So we all have expectations. When we meet people we’ve either heard a lot about, or do things we associate in certain ways, often it’s hard to separate our expectations from the reality of meeting that person.
Patrick here is a Financial Planner. I first met him a couple years ago, when I flew out to Perth to shoot a documentary for his company. Like what seems to be most people, I had friends and family whose experiences with so-called financial planners had been…horrendous. In some cases, so bad that it destroyed their savings and/or crippled their livelihood. Additionally, about a month before the video, the Commonwealth Bank had become embroiled in a scandal involving their in-house planners. Things got dodgy and it wasn’t pretty.
So with all this in mind, frankly, I was expecting to meet a self-interested tosspot who only cared about their commission and had the listening skills of a hyperactive squirrel on acid.
…expectation vs. reality.
Patrick was not what I expected. Anything but. A more genuine human being you won’t find, with a wide and eclectic range of interests, enabling him to find common ground with almost anyone. Someone more interested in talking about your life than theirs.
I mentioned before the expectation of bad experience. Financial Planning as a profession has some fairly major issues to work out. Patrick is one of the leading planners in Australia, a man whose integrity is beyond question. He’s trying to reform the business so that this commonplace bad expectation can dissolve. A big task, but something Patrick is eminently suited for.
When I first interviewed him for that documentary, Patrick mentioned how he wanted to be able to hold his head up high when walking through the streets of Perth. His reputation matters. How he treats people matters. And how he makes a difference to other people’s lives; this matters more than anything else.
Patrick, you were surprised when I asked to take a portrait of you. Well, here’s your answer – you matter. You’ve had impact on many, many people, including me.