Fiona Harris speaks to Rebecca Pritchard about the forceful impact of being a Rising Star winner.
From confidence building, to networking, to enriched client relationships, the cumulative effect of winning the AFA Rising Star of the Year Award has been considerable for last year’s winner Rebecca Pritchard.
And it’s not just about the individual. Take her firm, for example.
Wealth Enhancers, where she is an adviser, has definitely seen tangible benefits, such as an upswing in referrals: “Our marketing team has loved it and so have the members. It is still the highest engagement post, people who were my members bragging [about the win]. It was gorgeous.”
On a personal level it has provided her with a platform to speak about topics she is passionate about. Pritchard says the Rising Star Award gave her both the confidence to articulate her perspective on topics such as adviser wellbeing and how to make financial advice engaging.
Only last month, for example, she was a panellist at a breakfast hosted by ANZ Wealth in Sydney on International Women’s Day.
“I told my own stories about why I was passionate about the area. It was a new experience and the feedback was great,” says Pritchard.
She considers herself to be more organised in her thinking and messaging, due to greater confidence, partly gained from interaction with industry veterans such as ANZ Bank deputy chief executive officer Alexis George and AFA CEO Phil Kewin.
Pritchard says over the past 12 months she had more than 20 opportunities directly related to her winner status. She has made it a priority to be available and open to all the experiences it brings.
This has included the two-week nationwide AFA Connect Roadshow, media training and a range of media opportunities including commenting on the recent federal budget for TV show Your Money Live.
Nominations for this year’s award open on April 29, and individuals can nominate themselves or be nominated by others.
For the 2018 AFA Rising Star of the Year Award, Pritchard was nominated by Finn Kelly, cofounder of Wealth Enhancer and a past finalist in the award.
Pritchard says the award “definitely comes up [with clients]”, and has become one touch point, among several, in client interaction. She points out it may not a driving force in itself.
She encourages advisers who have junior members in their team to champion their future and to nominate those just starting out.
There is also the opportunity to nominate yourself: “Don’t be afraid to nominate yourself. I don’t think it happens nearly enough,” she advises.