March 4, 2020

Key Learnings from Network FP’s Annual Conference

Rohit Bornarkar
Founder & Chief Financial Planner, Arthapurna Solutions

Key Learnings from Network FP’s Annual Conference 

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This article was authored by Mr. Rohit Bornarkar with inputs by Col. Sanjeev Govila (Retd.).

With this theme, Network FP Annual Conference 2020 excelled in all the possible departments, be it topics, compering, speakers, event organisation, professionalism on all fronts, element of fun!

Sadique Neelgund started with a warm welcome to all delegates and Gajendra Kothari, in his usual simple and lucid style emphasised on the theme by giving quotes and examples.

E.g. Mr Harsh Goenka: “Life is nothing but Learning then Earning and then Returning to the society!”

Lead by example for:

1)Your Clients, 2)Your team and 3)Your Community and Society 4) The next generation

There was a lot of “Grahan”, then there was “Chintan” from my side and I am hereby putting all the important points in front of you as part of “Manan”!

1] Lead by Example – In Life, Work & Beyond

Gyanvatsal Swami
Motivational Speaker & Social Reformer

  • Over infatuation towards money plants the seeds of many wrongs in your mind.
  • Few important attributes to inculcate:
  1. Attitude: Nothing can disturb me unless I allow it to!
  2. Sense of selflessness: It will attract more people and resources to come to you!
  3. Ethics/Morality: Marry twice: Spouse and Ethics. Make it a life-long partnership!
  4. Don’t envy anyone: You will die in envy!
  5. Handle your failures or setbacks with dignity!
  6. IQ, EQ, SQ: Spiritual Quotient is the need of the time to lead effectively
  7. Reduce Ego: Adjustments, Compromises are part of life!

2] Things for 5X in 5Y

Nimesh Shah
MD & CEO, ICICI Prudential AMC

  • Brand helps to scale business
  • Reach out to slightly lesser than top end of pyramid i.e lower than HNI/UHNI, for scalability
  • Counter cyclical approach helps in the long run: Think of out of fashion products
  • Debt is a very crucial part of a portfolio, don’t get infatuated by Equity only
  • As an economy graduates, people will convert from Depositors to Investors – shift them towards safe Debt MF first
  • Initial few years: you should focus on building a portfolio, not the business margin

3] Yoga & Money – The Code of Conduct

Mimi Partha Sarthy
Founder and MD, Sinhasi Consultants Pvt. Ltd.

  • Equilibrium needs to be maintained : No euphoria during good times and no depression during bad times!
  • External regulator is needed for prevention of mistakes & protection, similarly there is Internal Regulator which is Yoga
  • Yama – Code of conduct means Attitude towards others
  • Niyama – Practices means Attitude towards yourself
  • Always breathe consciously

4] Communicating Your Alpha

Swarup Mohanty
CEO, Mirae Asset Global Investments

  • How Advisor Alpha is generated:
  1. Behaviour: 100-150 basis points
  2. Asset allocation : 0-75 bp
  3. Portfolio rebalancing : 0-35 bp
  4. Expense Ratio, Management fees : 0-40 bp
  5. Selecting MF Schemes : 0 basis points
  • Annual rebalancing helps
  • Focus on relationship management rather than portfolio management

5] The #1 Declaration of Real Advisors

Carl Richards
Author, Behaviour Gap & Speaker

Live Webcast Streaming

Internationally recognised mentor, Carl provided insights through his pictures –live during the session!

Topics of 5 pictures he shared during session are:

  1. Cycle : Greed – Buy >> Fear – Sell >> Repeat until broke

As advisor, you need to stop this behaviour of clients!

  1. Gap between : Current Reality >>> Goal

Tell clients that the path towards goal from current reality is not a straight line!

