The backing of a good network has seen me through

I was interested to read last week that just 76 firms applied to be authorised to trade in 2009.

I am relatively new to the industry. I qualified in May 2006 and am now self-employed, with a fantastic network behind me, namely Home of Choice.

I had my best year to date in 2009 and am glad that a lot of other advisers have decided it’s time to retire or that the industry is not for them.

I had to dig deep last year but I wanted to survive and succeed. I don’t want this industry to be tarnished by individuals who wanted a quick buck and then abandoned ship when the going got tough. Harsh but true.

Obviously, there have been some genuine casualties but I was made redundant in 2008 and I didn’t give up. I went on alone.

The business is still there if you know where to look for it – and that is where my network came in, being able to educate me in this regard.

KATHY OWEN