviser near their office, while their partner sees to the after-school routine – logistically, it’s more straightforward for couples to sit down together with their adviser.

The same can be said for elderly parents and grown-up children. Historically, an adviser might not have had the opportunity to meet with family members in-person, but those parties can now be present and involved. They can share their points of view, or just listen – when important financial decisions are being made.

What’s more, they can also be empowered. Being able to hop on a video call and ask a financial adviser a burning question leads to promoting broader financial literacy within the household – thereby helping individuals to gain a better understanding of everything from pensions planning to Inheritance Tax.

To sum up, the knock-on effect of having a virtual discussion at home with an adviser can go far beyond what’s decided in any given meeting – conveying even a basic level of personal finance knowledge can translate into a crucial life skill.

Another unexpected benefit of the virtual meeting is that – in the comfort and familiarity of their own homes, surrounded by their family members – many individuals feel more at ease with their adviser – and subsequently, they might feel they can open up more. This is not to be underestimated, as so much of financial planning involves empathising with people’s personal circumstances, and recognising particular needs, motivations and goals.

Whether you prefer to discuss your personal circumstances face-to-face or via video call, get in touch with your Wellesley financial adviser today, and take control of your financial future.

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