Dearly beloved. We are gathered here today

DeadX-1To quote Shaun Sandiford of Octopus, “man that was good“. A HUGE thank you to everyone who came to #langcatdeadX, deep down in the Crypt on the Green. Briefly, because we know you are busy and all that, here are just some of the highlights!

For some reason we felt right at home in the Crypt. It’s a fantastic venue, in a cool part of London, and helped create a great atmosphere. It also gave us the amusement of watching people try to find the venue. I’m looking for a Crypt? was a FAQ. (Makes note to improve signage next time).

The Crypt dates back to 1100AD, where it was the site of the first nunnery to be built in London. It was restored in the late 18th century, with the restoration funded by the sale of annuities. Oh how the audience laughed at this when Mark Polson cracked the joke. Thankfully he didn’t use the joke about nuns he rolled out during rehearsal!

We had three fantastic guest speakers, none of whom paid or were paid to appear, so an even HUGER thank you goes to them. First up was Joe Lane from the Citizens Advice Bureau. Joe took on the subject of the advice gap, and in particular the 4 advice gaps their research has indicated exist. You can see Joe’s slides here, and the supporting research paper is available here. This session really resonated with the advisers in the room, especially the suggestion of offering “free” advice to address the gap. Everyone is supportive of improving the access to and availability of advice, but more work is needed to ensure the advice industry are fully on board.

Next up was John Roe, Head of Multi-Asset at LGIM. John delivered a fascinating presentation on behavioural psychology and the impacts on investing. In particular, how our in-built human biases can influence us when setting goals, investing and reviewing our investments. Something for Proposition and Marketing heads to think about when designing consumer facing services. John slides are available here, with supporting material here.

DeadX-7Our final speaker was Pete Trainor, Director of Human Centred Design for Nexus UK. As Pete puts it, we are not digitising investing, we are investing in a digital world? and his session brilliantly exposed just how much work financial services has to do if it is to engage with digital weirdos! Pete started by getting the audience to swap their mobile phones with the person sat next to them, and then gave everyone 60 seconds to look through their neighbours phone. The audible gasps of panic instantly demonstrated the emotional effect technology can have on people. Financial services needs to recognise this and create services that inspire.

A special thanks is due at this point to Annalise Toberman, who was sat next to Rory Percival of the FCA and had his phone for 60 seconds. Fortunately (or perhaps unfortunately) she was too professional to look at his emails!

Pete’s slides are available here. You can also see his recent TedX talk on youtube if you want to see him in action.

So, that’s it, our last event of 2015. Thanks again to everyone who came, and especially the speakers. And don’t worry, we are already planning our next event!