(As originally posted on LinkedIn, June 28 2017)

To Canada 150 and beyond:
the role of government and the public sector

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By Gregory Smith, EY Canada’s Wealth and Asset Management Leader

Ahead of #Canada150, we’re reflecting on what we’ve accomplished and what awaits us in the next century and a half. We’re asking ourselves the kinds of #BetterQuestions that challenge, inspire and unlock new solutions.

Q: How is wealth and asset management embracing innovation?

A: As we observe the many challenges and opportunities within the sector, innovation will continue to emerge from all directions at an accelerated pace. We’ll see more digital advice, the widespread application of artificial intelligence, and the convergence of well-being and wealth management.

For example, your likelihood being diagnosed with certain illnesses could determine how you manage your money in anticipation of healthcare costs. Eventually, advances in technology will better enable our advisors to address clients’ financial and life needs. Instead of spending time on routine tasks, they will focus more of their attention on helping clients achieve their life goals like education, family, business ventures and travel.

Q: What role does entrepreneurship play?

A: In 1867, Canadian entrepreneurs were creating wealth by boldly transitioning from lumber, mining, and fishing to more modern ventures such as building factories, shipyards and railways. This thriving entrepreneurship was crucial to our emerging economy.

Canada’s wealth and asset managers continue to support Canada’s newest generation of entrepreneurs as they’re pushing today’s business boundaries and demanding more global access, greater digital connectivity and innovative investment solutions.  

Q: How can diversity move this sector forward?

A: To continue its growth trajectory, wealth and asset management must embrace Canada’s diversity. With more technology involved in delivering wealth management, people will be involved in the parts of the business that make human beings, human: empathy, creativity and diversity.

A variety of vantage points, experiences and backgrounds will lead to more innovative solutions and better results. And it goes both ways – recognizing the importance of diversity within the firm, as well as how to better address the needs of diverse clients.

Innovation, entrepreneurship and diversity are vital to Canada’s future success. Those who seize the opportunities that arise from disruption in every sector are poised to lead in the years ahead. Happy Canada Day!

What does the future hold for your business and how do you plan to get there?

The views reflected in this article are the views of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the global EY organization or its member firms.