  • Financial Plan or Life Plan is worthless without on-going process of planning and course correction
  1. Pyramid:

Plan >> Process >> Product

  • Step 1 : PLAN at the base (Most important)
  • Step 2 : PROCESS in middle
  • Step 3 : Tip of pyramid : PRODUCT (Imp but least important)
  1. People want you to make it simpler
  • Take your clients to the goals by simple solutions
  1. Two Circles: 1)Things That matter and 2) Things You Can Control
  • Focus on things that matter as well as are in your control!

6] Risk Return Tradeoff in VUCA World

Chandresh Nigam
MD & CEO, Axis Mutual Fund

He focused on investing in a Volatile, Uncertain ,Complex, Ambiguous world.

Few statistical insights from his session:

  • 96% stocks could not beat risk free 1 month T- bills
  • 58% of surveyed institutional investors believe that a big recession is coming in 2-3 years
  • High risk does not always mean High returns: High beta stocks have underperformed over long term than low beta!
  • Financial Risk management: Quality Businesses, Price, Portfolio liquidity, Portfolio volatility, Timely response to events

7] Customer Obsession – The Next Level

Ashok Kumar E R
Co-Founder, ScripBox

Following are few tips on how to focus on customer satisfaction:

  • Simplicity vs. Complexity:

-Products and presentation need to be simple

-Communicate in the client’s language

  • Less vs. More:

-Choices confuse customers

  • Unbiased vs. Bias

-Avoid biases and pull customers away from biases

  • Doing right for the customer:

-e.g. Make customer agreements very simple to understand

8] The Eternal Optimist

Motilal Oswal
Chairman & MD, Motilal Oswal Financial Services Limited

One of the highly respected business name in India, Motilal ji gave invaluable inputs from his lifelong learnings and experiences.

Questions and answers session for delegates with Motilal ji:

  • How he manages to stay calm, especially in his volatile field of work?

-Yoga > Meditation > Exercise

-Daily habits

-Life is mostly about building relationships

  • Secrets of long lasting partnership with Ramdeoji?

-Trust and Commitment!

-Both possessing complimentary skills

-Same passion, ethical values, goals and clarity shared by both

9] The New Indian Retirementality

Ajit Menon
CEO, PGIM India Mutual Fund

  • Challenges in Retirement planning:

>Humans were wired to think about short term or the next meal. Long term thinking does not come easy

>Living long

>Falling birth rate

>Population is moving towards Pension Trap

Research insights: From a first of a kind survey conducted by PGIM in India on the topic of “Retirement”:

  1. People like to plan for happy outcomes than for unhappy outcomes and retirement is not a happy outcome, so “paint it right!”
  1. There is a sequence in people’s mind while planning: Short term goals then Uncertain eventualities and then last, Certain eventualities!
  1. 2/3rd of Indians are thinking about a second source of income – Investing helps in this cause.

10] Wellness Terrific, Leadership Dynamic

Dr. Mickey Mehta
Global leading holistic health guru and a corporate life coach

In one of the very energetic sessions of the day, Mickey provided tips for maintaining proper balance in life:

  • Help people to enjoy the wealth
  • Detach from outcome
  • Swasth means Swayam Sthiti : Being present in self
  • Being zero is not empty but it is that nothingness that brings more value to everything!

11] Stand Up Comedy – My Experiments with Truth !

P V Subramanyam
Author and CEO,

We all know how witty and sarcasm expert Subra is in his writing or speeches! He showed he can beat a professional stand-up comedian hands down!

12] Bringing Focus in Chaos

Sanjay Sapre
President, Franklin Templeton  India

Mantras for you:

  1. Control the Controllable : And stop worrying about what is uncontrollable
  2. Prioritise Your Time
  3. Focus on yourself : Health, Family, Friends

Mantras for business:

  1. Customer Retention : Measure your success with customers
  2. Data is a Gold Mine
  3. Customer de-risk via cross sell

13] The Partnership Practice – Making it Work

Sachin Jain & Shobhit Gupta
Partners, Moneygain Consultants Pvt Ltd.

