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My Mum and Dad had been singing the praises of their financial planner for over 25 years. They’ve really tried to get me to go along and see Shane, mostly because I’ve run up a fair bit of debt through my business. I’m a couple of years off 50 and my interior design business is growing.

The turning point was when Mum and Dad got stuck into some serious estate planning and asked us kids for our opinion on it. My sister and I were a bit uncomfortable discussing it so we booked a family meeting with Shane who explained that if beneficiaries are included in discussions it can avoid issues down the track. During the meeting Dad raised the topic of my debt. Shane suggested that a ‘what if’ plan could be the way to go, as backup in case anything happened to me or my business partner, James. Shane called it business succession planning and it really made sense to me.

Shane seemed very well informed and I was confident that James would think so too. Once we started chatting I got to thinking about what might happen to our company if either of us were not around. Our clients would not be happy and our reputation would be affected.

James and I met with Shane a few weeks ago, and I am so glad we did as the unexpected hit me a few weeks after we finished our business succession plan.

On my recent ski trip I broke my leg. It meant quite a bit of time away from the office and we needed to hire a relationship manager to visit our clients and keep the relationship alive. The business expense cover meant we had funds to hire office and design support. It gave me time to recover without worrying. Seeking financial advice was so easy and has already made a positive impact on my business.

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