At AAB Wealth we recognise and support that our team members have their own goals and aspirations, which is why we are delighted to welcome Claire Marston back to the AAB Wealth team.

Claire decided to scratch her itch and try something new in March last year. We caught up with Claire to find out what skills she developed while working in the emergency services, why she chose to return to AAB Wealth and what her new role as Client Service Support entails.

I joined AAB wealth as an intern in the summer of 2017. After completing my business management degree at the University of Glasgow, I returned as a graduate in August 2018, making me the third year of graduates that AAB Wealth had welcomed. I had not always known what I wanted to do, but when I was looking for internships, AAB Wealth stood out.

During the application and interview process, the main thing that really attracted me to AAB Wealth was their organisational culture. The internship gave me an even better feel for the business and cemented my view. Everyone was lovely and I had a great gut feeling about AAB Wealth. So, when I was asked to come back as a graduate, it was an easy decision! It felt more as if I’d come across it by surprise because everything just fell into place very naturally.

During the first two years working at AAB Wealth, I achieved my Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning. It really is a great place to build your career. But early last year that niggling feeling of not knowing exactly what I wanted to do as a career came back, so I made the decision to try something new, and moved to a new job in the emergency services. I left the business in March 2021 but remained a close friend of the firm, kept up to date with colleagues and of course had one eye on how the business was growing and progressing.

That’s the thing about AAB Wealth, the team genuinely are different. Everyone just wants the best for their clients and for each other. It’s because of these genuine relationships that it felt really natural to approach the team about returning to the business late last year.

I am glad that I went to try something new, rather than always wonder ‘what if’, but I am so grateful for the support of AAB Wealth and I am delighted to be back. Of course, I was a bit nervous, but leaving on good terms removed any fears and I felt confident enough to just get in touch directly and explore the possibility of returning to the business.

Returning to AAB Wealth was a very different experience compared to when I first joined. Like a lot of other things in AAB, Covid, while it’s been disruptive, has also streamlined a lot of processes. I expected it to be a bit more clunky, but honestly within a couple of days, I felt reintegrated again. It was really easy.

I was hired back to train as a paraplanner, and this will ‘officially’ kick off in April. Until then, I’m supporting the Client Services Support team. This means I’m essentially a point of contact for clients and support the advisors and paraplanners with any information that they may need to make sure that all processes run smoothly while focusing on making sure the clients have the best possible experience and making it as easy as possible for them. The client facing side of the role has always been my favourite part of the job, so I’m looking forward to being able to be back in the office and get more in person meetings arranged.

Working within the emergency services over the last year developed my experience in dealing with the public, having difficult discussions with people, conflict resolution and coping well under pressure. All skills that feed into my role at AAB Wealth.

I’m really excited for the new challenge that my new role will bring and when the time comes, getting back to exams as well. But I think more so than anything else, it’s just nice to be back within the culture and to see the team again, as everything still feels very friendly and familiar, and I don’t feel like that has changed even with covid and people working from home, so that’s lovely.

Although AAB Wealth’s culture has remained the same, there are also some notable differences, even from when I left last year. The team is so much bigger and there’s a lot of new faces, which is great. In addition to their growth, AAB Wealth have utilised the challenges that covid presented to really advance the technology side of the company. I think these improvements have provided a lot more flexibility. Certainly, when it comes to meetings with clients, but also with how we work. In terms of being able to choose where we work and when we work. This flexibility has allowed me to prioritise and balance my work and personal life, giving me time to do the things that I love, including hillwalking and spending time in the kitchen cooking.

My journey from intern to trainee paraplanner hasn’t been as conventional as others, but I wouldn’t change a thing. As an intern, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do, but now, I am sure and taking a chance on a new opportunity helped cement that. AAB Wealth wouldn’t encourage everyone to follow the same path as me, but they do recognise that as individuals we have our own goals and aspirations and it’s great that they support this. It’s this culture that has attracted so many new starts to join AAB Wealth since I left, 5 to be exact.

So much has changed since I was first introduced to the business back in 2017, but to me it still stands out as a great place to work – whether that’s as an individual, a client or a business partner. We are truly focused on all playing our part to do the best for the team and everyone within it, and that extends to how we deliver for clients. with so much exciting change and growth achieved across the business I am excited to see what 2022 has in store, and I’m delighted to be part of it.