When CTT Group recently hosted a roundtable for the Coventry & Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce, the last thing Director and co-founder Bob Massey expected was an ambush. “I’m normally the one standing at the front, ambushing somebody else,” Bob says, as he recounts the surprise presentations he’s led to celebrate significant events in the lives of his colleagues.
However, 2023 marks Bob’s 40th year working as an Independent Financial Advisor, something well-deserving of a special recognition award from the Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce, Shevaun Haviland.
A director of CTT Group since 2003, Bob specialises in the field of taxation and trusts. His 40 years’ experience as an IFA, and Trust and Estate Practitioner (TEP) have seen him change the face of estate planning and financial services alongside his CTT co-founder, Clive Ponder.
Bob’s early career success
The first place that Bob showcased his leadership skills was on the school Rugby pitch. “Rugby was important to me early on,” he recalls. “Captaining senior rugby from age 17, I was used to helping, guiding, and managing people who were older than me. I found my relationship with older clients, providing them with financial advice, came easy.”
After only seven years of embarking on his career as a financial advisor, Bob became the youngest ever branch manager of Legal and General, aged 29. He was eager to follow this success by carving out his own path. “The best decision was leaving Legal and General and setting up on my own,” he says. “I enjoyed teaching people, but I always wanted direct contact with clients. That’s what I enjoy and find most rewarding.”
Founding a new business
This ambition to engage more directly with clients saw Bob and his friend from rugby, Clive Ponder, establish their own company in 2003.
Their joint aim was to combine estate planning and financial support within one private practice, providing clients with a holistic service. Twenty years later, CTT Group is renowned for being a unique, multi-disciplinary network that serves both professional advisors and private clients.
“For professionals who don’t have internal expertise in the area, we provide that expertise,” Bob explains. “We go in and become a multi-disciplinary partner.”
CTT have added to their service offering with their own software that’s tailored to the sector: CTT Legacy. This innovation combines document drafting and management with a secure customer portal, providing a complete business solution for its users. And it’s something that is constantly being added to and updated. “The driving force behind CTT is improvement. There’s always another step ahead that improves your services, whether that’s B2B or B2C,” says Bob.
Leading by example
Whilst his job is to deliver professional advice, Bob’s approach is personal. “As an advisor, your strength is to be a listener first,” he reveals. “A client often doesn’t know what the problem is or what they need. We help clients identify that, then offer strategies to help them achieve balance.”
The satisfaction Bob gains in resolving the financial issues of his clients is just as rewarding as leading his team. “It’s a prize every time you watch someone you’ve brought on board succeed and seeing what they become,” he says. “You see people with hidden strengths who lack confidence; as a team leader, you give them that confidence.”
As well as inspiring his colleagues in the office, Bob also sets an impressive example outside of work. In June this year, he took on the incredible challenge of cycling the 500km from London to Paris, raising over £2,000 for the charity Care Leukaemia.
Keeping on track
A 40-year career is bound to present obstacles, but Bob sees these as chances to learn and grow. “It’s easy to get pushed in a different direction, personally and for the business. But if you see that happening you bring it back to what you intended – providing great service for clients and a great environment for the people you work with,” he says.
“I’ve learnt to make any decision in any circumstance for the right reason. You’re here for a good time, not long time,” he smiles, “so make decisions that are going to benefit your family, friends, and clients. Decide what journey you’re on and be consistent in what you do, then you’ll be happy.”
This article was submitted to be published by CTT Group as part of their advertising agreement with Today’s Wills and Probate. The views expressed in this article are those of the submitter and not those of Today’s Wills and Probate.