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The 3 Core Pillars Of A Successful Client-Adviser Relationship

By Alex Pritchard


What does a financial adviser mean to you?

For many people, there’s not much difference between a financial adviser and a salesperson. But, this perception couldn’t be further from the truth.

In reality, your relationship with your financial adviser is much more intricate. It’s a partnership in which both parties work together, towards a shared financial goal. A trusted adviser provides helpful, informed recommendations as you plan towards your financial future.

This brings us to the big question: what underpins a beneficial client-adviser relationship? What qualities should you look out for?

At Applewood Independent, we’ve identified three crucial factors from our extensive experience as trusted advisers: 

1) Mutual honesty 

2) Confidence

3) Trust

Mutual honesty

Everyone wants to feel like their money is in safe hands, especially if they’re approaching retirement age. Our role at Applewood Independent is to support our clients to move beyond financial concerns and plan towards a fulfilling future.

However, achieving this requires honesty on both sides of the table. We typically encourage clients to be upfront about their financial objectives and the level of risk they’re prepared to take to get there. 

For instance, if your goal is to retire on £30,000 a year, it’s important to lay out the figures, and your financial adviser will work out:

  1. Whether you’re in the right financial ballpark for that goal
  2. The amount of tax you need to pay 
  3. All the intricate details that need to be tied up in order to achieve that goal

It is then up to us to make the right choices for our clients and help them achieve peace of mind, knowing that their finances are in capable hands.

This leads us onto the next important pillar of a productive client-adviser relationship.


A large part of the relationship between you and your financial adviser boils down to the confidence you have in them. Confidence that they know what they’re doing, that they can effectively maintain their portfolios and, above all, safeguard your investments.

What sets us apart from other financial advisers is that we build our own portfolios and we have active insights into market trends. We do everything we can to uncover possibilities that aren’t regularly found by other investors or advisers.

This unique trait – the ability to see value where no one else can – is what instils confidence in our clients.


A client’s trust in the financial adviser is as important as performance itself. You have to trust that the person sitting on the other side of the table has the knowledge, experience and insight required to safeguard your finances.

This may feel like crystal ball territory as no adviser – regardless of their years of experience – can be 100 per cent accurate on fund management. However, it’s important to trust that your adviser has your best interests at heart and that they can use their experience to benefit you in the decisions they make.

How we get it right at Applewood Independent

For us, Applewood Independent isn’t merely a financial business – it’s a lifestyle. Our approach to investment goes beyond numbers and trends; it’s also about being transparent and aligning your financial growth with your unique risk tolerance. 

After all, successful long-term relationships are built on honesty, trust and confidence in the other party. And the client-adviser relationship is no different. It has to benefit all parties at the end of the day.

If it’s not functioning properly, then it may be time to consider a divorce.

I hope this has been useful to you, and if you have any questions about your relationship with your adviser, I’d love to hear from you. Feel free to get in touch by emailing me at for more information.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not constitute financial advice. Applewood Independent Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. For financial advice designed for you and your specific circumstances, please contact the author using the contact details provided in this article or, alternatively, contact the Applewood Independent Ltd office on 01270 626555.

The value of your investment can go down as well as up, and you may not get back the full amount invested.

Past performance is not a guide to future performance.