PAA Adviser of the Year Award 2009 winner Stephanie Wiki

By Professional Advisors Association

The Professional Advisors Association Awards 2009 held in Rotorua last Thursday celebrated the cream of the financial advisory industry. Christchurch based The Insurance Clinic’s Stephanie Wiki walked away with the Asteron “Risk Adviser of the Year Award as well as the main prize, the Sovereign PAA Adviser of the Year Award for 2009.

An Ashburton College alumnus and Christchurch native, the humble Wiki topped 17 finalists culled from a list of 85 nominations to walk away with a ten thousand dollar travel voucher and an Apple iPhone. Wiki was elated

“I am still on cloud nine and don’t think it has really sunk in yet. To be Risk Adviser of the Year was tremendous, but to be awarded the big prize is an out of this world experience.”

Chief Executive Officer of the Professional Advisors Association, Dr Dave McMillan advised that the judges were highly impressed with the quality of Wiki’s business.

“Our members are bound by a code of ethics and a complaints procedure that holds the adviser accountable for the financial advice they give. The awards are designed to say that of all the people who adhere to our code of ethics and standards, here’s the cream of the crop. Stephanie’s business is right up there with the very best and we are delighted with such a deserving winner.”

Wiki’s 14 year track record as an adviser is exemplary. Rising from the ranks of AA Financial Services in the mid nineties, she hung up her shingle in Christchurch’s Ferrymead in May 2005 and hasn’t looked back since. Her clients speak glowingly of her. Compliments range from a loyal client’s comment that,

“..she demonstrated a confidence in her knowledge of what products were on offer and which suited our needs best at the time” to ING Life’s Managing Director Naomi Ballantyne’s remark that “Without hesitation I would endorse Stephanie’s practices as being of the highest integrity”

Well respected for her fierce advocacy on behalf of her clients, Wiki is highly respectful of their confidence.

Steph Wiki Insurance Adviser of the Year “As advisers, it is our role to protect our clients. In order for us to do our work well, we have to know so much about their health and financial circumstances. It is our job to assist in securing our clients’ future. We often know a lot more about them than their accountants or their lawyers do and I never take this privilege lightly.”

When asked about her thoughts on the current economic situation in relation to her industry, she is puzzled.

“We are understandably fielding quite a number of redundancy cover requests at the moment. I find it interesting that we seem to put more store to loosing a job through redundancy than we do to illness or injury. Redundancy leaves us able bodied and capable of choosing reemployment, something which is often precluded by illness or injury. Yet we pay more attention to redundancy cover than we do to income protection cover which takes illness or injury into consideration”

Consequently, long term strategies form the basis of her advice to her clients and she is pleased to note that to date, she has not had to renegotiate reductions in their contracts. “I plan for all eventualities on behalf of my clients.” Wiki’s award entry was almost a non starter.

awards02“When I first received my nomination, I was all for it. Then the paperwork arrived and I ducked for cover. If it hadn’t been for the tenacity of good friends, I would not have submitted anything. Fulfilling the very detailed awards submission process was in retrospect a God send. It made me look honestly at my business as a whole, and highlighted where we were on the right track and where we needed to improve. It’s an honesty check that I recommend to everyone in our industry and advise all association members to front up if you are nominated for the next round.” Accolades definitely go to the Wiki support crew “

The role of an Adviser is a demanding one. We are on call 24/7 and those who live with us require the patience of saints and understanding beyond comprehension. Without the support of my husband Warren and my children Tori (aged 17) and Kaleb (aged 10) I would not be able to do what I do happily. Their role in our business is critical.”

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