Career development is very important to the team here at First Financial. We love to see our people grow and extend their skills as they build their career.
Just over 12 months ago, Sean Curran made the decision to follow his ambitions and left First Financial to gain experience in a much larger financial organisation.
We are thrilled to welcome him back into the First Financial family as our new Advice Team and Compliance Manager.
Sean started his career in a small boutique portfolio management firm in Brisbane. He was involved in creating customised portfolios and gained valuable investment experience.
When he moved to Melbourne in 2012, he spent a year working for Colonial First State in transition administration which gave him an insight into the operational side of the finance industry.
He became part of the First Financial Associate Adviser team in 2013 and immediately found a supportive environment that would help him grow. Three and a half years working alongside Principal, Chris Crough, gave him with the knowledge to step into a Financial Adviser role himself.
Progressing from the adviser position he tested his skills in the technical side of the company and moved to paraplanning which is the team that produces client Statements of Advice. Sean says,
“The First Financial management team is very good at accommodating people’s career goals. They help you figure out where you can best be utilised and where you really want to go.”
Gaining valuable experience
In early 2018, Sean made the difficult decision to move on from First Financial to pursue a career within advice compliance. He recognised that to expand his knowledge and develop his skills he needed a new challenge. The organisation he joined had 120 financial advisers and 60 paraplanners. It was significantly larger than First Financial and gave him the chance to immerse himself in a highly demanding environment. He tells us,
“I really wanted to experience working in that ‘big firm’ mentality. I was responsible for policies for 120 advisers… creating advice templates, answering all the compliance and technical queries from the team. I ran training sessions and developed all the collateral. It was a really great experience and I think I’m much better for it, certainly better than I would have been if I had just moved into the role directly within First Financial.”
Returning to First Financial
It is not uncommon for past staff members to make their way back to First Financial. With the departure of the current Compliance Manager, the opportunity arose for Sean to consider returning to the company. And while he was enjoying his role in the large firm, the people and culture at First Financial were hard to resist. Sean explains,
“I know the company really well and I love working at First Financial… it’s the people that got me across the line to come back.
The career progression is so important… I’ve seen how great it is… I’ve had the chance to experience four different roles. They will support you to grow and develop. Where they see talent, they will try to retain it and they find a role that is most suited to you.
It’s also the quality of advice. It is extremely high for the industry. Our processes are well above what I’ve seen out there. Plus, being able to run the compliance side of things on my own… it’s given me the opportunity to step up in my career.”
In the coming months, Sean will embrace a range of new projects as he reviews efficiencies and considers new technologies that could be helpful for the team and clients of First Financial.
We welcome Sean back and look forward to supporting him through the next chapter in his career.