Interview of Dilshad Billimoria with

In an exclusive interview with thefundoo, Ms. Dilshad, Founder of Dilzer Consultants shares few ways to keep clients’ perspective when the markets are volatile.

1. Would you give us a little information about your background and what made you become a successful financial advisor?

I was keen to pursue a career in hotel management but my father spotted my knack for numbers. He encouraged me to get into finance and I agreed. Today, I am oneof the most respected advisors in India. In 2008, I was nominated by CNBC Financial Advisor Awards as one of the top 3 advisors from the South. I also was a MDRT qualifier since 2002.

I attribute this success to my father’s timely advice. After graduation,I earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management majoring in Finance. I began my career in 1998 with a large distribution firm for a brief stint of 1.5 years. I was always keen on setting up my own advisory firm and so I floated Dilzer Consultants in July 2001. “The passion to strike out on my own was all consuming.”

Strengths/Attributes of success

1. Attention to detail and therefore being able to personalize recommendations. Today, there is a vast amount of information available for clients to do anything, including their own planning. But what the client wants is personalisation; solutions specific to his/her problems.

2. I treat any problem of a client as though it were my own. Dilzer Consultants Pvt Ltd always works in the Fiduciary interest of our clients.

3. We at Dilzer Consultants Pvt. Ltd. try and provide the best service in the industry with minimum turnaround time.

4. Our organisation’s processes’ responsibilities are in place and, therefore, we are able to provide end-to-end solutions in a methodical manner with quick turnaround time.

Our Financial Planning Division is ISO 9001(2008) Certified.

2. Sometimes people avoid dealing with their finances or investing because they feel overwhelmed by numbers and have no understanding of stocks, bonds, or mutual funds, etc. How do you help your clients through that process?

1. Listen to what the client wants. Very often, advisors start talking about what they have to offer and never seem to listen to what the client actually wants.

2. Explain details in simple english via diagrams if possible. The more jargon you use, the more the client is put off.

3. Share the basics of investing and financial planning with prospective clients, so they have an understanding.

4. Client is not bothered about where the market was yesterday, 10 years ago, or where it will be tomorrow. You need to speak about goals, asset allocation, and planning and suggest he sticks to his plan if he wants to achieve his financial goals.

5. An annual goal review re-iterates the advisors commitment and trust to the client’s future.

3. Tell us a few ways to keep clients’ perspective when markets are highly volatile?

Communicate when the markets are bad and when things don’t look rosy.
Communication, in bad times, is the key to maintaining healthy client relationships.

In times of trouble and turmoil, financial advisors need to turn to clients and be honest with them.

4. What are the major challenges and opportunities while serving NRI investors?

NRI Investors need option with global perspective in mind. Many NRI investors have funds overseas and are looking to invest in India from the perspective of country diversification.

It is important for the advisor to understand tax laws of multiple countries with recent FATCA guidelines that India has signed an agreement for.

5. What do you think are the most common mistakes individuals or families make when it comes to their personal finances?

Personal Finance is boring. Going to a restaurant or for a movie is far more interesting and does not involve any brain work.

The last thing on the mind of an individual is to keep his/her finances in order.

Sometimes people get scared because they don’t understand the basics of budgeting, or savings, or they feel they can manage it themselves, or there is genuine paucity of time for them to monitor their personal investments.

Whatever, be the reason, it is incorrect if someone is working so hard and hardly has time for his personal wealth. Shouldn’t that work as hard for him/ her?

Financial Literacy has a major role to play towards understanding the basics of finances and the benefits sought from the outcome of a financial planning exercise.

6. If I am your investor and ask you to manage my money, what would you recommend?

Any investment, would depend on several factors like age, time horizon to goal, risk profile and objective of investment need. After assesing them, asset allocation should be the primary tool to allocate investible surplus.