Challenges and how to overcome those through partnership:

  1. Only 24 hours a day : Share the responsibilities
  2. Technology could be expensive : Share the resources, optimise and reduce cost
  3. Access to products & innovation : Collective pool helps access/create key offerings
  4. Scaling could be difficult due to lack of motivation: Team keeps you motivated and helps scale better

14] Guerrilla Marketing – Jo Dikta Hai, Woh Bikta Hai

Prabin Agarwal
Founder, Fortune Securities

Prabin ji shared very simple, cost effective and fruitful strategies he used for brand positioning over the period of time.

Few points to ponder:

  • Keep trying and keep changing
  • Visibility does enhance our credibility

15] Top 3 Global Trends in Financial Planning

Noel Maye
CEO, FPSB Ltd (Global)

  • Technology impact and the need to enhance soft skills and attributes :

Move over from the things which can be done by machines easily and with very low cost.

Focus on:



>Behavioural Finance,

>Strategic Thinking

  • Regulation:

>Focus on client first and consumer protection

>Engage and involve authorities in your future plans if possible

  • Demographics:

>Ageing of population is a global problem

>India is yet to reach that problem so a huge opportunity exists.

16] ₹ 100 Trillion Opportunity & IFAs

Nilesh Shah
MD, Kotak AMC and Chairman, AMFI

Issues faced by IFA Community:

  • Slow down:

>IFA market share in Equity: In 2014 34% & 2019 31% and in Debt 16% to 13% from 2014 to 2019

>Same for PMS  and profits growth

  • There is more focus on Asset Side of client : Liability side ignored
  • Geographical Limitation : Personal touch is required
  • Technology is a scare rather than enabler : cost and adaptability is an issue

Idea of United India IFA Ltd:

  • Transition:

>Provide other services : One stop shop

>Move offline to online

>Move from product to services

>Also check liability side

  • Benefits:

>Client Loyalty : More product per client

>Wider geographical reach

>Influence regulatory roadmap

>Technology adoption

>Attract and retain talent

>Lower cost

  • Monetisation through:

>PE Investment


>Sell out

  • Downsizes:

You have to :

>Be more like managers than owners

>Move from freedom to accountability

17] Intentional Leadership in Advisory Practice

Lisa A.K. Kirchenbauer.
President, Omega Wealth Management

Live Webcast Streaming

Second international speaker of the day, Lisa highlighted important skills and the tools needed for strengthening those skills:

  • Self-awareness : Assess your skills using professional tools
  • Transparency and Communication:

-Team is an Investment, not expense

-Regular, scheduled and unscheduled feedback

  • Be a student of people and management:


-Self reflection

-Getting Coaching

-Getting Feedback

  • Processes:

-Use CRM, Use company’s procedures

  • True leadership and ownership is lonely

-Find like-minded entrepreneurs to consult or commiserate

-Go for one on one coaching to have sounding board for delicate issues

  • Prepare for the next phase:

Have a clear:

-Written succession plan

-Enticing vision

18] Future of Financial Planning – The Next Decade

Michael Kitces
Publisher,, Speaker, Blogger

Live Webcast Streaming

One of the reputed mentors in the financial planning industry, Michael enlightened the audience with a few statistics and trends he has seen and will follow in future.

  • Shifting to the business of financial advice, from financial products!
  • Robo: Technology will not replace but augment human advisors.
  • Remote advisory/Virtual advisory: It enables you to save time and increase business drastically. You can have more communication in small batches!
  • Human to human social accountability is there which can never be replaced by technology!

That’s the end of one of the most well-spent day of the year!! Full of Knowledge, full of wisdom, full of inspiration to Lead by Example!

This article was authored by Mr. Rohit Bornarkar with inputs by Col. Sanjeev Govila (Retd.).


2 Thoughts to “Key Learnings from Network FP’s Annual Conference”

  1. Anita Datta Kanbargi says:

    Very well summarised. It is indeed informative and inspiring. Thank you so much for sharing your perspectives.

  2. Sandeep says:

    Congratulations Rohit. I know it a very tough task to summarize the entire conference. But you have done the best job. A person like me who was not able to attend the conference can understand the takeaways!!

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