" . . . First, do no harm."
Hippocrates created the Hippocratic Oath as a guide for physicians of his day, and it has stood the test of time. Here is my idealistic take on a credo for the Good Financial Advisor.
The Good Financial Advisor Credo
I swear that I will fulfill the precepts of this credo, to the best of my ability and judgment.
I will strive to always place the best interests of my client above everything else, holding the trust of my clients to be sacred and inviolable.
I will strive to keep my clients from financial harm, giving great care to the preservation of assets entrusted to my keep.
I will provide quality advice on a timely basis to assist my clients in the pursuit of their goals, and keep their goals at the forefront of all of my actions.
I will take such actions as needed to enable my clients to achieve their goals. Those actions shall be clear and understandable, and shall neither be excessive, nor less than required.
I will not attempt to perform tasks beyond my abilities or training, and will seek the assistance of others when my skills are not sufficient to meet the needs of my client.
I will charge fair, reasonable and competitive fees, and fully disclose all fees in a timely fashion.
I will conduct myself in a professional manner at all times. My relationship with my clients shall be appropriate and proper in every respect.
I will keep private all that transpires between myself and my clients, and will respect their emotions, concerns and feelings.
If I do not violate this credo, I hope to enjoy life and art, the respect of others, and a legacy of admiration and affection. May I always act to uphold the highest principles of the financial advisory profession, and experience the rewards of helping those who seek financial independence.