What's your commute like?

Sometimes, one comes across an image or video that is so good that you just want to find an excuse to use it in some way.

This is one of those times.  Take a look at this video of a chap called Kelly McGarry:

So, what am I going to make of this one, I hear you ask?

I'm fortunate to live relatively close to my office - so close that I can, at a pinch, walk into work.  In practice, I normally cycle.  At my age, it's a valid form of exercise, and although one takes one's life in one's hands these days on the roads, I've got all those bits of kit which are supposed to make me conspicuous and limit the damage, should the worst happen.  There's a quantum gap, however, between the kinds of risks I encounter, when mounted on my trusty Brompton, and the kinds of risks associated with Mr McGarry's cycling pursuits.  I can't imagine doing a backflip over a 72ft canyon even once - presumably this is the kind of thing he's had to practice time and time again, if there is to be any hope of getting it right.  And what about those times when he didn't?  (Get it right, that is).

By now, you'll see where I'm headed with this one...

There is a merit in 'boring' when it comes to delivery of our financial-planning or wealth-management services.  Too many procedural backflips, or sudden launches into new investment territory bring with them moments of heightened risk for both adviser and client.  If, as financial-planners, our aim is to help the client more reliably achieve their objectives, then the introduction of progressively more fancy or exotic devices at intervals along the way is at best a distraction, and at worst drops us 72 feet into the bottom of a canyon.  From which point it may not be the easiest thing to get out.

As readers of this Blog will know, ValidPath have been around, doing what we do, for ten years.  Over that time, as a firm which supervises the advice given by others, we've learned some very clear lessons about the pitfalls facing advisers if they choose the wrong kind of model.  None of this is rocket science.  Indeed, the briefest exercise of rational thought would confirm the matter:  our clients' interests, and our own coincide most frequently where planning and execution emphasise the simplicity and steadiness of our clients' financial provisions.  Anything else may provide a very impressive stunt - if it goes well.  But carrying off that feat, day in, day out, would be a big ask even for Superman.
The introduction to the ValidPath Investment Proposition has been updated

Kevin Moss, 19/11/2013