The number of financial advisers involved in the Personal Finance Society’s mentor scheme Connect, as either a mentor or a mentee, increased by a third in the first quarter of 2020.

The mentor scheme Connect, which helps members of the professional body form mentorship relationships with other professionals from anywhere in the world, has attracted more than 1,300 active users in 12 months. One-in-10 of those who signed up to the scheme during the first quarter of the year, when many places began entering lockdown, were from outside of the UK.

Of the mentors in the scheme, 37% are Fellows of the PFS, 22% are certified diploma qualified members and 41% are associate level members.
PFS chief executive Keith Richards said: “Coronavirus hasn’t stopped financial advice professionals from wanting to continue to develop their skills and progress their careers. There can be little substitute for experience and soft skills to compliment technical competence and both mentor and mentee can gain invaluable insight into the workings of the wider profession from taking part in the Connect e-mentoring scheme.

“The benefit of using a digital platform means that the sharing of professional knowledge is not restricted by geography or can be hampered by measures to slow the spread of the coronavirus.”

Hunter Aitkenhead and Walker Chartered financial planner Alisdair Walker is a mentor and mentee with the programme and said it helped expand his network.

He said: “It is really hard to overstate how important I think mentoring is. I advise any personal finance professional to do it. It can be difficult for people to find mentors outside of their organisation but Connect is full of professionals that not only have the experience you could need but have also put up a signal saying: ‘I am willing to help you.'”

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