Marco Polo Who is Ernesto Salvi?
Ernesto Salvi I was born 54 years ago in Avezzano in the region of Abruzzo, Italy. My parents were school teachers and I attended Liceo Classico and the faculty of law of the Libera Università degli Studi Sociali (LUISS) in Rome, where I graduated in 1989 with a thesis on Italian mutual funds. I also attended West Virginia University in 1990 and I taught Italian for one year. In 1992 I started a career as a financial advisor, worked five years for Credito Italiano (now Unicredit) and I moved to Canada in 1997. After three years with a major Canadian bank, I decided to open an office with Edward Jones in August 2000. I am married to Claudia Hein who teaches German at Simon Fraser University and we have an 18 year old daughter, Claire, who is currently studying in the U.S.
Marco Polo How would you describe what you do?
Ernesto Salvi At Edward Jones, we start by understanding what’s important to you and identify your long and short-term goals. For example, do you need to plan for retirement or for an education or both? Are you looking for income or do you need to plan for your estate? We then follow an established 5 step process to build a personalized strategy designed to help achieve your financial goals. We want to partner throughout your life. I started helping couples 18 years ago and now I am helping their children and, in many cases their grandchildren.
Marco Polo Why did you choose Edward Jones?
Ernesto Salvi Edward Jones, we serve the needs of long-term individual investors. Serving the client drives everything we do. Edward Jones believes it’s important for its associates to reflect the communities where they live and work. For me, this was important and I was attracted by the idea of opening an office in the Italian community where I can relate to my clients. My office is in East Vancouver, in the heart of where many of my clients live and work.
Marco Polo Please tell us about your typical day.
Ernesto Salvi I start my day looking at what is happening in the world. I check the news on my phone and I still read a newspaper in the morning. By 9 am I am checking in with my clients replying to emails and messages. One more look at the stock market, the bond market and the GIC market and around 10 am I begin my face-to-face meetings and phone appointments. I could not do all this without the help of Graziella Gilliatt, my branch office administrator who has been a part of my team for more than 12 years.
Marco Polo What skills do you rely most on your job?
Ernesto Salvi The most important skill as a financial advisor is listening. How do I understand your goals if I am not able to listen? Teaching skills are also crucial because I have to explain financial products in an understandable but professional way. Persistence, resilience and tenacity will also help.
Marco Polo What is the most challenging about what you do and what is the most stressful thing about creating a financial strategy?
Ernesto Salvi In my practice there are factors we control and factors we do not control. For instance I do not control monetary policy, fiscal policy, interest rates, exchange rates and what investors buy or sell on a daily basis. While not having control over the items can pose uncertainty, it is my job to ensure my clients have a long-term financial strategy with quality investments that factor in asset allocation, liquidity and a diversification mix that is appropriate for my clients’ goals and risk tolerances. Something happens every day, it’s never boring and this is one of the reasons that makes me love my job.
Marco Polo If you could go back in time, is there anything that you would change in your career path?
Ernesto Salvi Yes, I wish I had decided to come to Canada earlier to become a financial advisor.
Marco Polo What advice would you offer to someone considering your career?
Ernesto Salvi What a great question. This is a career that is extremely gratifying, especially in the long run. I will give you an example – I started explaining the benefits of Registered Education Savings Plans as soon as I opened my office 18 years ago. Today I see those plans funding my clients’ university expenses. I had parents who had tears in their eyes when they understood that their kids would have not needed student loans. So, if you decide to become a financial advisor, do it for the right reasons and that is to touch as many lives as possible and to try to make a meaningful impact to the community that you have decided to serve. Edward Jones provides a great opportunity for one to excel in their career as a financial advisor.
Marco Polo Who is Ernesto Salvi?