Alice Browne on educating her clients and her community

Karen Bristow
04 Apr 2019

Alice Browne on educating her clients and her community

Dixon Advisory’s Alice Browne (nee Cowper) may be young, but much like her team, she is wise beyond her years with deep financial insight that has seen her career go from strength to strength.

Alice studied a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Finance and International Business at the University of Sydney, before kickstarting her career as an analyst in Dixon Advisory’s Financial Advisory team. “While I enjoyed the strategic side of advice, it wasn’t really aligned with my interests,” Alice begins, noting that of particular interest to her was the investment space. “I later moved across to the Investment Advisory team, where I’ve now been for several years.” In her current role as Associate Director, Alice works closely with the Investment Committee to skilfully tailor investment advice for clients. “Although I’ve been with the firm for seven years, clients are sometimes taken aback by my youth,” she explains. “A common misconception of my role is that I’m personally providing recommendations or adopting short-term strategies – when in reality, we work with the backing and views of a committee of highly experienced leaders within the industry and ultimately focus on long-term investment strategies.”

"Wouldn’t it be better if all children were introduced to financial matters earlier on so they were more equipped for adulthood?"

Financial capability has also been a topic of interest for Alice, who says she learned important lessons and life skills from her high school economics teacher – learnings that not only encouraged her to study commerce, but which also lent themselves to her current role, where she works closely with clients to help them better understand complex financial concepts and how they can impact everyday lives. In fact, Alice was recently invited back to her high school to speak on an International Women’s Day panel – just one way she has been able to give back to her community. Alice notes, however, that while she was lucky to learn about economic issues, there is still a lack of proper financial education available to young women. “My sister recently set up her first super fund and had all these questions about bank accounts, credit cards and interest rates – things she might have learned about earlier on in school,” Alice says. “Wouldn’t it be better if all children were introduced to financial matters earlier on so they were more equipped for adulthood?”

"It’s quite rewarding when you share a client’s journey and see them grow in confidence and achieve their goals..."

However, Alice contends that learning about finance should be available to anyone – no matter their stage or age. But while this isn’t always possible, Alice says she’s more than happy to answer questions to help guide clients on their wealth-creation journeys. “I often receive questions about market volatility in the midst of trade wars and Brexit, along with questions from clients wanting a better understanding of their investment structures,” she shares, noting that it’s important to bring colour to investments to make them easier to understand so clients can then appreciate what factors and current events are driving them. “All in all, it’s quite rewarding – not only when you see how your advice has helped improve a situation, but when you share a client’s journey and see them grow in confidence and achieve their goals.”

Maintaining open lines of communication is important to helping Alice more effectively make investment suggestions based on her clients’ unique objectives. But it’s not all business and investments. “I also like to know what’s happening in a client’s life – including the big milestone events such as buying a new house or having a grandchild,” she says. “It not only assists with my planning as an adviser, but it also strengthens our relationships which is nice.” However, this works both ways. After getting married late last year, Alice says she was overwhelmed with kind messages and wedding photo requests from clients. “It was really special – almost like hearing from extended family,” she adds.

When she’s not working with the Investment Committee to tailor investment suggestions for clients, Alice enjoys cooking and entertaining family and friends at home. She also likes travelling, having previously spent time in the United Kingdom and Italy, as well as reading books and spending time outdoors. As a Randwick, Sydney local, you might even spot Alice enjoying some downtime at her favourite nearby parks, Centennial or Queens Park, or beaches, Clovelly and Bronte.

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