A year ago this week, September 2021, I made the decision to leave my leadership role at the University of Birmingham’s award-winning Careers Network after a heady 12-years. I was going to deep dive into the world of full-time business owner, after growing my freelancing careers coaching and consultancy business over several years.
A lot of factors influenced this transition. My priorities had shifted dramatically, influenced heavily by the pandemic and several close family bereavements.
However, a big part of my decision to make the leap followed a conversation with my Financial Adviser.
Financial considerations are such a key part of any change or transition you’re looking to make, and financial forecasting was a game-changer for me.
My career transition had been 6 years in the making. I embraced a portfolio career as a way of testing out whether my freelance coaching practice could be a way for me to work differently. I was having to make big decisions about whether being a full-time business owner was going to be financially (and emotionally) viable.
Over the past couple of years, juggling my ‘day’ job alongside managing a rapidly growing business, meant that there just wasn’t enough hours in the day, and not enough ‘me’ to go around.
But the big question was:
Could I really afford to say goodbye to the financial stability and (relative) security of a permanent, part-time senior leadership position?
Believe me, these roles are very hard to find!
Carla Brown is an award-winning Chartered Financial Planner and Managing Director of Oakmere Wealth Management Ltd, and has been advising me on pensions and investments for the past few years. I had regularly discussed with Carla about the prospect of eventually leaving the ‘day job’ and investing in my business full time.
Last summer, during one of our 6-monthly check-ins, Carla asked me whether I’d find it useful to do some forecasting to see if the numbers would help me decide when it was time to make the leap.
I’d made lots of assumptions that there was never going to be a ‘right time’ to leave my secure job. Self-employment brought its own medley of exciting opportunities as well as challenges and risks!
I recently reached out to Carla to get her insight into financial forecasting and how it can help people make more informed decisions about their next steps, personally and professionally.
‘Many clients come to us to so we can help them understand what is ‘enough’. How will they know that they have ‘enough’? What do they need to do to create ‘enough’.
Also, and just as importantly, what could prevent them having ‘enough’? What risks are there out there that could possibly derail their plans?
When you leave the security of employment, whether that is to go self-employed or to retire, you are often giving up the peace of mind of a regular income along with other employee benefits such as regular pension contributions, sick pay and death in service.
We can help clients understand what this means to them and look at how they can replace them if necessary.’
When I’m coaching clients to help them navigate career change and retirement transition, the conversation will often touch on whether their finances can take the hit of a career break, retraining, or drop in salary. Speaking to a licensed professional to get a financial plan in place will allow you to make better, informed decisions. As Carla shares:
‘You can enter life transitions with the peace of mind that you are going to be okay. That you know your numbers and it can help avoid making expensive mistakes.
So what is Financial Forecasting?
Cash flow forecasting has completely changed the way Financial Planners interact with their clients, as Carla explains:
The focus is on the client as an individual, not on how many products they have or how much to invest.
We work with our clients to understand exactly where they are now, what their existing plans and products are doing for them and we spend a long time really trying to understand what is important to our clients.
What do they want life to look like? What makes them tick? What excites them?
We drill down on their long-term expenditure needs so we can truly understand what their income needs are going to be throughout their lives and this really is very different for everyone.
For example, some clients have huge aspirations to travel once they retire, whilst others are happy to stay local and spend time with family. It is important we know what their longer term hopes and dreams are so we can help them achieve that.
Money is just a means to an end, it is what you do with it, and the experiences that it allows you to have that make the difference.’
And now, one year later, I am so pleased to have created space in my life to develop my business, and work with amazing people who want to achieve and be their best. Making the career change to work for myself is filled with constant learning, challenge and fulfilment, and am appreciative of the financial growth it has given me.
I’ve really valued Carla’s ongoing financial advice and support. If you’d like to find out more about how Carla and her team could help you, visit https://oakmerewealth.co.uk.
If you’re needing to make some tough decisions about your career – maybe figure out whether you stay or go, what opportunities you want to go for next, or discover what energises you – then I’d love to hear from you. Book a free telephone consultation or email me.
The information provided here is not investment, tax or financial advice. You should consult with a licensed professional for advice concerning your specific situation.