IIG News

IIG Insights Discovery Insure Webinar: Virtual Financial Planning Is the Future of Financial Services

On 16th September 2021, the IIG held a webinar sponsored by Discovery Insure. The IIG Vice President, who also heads up the IIG’s Education portfolio, Simphiwe Mtyali, welcomed all in attendance and introduced the speaker and topic of the day as Virtual Financial Planning Is the Future of Financial Services. Callie Nel, who has more than three decades in the financial services industry and has worked for blue-chip companies currently heads up Retail Distribution at Discovery.


In his talk, Callie spoke about how virtual financial planning does not only entail sales but also client services and communication. that Most companies are still working from home in a mainstream way, and we have about 10% of staff at head offices at any given time.


He spoke about how unreal the past year has been with the pandemic when all the roads were empty and shops were depleted. How everything moved from ‘nothing felt normal’ to becoming the ‘new normal’ and hybrid working conditions were implemented.

Callie highlighted the uncertainty and need for forward-thinking stating that everyone who went for an interview in 2015 and answered the question ‘where do you see yourself in five years got the answer wrong.


He shared a client’s story that a few months into the lockdown the client had lost many of his clients and he couldn’t even contact them, which was a really hard blow to his business.  This demonstrated the value of having an advisor, having contact with that person and being there for the person not only in bad times but also in good times as well, builds lifetime relationships.


These are some of Callie’s lessons learned in the past 18 months:

  • family matters more than anything
  • revolution in medicine was unleashed
  • self-care is very critical
  • pre-fund and be ready for the next issue
  • age doesn’t really matter, it is nothing but a number
  • technology became our best friend
  • work is basically anywhere
  • hope for prosperity
  • the benefits of telemedicine have become indisputable

Callie expressed his concern about the depression that affects most people today and the struggle to work and adapt in the new environment which is why he is reaching out, because people’s lives can be touched in so many different ways.


Callie says whether we are ready or not, the fourth wave is coming and we have to talk about it and be realistic about it that we have not seen the end of it yet.


The biggest lesson he mentioned was that virtual financial planning is a core component of the future of financial services. He emphasised that we need to understand that we don’t have much of a choice but to adapt to this.


In closing, Callie mentioned that there are two main areas of moving forward.

The first one is to have the willingness to adjust and you have to have that willingness to be able to engage in something that is personal but feels different.


The second is that you have to have adaptability, you have to have communication abilities and be comfortable to speak which is not easy. Make the impersonal personal.


Callie suggested that Udemy be utilized for Zoom’s training courses.


The Insights Session ended with a Q&A session.


Simphiwe thanked Callie for the presentation and also the audience.


We encourage the IIG community to register on the IIG CPD vault to earn CPD points for attending the insight sessions.


Article by Mpho Tlagadi

This Insights Session is proudly sponsored by: