A good and reliable financial advisor is one of the essential steps for professional football players to protect their wealth. It is, however, not an easy choice to make.
Also in basketball the same problem arises. FIBA, the International Basketball Federation, has compiled a financial guide. This guide aims to provide support to all FIBA members for many of the possible financial obstacles that a basketball player may encounter in his career. Although this manual is quite brief, it provides for a questionnaire that each basketball player can use as a guideline if he wishes to make use of the services of a financial adviser. We advise to use this questionnaire when you appoint a confidential adviser.
What will your service cost and how will you be paid?
Each consultant invoices for work in his own way. You must know exactly where you stand. If commissions will be paid, will it be a fixed commission or a compensation based on the assets?
What are your references?
Obviously, this is of vital importance. Holding a specific degree or having completed a particular training does not automatically make you a specialist in a particular field. A brief experience of a few years is therefore certainly insufficient to become a specialist in a specific market.
What kind of experience do you have?
A consultant may have experience as a lawyer or consultant for wealthy people, but footballers are a very particular kind of clientele. Relevant experience in the sports world is essential. A good question is to request candidates to provide a description of the type of client with whom they normally work.
Also always ask them whom they have worked with (if they are permitted to disclose this) and whether you could speak to them.
What services do you offer and how often do you meet your clients?
This must be very clear. The services that are offered must match with your needs.
The frequency of contact with clients also quickly gives an idea of how realistic a collaboration is. If you are often abroad due to European competitions and the consultant wants to meet you every week, he must in principle, travel with you everywhere. This is not always realistic or practical.
Do you have any questions for me?
A consultant must have the capacity to understand your needs and concerns. This can only happen if he asks the right questions so that the objective of the cooperation can be understood and achieved. Possibly, you will need to jointly determine these goals. A consultant who does not ask any questions and does not take into account your specific needs, will offer you a standard package. This is not ideal.
In our book The Bankrupt Footballer – 50 guidelines to take control over the business side of your football career, we explain in further detail the importance of a good financial advisor.