Facilitating Decision Making - Isaac Fang CFA, ChFC, CFP
How to make investment decisions
50/70/90/100 How you perceive odds do matter
April 2, 2019
Forecasting is a craft
Chart Reading to the Right Side
July 12, 2019

It takes time to crystallise something.

It takes effort to generate good content that withstands the test of time. There is a lot of information and data floating around on the internet. New information and updates in law or changes in geopolitics can make things irrelevant, more relevant or less so.

I aim to present timeless concepts and methodologies to my readers. Being a proponent of the design driven process, this post serves to demonstrate what it really entails. The craft, the customisation and personalised advisory service that takes effort and puts you as the client, at the centre of focus most truly.

The background for this is simply to prove that what is best, is unique to each individual as well as quantifiable based on that nuanced individuality. The situation calls for it because we are now living in a world with multiple considerations, competing priorities and budgetary resource constraints. How then to strike a balance and make a decision?

Here it goes!

Facilitating Decision Making Overview First

Let us extract some observations.

  1. Everyone’s relevant factors and nuanced weighting will be different.
    • You are unique, like everyone else. (Irony)
    • Embrace your individuality
    • It is widely accepted that Singapore Savings Bonds (SSB) and Fixed Deposits (FDs) are liquid (ie rank 10 equally) but if simply because you can get hold of monies from FDs faster than SSB and as a result liquidity rank SSB 9.8 and FD 10, hey I got no issues with that.
  2. Total Weights must sum up to 100%
    • Be willing to make trade offs and take ownership of that.
  3. Not all factors are relevant (to you) having considered the trade offs.
    • Do not be afraid to assign zero.
  4. You have to put in effort.
    • The extent of the differential (10 vs 9.9) is up to you.
    • It takes effort to enter a figure into each box with deliberation and relativity assessment.

You can go deeper.

Facilitating Decision Making Overview Deeper

Going into the granular, do get hold of the full benefit illustration (because now the guaranteed yield is specified upfront) and as much product information as possible (information junkie behaviour). Specifically for insurance, comparefirst.sg is a decent starting point to select some relevant products.

Here are some things to take note.

  • Tune up sensitivity for biases from advisor reps. (if you are running thru this with a few different reps)
  • Re-ordering a person’s priorities for a sales target is not a good thing.
  • Be open minded about blending.
    • It does not always have to be an Either-Or situation.
    • 30% A and 70% B can have best of both worlds. Combinations are infinite.
  • There is no best of all time, only best at that point in time.
    • New products and new developments may or may not impact assessment of “best” even when weightings and nuanced relevant factors did not change.

I am the kind of person, who can see that 2 persons with different nuanced weightings over same relevant factors, debating over the same product as adversaries, yet find both equally valid in their own individuality.

In Clifton’s Strengths Finder, my strengths are focus, analytics, intellection, learning and individualisation. Took me a while to understand what individualisation means. But it struck me on realising how design driven process resonated with me when I understood its principles. I do not have the strength of woo (strength for salespersons) so that is why I tell people that I can give good advice but I can’t sell. A bit of an oxymoron, yes I am analytically personable. Here’s me pouring out my soul and letting the world know that I can help you think, and make a decision.

It is not my nature to force issues down your throat or deploy any form of emotional blackmail to do something you are not comfortable with. That’s the truth. Enough said.

I am good at facilitating decision making.

This methodology can be applied to plenty, know that it can lead towards specific advice. Last but not least, the advisor rep you are working with, who puts in effort to work this process through with you, deserves to be remunerated somehow. You know what I do, let me know how I help facilitate decision making.


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