A YEAR ago, Mr Jason Tian gave up a decade of hard work that led him to a comfortable position in a global insurance company to join Financial Alliance as an associate director.
“I took about a year to research about Financial Alliance and decided to forgo everything I had painfully built over the last 10 years — including all the commissions from renewals of insurance policies — to join this firm,” he says.
Mr Tian decided to join the licensed Independent Financial Adviser (IFA) because he believes that the IFA model allows him to place clients’ interest first and provide holistic financial planning, without the obligation to recommend only certain affiliated brands of financial products.
“Being with an independent financial advisory company means that we are able to provide our clients with impartial advice from a continually evolving product range offered by companies across the entire insurance, investment and mortgage industry,” he says.
He chose Financial Alliance in particular because of its culture, its strong support team and its innovative proprietary softwares.
“It is a very structured and organised company that keeps its internal operations and processes in tip-top order. The firm has also achieved many awards.
“Working in such a company allows me to spend more time with my clients without getting buried in a mountain of paperwork,” he says.
Mr Tian also likes the company’s cohesive and friendly work culture where everyone — from support staff to the managing director — is approachable and willingly helps one another.
“We work like a big family and we are never selfish in terms of sharing ideas, knowledge and support. The company runs on a very open concept where communication is strongly encouraged.”
Financial Alliance is a one-stop financial solutions provider that is authorised to market and provide financial advisory services relating to life policies, securities and collective investment schemes.
The company also ties up with specialists such as law firms to advise on products and services such as loans, wills and trusts, financial planning and alternative investments.
“We actively champion the education of consumers on the advantages and hazards relating to wealth management and financial planning,” he says. “The board game that we designed and market is a good tool to help both young and old to learn about financial planning and how to manage risk.”
Against all odds
Mr Tian graduated with a Bachelor of Social Science with honours in economics from the National University of Singapore in 1989 and joined the insurance sector in 1997.
“I got strong objection from my family when I first joined the insurance industry. They believe a graduate should not be an insurance agent. In those days, many held the view that insurance agents are high-class beggars,” he says.
Many of his friends avoided him, but he persisted. Eventually, most of them began to appreciate what he was doing.
Rising to the position of associate director, he now enjoys being “a leader, a manager, a recruiter, a motivator, a close friend, and an adviser” all rolled into one.
“Besides working closely with my clients to provide financial planning, I also provide appropriate advice to help my team members meet their challenges. My team’s core values are in line with my company’s, which are integrity, professionalism and competency,” he says.
What he loves most about his job is the flexibility and mobility.
“One thing that I love about this job is that it is never desk-bound. We are mobile and can meet our clients in our office, in clients’ offices, in their homes, restaurants or any places that are mutually convenient,” he says.
“With my advisers, we learn about what is happening in the market, discuss cases, study new and existing products and services and share our experience and challenges.”
He adds: “I love to spend time with my family and this job allows me to do just that. I am answerable to myself, and I am in control of my time.