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What makes a good fund manager?

Just as there is with any other job, there are certain qualities that make a good fund manager.  Below is a list of the qualities you should look for before you hire someone for fund management services.

Ambition to be the best

Fund management is not an easy field to be in.  To be truly great at it, one has to want to climb the ladder and be the best.

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Knowing what sets you apart

How would your fund manager answer the question, “What makes you different than the rest?” If they can’t answer that question, outlining where their expertise and competitive edge lie, they may not be the best person for the job.

Confidence and conviction

To be a good fund manager, one need to have and exude confidence. No one wants to trust their financial future in the hands of someone who doesn’t back up his advice with conviction. Your fund manager should always be able to act with confidence and to back up the advice he gives you.

People skills

This is so important. Dealing with people’s money is an emotional task.  People get attached to their money and they will need you to tell them clearly and concisely why your ideas as to where to invest are sound. To be able to interact with clients effectively good communication skills are key.  Without great people skills, you’ll never be a good fund manager.

Risk management

Another of the most important traits of a good fund manager is the ability to manage risk.  Yes, a certain level of risk is involved in successful investing, but you also have to know when to tell your clients to cut their losses. Knowing which risks are worth taking and which are not is absolutely critical. In addition, you also have to be able to handle risk without stress.  Did you advise your client to take a potentially very profitable risk, based on your research? Can you sleep at night knowing that that decision could potentially go terribly wrong? If not, fund management probably isn’t the right field for you.

Out-of-the-box thinking

There is no one right way to manage a portfolio. Give the same portfolio to ten different managers and you’ll get ten different opinions. There is no 1-2-3 program for investing. Find a fund manager who will think outside the box and find creative ways to help your portfolio grow. This is particularly important in challenging times, when creative thinking could boost a faltering portfolio out of a slump.

If you are going to invest, you’ll probably need to hire someone to manage your portfolio who knows what he is doing. More than just knowledge, the traits outlined above are the kinds of things that set a great fund manager apart from an average one.  Don’t settle for average where your money is concerned. Find a fund manager who exceeds your expectations.

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