Simon Jennings - Spear's Magazine

Simon Jennings

Smith & Williamson

Simon Jennings
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‘It’s a more appropriate firm for me to work towards retirement,’ Simon Jennings tells Spear’s two years after his move to Smith & Williamson from Rawlinson & Hunter, where he was a partner for more than three decades.

Jennings is impressed by the ‘very professional and very civilised’ team of partners at S&W. From his perspective the profession remains in rude health. ‘The good ones never die,’ he says.

What has the senior consultant learned in his long time at the crease? Jennings replies simply: ‘No two private clients are alike.’ He adds that personality, family circumstances, plans for the future, and risk appetite of a given client are all things an adviser needs to consider before tailoring the right advice. ‘You’re not only dealing with the Lord of the Manor so to speak, but you’re dealing with complex family situations.’

Clients who come to Jennings have such complicated tax affairs that they require advisers to have ‘a broad awareness of their circumstances’. It’s thus important, he adds, not to fall into the trap of becoming too theoretical: ‘You have to prepare to be adaptable, responsive and think laterally.’

He adds that ‘good advice and trusted advisers’ are now more important than ever, with HMRC’s tax investigations now ‘extreme’.