What Do You Want To Know About How Lesley Dewar Created This Helicopter Adventure?
What A Party! What A Blast!
If there is one thing the financial planning industry knows how to do well, it is how to party! And what a party we had, when Lesley Dewar “retired” as a financial planner after 26 years, to launch Stories My Nana Tells! And there are no photos!
In June, 2009, 97 Clients and 29 Friends let Lesley Dewar introduce Amanda Doyle & Bruce Ponting as the new financial planners for her practice and then joined in the launch of Lesley’s new online venture Stories My Nana Tells
As Lesley tells it:
“Two things I forgot about retirees: they always turn up on time (by 4:30 about 70 were already there), and they stay! We said we would party from 4:30 till 9:00, and they took me at my word!”
Andrew Wright (PIS) was very busy helping to put out more tables and chairs as the clients streamed through the door, being met by Amanda and Lesley and taking a lucky number for a door prize.
The Guildford Landing Function Centre was bright and cheerful, the tables set with white linen and decorated with red & green balloons; a big banner for the new business Stories My Nana Tells was hung on the wall. Professional Investment Services (PIS) signs reminded our clients that Bruce and Amanda were licensed Financial Planners, too; the fabulous picture (and only framed one in existence) of the Navigator ladies was out the front by the entry. There was one of Lesley herself from her “glamour” shots by Gary Sarre up front and centre as you walked in the door. (Some of the guys did ask for an autographed copy!) The one we have here is NOT the one which called for autographs.
Her favourite photo of Robbie (Growly Granddad) was off to one side, where he would have been, as always, making sure everything went to plan. But he was there, in spirit, as always.
Her Dad, Bluey Nancarrow (Nono – one of our story characters) was fantastic, never mind for being 91 years old and having had a full knee reconstruction at age 90 – before he was photographed climbing up onto the roof of Warren & Liza’s new extensions!
He was quickly pressed into service, handing out “loot bombs” (chocolate; hand cream and bath salts) to all the ladies and PIS carry bags to everyone.
They contained the latest edition of The Swan Magazine which featured a story about Lesley’s retirement as a Financial Planner; a current PIS Financial Services Guide and Bruce and Amanda’s Advisor Profiles. Along with a business card for the new venture, there was also a block of 70% dark chocolate (antioxidants are important at our age) or a model helicopter to celebrate the launch Lesley’s new business. (There was some swapping going on – too, over the chocolate and helicopters!)
Lesley had set up a continuous slide show, the first part a reminder of a PIS Seminar done at the Hyatt a few years ago – and, of course, that was to introduce Amanda to her clients as the new bus driver on their financial planning journey – followed up with a segment to introduce Stories My Nana Tells.
It featured photos of Lesley in and out of helicopters around the world, including Hawaii and New Zealand as well as being a tribute to her family and friends, including a photo of one ‘adopted’ grandson, Ian. It did include a couple of photos of her, hard at work at PIS and AFA conferences, as well!
There was live entertainment, with a great singer called Miss Poppy – who sang everything from rock and roll, to blues, jazz and pops. She kept everything bopping along and only handed over the microphone to Lesley for the drawing of the door prizes and a very short thank you at the end of the evening.
Four couples won helicopter rides over Perth as door prizes, and there were other gifts for “grey nomads” including four autographed books of photography by Bob Litchfield – Master Photographer
One of the helicopter rides was won by Lesley’s very first client, from Perth Building Society days, Mike Read and it was great to watch old friends reunite through the magic of “financial planning nesting” with retirees and staff from various employer groups catching up on current lives and old times.
One client suggested Lesley’s bad neck came from peering into all those “nests” over the years – keeping the baby birds safe, which she rather liked. The other noticeable thing was that she wore flat shoes – and now everyone knows how short Lesley really is! Her answer was that if she had worn flat shoes and had to crane her head up to look at all of those tall men who were her clients, she would probably have had to retire five years earlier. One client arrived, a little perturbed at the size of the crowd and said “but I won’t know anyone here” and to her surprise, was quickly reunited with some old workmates she had not seen for many years.
Everyone said they had a great time, the clients absolutely loved Amanda and several of them asked Lesley if Amanda was actually her “Plan A” – because they did not want to have to go to a “Plan B”. Fortunately, she could assure them that she was her “Plan A” – “A” for Amanda. Her “Plan B” is Bruce Ponting, in any event, so they have nothing to worry about!
Lesley was happy to pay tribute to her Dad and Warren and Lisa at the end of the night, too, because family is everything. With a couple of weeks in which to actually close down the office and move out, it was a fitting way to end a long and happy twenty six year career as a financial planner.
Lesley is looking forward to catching up with friends for a coffee and a chat – and to watching a new circle of friends and clients grow through the new venture. No photos? “We were so busy on the night, we forgot!” Lesley said. But there is one photo, from the official PIS retirement lunch at Jo-Jo’s on the Jetty – just to prove that it did really happen!
PS: The next time you see a helicopter overhead, you might just wonder if Lesley is aboard!