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This month we’re speaking to Nick Platt, Managing Director at Henwood Court, an award-winning financial planning business based in Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham.

At a time when looking ahead and planning for the future couldn’t be more important, we chat to Nick about the importance of sitting down with a financial planner, looking ahead to retirement and as a published author, why he felt it important to write a book on ‘retiring’.

Nick, thanks for allowing us the time in your busy diary to have a chat.

Let’s start with a simple question – tell us more about Henwood Court and the services you provide to your clients.

Henwood Court was set up in 2004 and we describe ourselves as a firm of lifestyle based Chartered Financial Planners, specialising in helping business owners to work out their purpose. Through the smart management of their financial affairs, we help them to achieve their life objectives.

This more than often, involves our clients wanting to have the right work/life balance, ensuring that they control the business and not let the business control them – it’s not easy to get that balance right, but success never is. I really enjoy being part of a client’s journey and helping them to make a positive difference to their life and that of their family as well.

Now, not many people will know that you are a published author, with your book ‘Retireability: The Smart Executive’s Guide to Thriving in Retirement’ receiving rave reviews on Amazon. What inspired you to write the book and can you give us a brief overview of who the book is aimed at and how it can help people to ‘thrive’ in their retirement.

For over 25 years I have been helping business owners and senior executives’ transition both emotionally and financially from work into retirement. This involved both life and financial coaching.

It was my clients who actually encouraged me to put pen to paper and share my many experiences, so my coaching and experience could be shared with far more people than I could ever have the capacity to support one to one.

The book is aimed at busy executives, who, are largely very ill-prepared for the day they stop work and have very little network support available to help them with such a massive life change.

One of the main objectives when I set out to write the book, was to provide useful coaching tips, so anyone could benefit from having read it. The tips are designed to help the reader on their journey from busy worker to content retiree, both from an emotional and a financial perspective.

The book seems to have been well received, would you be tempted to write any more?

I would love to if I had the time. Maybe when I retire?

As your book focusses on coaching and giving advice on retiring, what advice would you give to a 25-year-old today, who thinks they’re too young to plan for their future?

Retirement is changing. Only the other day, we crafted a client’s retirement plan, that included working two-days a week until he is 80! He wasn’t working for the money, but the balance and satisfaction going ’out’ to work gave him.

With regards to the 25-year-old, I would tell them to invest in their education, human capital and earnings potential is the best retirement plan. Then of course, save but, don’t sit in your office all day letting life go by, live a little, have fun, create memories.

Final question Nick and it’s a reflective one, what three pieces of advice would you tell your 20-year-old self now, if you had chance?

That’s a great question, and hindsight is a powerful tool, but I suppose my three pieces of advice to my 20-year-old self would be:

  1. Don’t take life too seriously.
  2. Appreciate the now and those friends and family who are part of your life and give them the time they need.
  3. Travel and see the world – you are a long-time working, responsibility can wait.

To find out more about Henwood Court, visit their website at www.henwoodcourt.co.uk.

You can purchase Nick’s book – ‘Retireability: The Smart Executive’s Guide to Thriving in Retirement’ from Amazon.

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