Having seen out my first week in my new home at the lang cat I decided to take some time to reflect upon the experience to date. That and the fact that I was locked out of the office meant that there wasn’t much else to be getting on with for a while.

Much has been made of how different it would be compared to what I’m used to so that seems a sensible starting point. To clarify, I’m used to Lifeco Land: big offices that you’ll never see all of, lots of highly structured meetings and an IT department at the end of the phone. I spent many happy years there but decided that it was time for a change and now find myself here in the land of the lang cat: teeny office (with a limited supply of keys), ‘unstructured’ meetings and a what now? IT department? The Windows helpdesk number is on the side of the box, off you go!.

Different and new are often seen as challenges, a bit scary, and they can be. Being a planner and a list maker by nature my approach is to research options, likely scenarios, talk to those who know more than I do and, without wishing to get all ‘Sound of Music’, it feels less scary when I’m armed with that information.

I’ve my triumphs, those who know me know that I am not exactly blessed when it comes to techy skills but I have persevered and have now mastered! the coffee maker. Priorities. It’s not just an O2 strapline. Less smooth have been my adventures in commuting. A newbie on Lothian buses I got my Ridacard and picked up a timetable. All good. In the first week I’ve been stood on, my Ridacard suddenly decided not to work and I seriously considered missing my stop as I didn’t have the heart to make an old lady get up to let me out when it had taken her the better part of ten minutes to sit down. Some scenarios cannot be planned for.

For me, this is a timely reminder that our business is one of constant change. Moreover, it highlights that for many of us the point of what we do is supporting people through the ‘different and new’ world of financial planning and decision making. For them, it’s about as scary as it needs to be making decisions that can influence financial security for the rest of their life when they know little or nothing about the products or companies. We have access to the options, the scenarios and we can make it all a lot less scary. Not exactly ‘whiskers on kittens’ but I’m contractually obliged to throw a cat analogy in somewhere and you take the point. Some of us are more directly involved than others but we all have a role to play â?? scary as it might seem, we are the ones who know more about it.

On that note, the coffee maker just started beeping at me and I have no clue why!