Designations

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Oct 25, 2008 7:00 pm

I'd like to know the boards opinion on working towards earning various designations within out field. Of course the CFP seems to be the top if not one of the top designations one could earn.


However what about other designation such as AAMS (Accredited Asset Management Specialist), or AWMA (Accredited Wealth Manager Advisor) and finally the CRPC (Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor). Are these worth the time to pursue?
Oct 25, 2008 7:23 pm

Ask your new employer what THEY think about different designations.  Will they reimburse your educational costs?

 
Will they allow you to get the CFP or not?  (Most B/D's are restricting new people from pursuing the CFP due to it's increased compliance and ethical standards over your standard licensing requirements.)
 
Your objective shouldn't be to "collect letters", but to enhance your EDUCATION.
 
"Get all the education you can, then keep it to yourself."  - John Savage, CLU
Oct 25, 2008 8:52 pm

CFP will help you market yourself (i know i;ll get slammed on that comment, but dont really care) The knowledge you get will help you alot.

The CRPC is the retirement planning slice of the CFP program and the knowledge will be very helpful.

If you do 401k and other qual and non qual business, the College for Fin Planning (which offers the CRPC, also offes another designation that could be helpful, i think its CRPS- Chartered Retirement Plan Specialist. It focuses on plans for companies/employees, unlike the CRPC which focuses on planning for individuals.

Oct 25, 2008 11:04 pm

I would go after the CFP if you can.  It is the most recognized and respected by your target market.

Oct 25, 2008 11:21 pm

I have an AAMS but I am working towards my CFP. The AAMS is pretty much valueless you might consider it a elementary school version of the CFP.

Oct 26, 2008 12:35 pm
Ferris Bueller:
Bud Fox:

I would go after the CFP if you
can.  It is the most recognized and respected by your target
market.




If you target market is people that know what it is, but the vast majority of people don't.





Readers--especially new advisors and those hoping to be come an
advisor--should NEVER lose sight of the fact that the poster calling
himself Ferris Bueller boasts about how little education he has.



He is not qualified to earn a CFP, consequently he dismisses those who do as having wasted their time.



What he has to say is never worth considering.  Pay attention to
those of us who do not brag about how uneducated we are and how much we
can screw or clients and get away with.



There are always rotten apples in any industry--sadly there are too many Ferris Buellers.  They should be shunned.

Oct 26, 2008 1:27 pm

Once you have 25 million maybe (CFP) Until then you should not dilute your prospecting or you will fail.

Oct 26, 2008 2:13 pm
Provocative Put:
Ferris Bueller:
Bud Fox:

I would go after the CFP if you
can.  It is the most recognized and respected by your target
market.




If you target market is people that know what it is, but the vast majority of people don't.





Readers--especially new advisors and those hoping to be come an
advisor--should NEVER lose sight of the fact that the poster calling
himself Ferris Bueller boasts about how little education he has.



He is not qualified to earn a CFP, consequently he dismisses those who do as having wasted their time.



What he has to say is never worth considering.  Pay attention to
those of us who do not brag about how uneducated we are and how much we
can screw or clients and get away with.



There are always rotten apples in any industry--sadly there are too many Ferris Buellers.  They should be shunned.


This is getting more absurd by the post.

Putsy thinks people should not pay attention to what Ferris says, because he lacks some designation or course of study that Putsy deems to be critical.

Meanwhile, the reality is that Ferris has demonstrated that he not only knows enough to be an FA, he has demonstrated that he IS a successful FA.  And Putsy?

Putsy has not been an FA for 30-odd years, when he was unable to survive as an FA so moved into "branch management."

And he still cries out for people to pay attention to him.  

Infallible logic of the Puts.

Oct 26, 2008 2:17 pm

YTB, the knowledge is very valuable.  The letters aren't.


Oct 26, 2008 5:39 pm
anonymous:

YTB, the knowledge is very valuable.  The letters aren't.


 
Thanks for putting the topic back on track. It's something I will consider in the next few years though.
 
Regarding Ferris not qualifying for the CFP, does that mean he isn't a college grad? I'm new to the board so I'm not sure what else you might mean here. But if that's your point then it is nearly irrelevant. I know plenty of advisors - at least two @ MS and a handful more at other wirehouses in my area that are not college graduates. They're amazing advisors who have done exceptionally well. It seemed like that was a not so veiled shot at Ferris that I find irrelevant to the discussion.
Oct 26, 2008 5:50 pm

Most of Putsy's posts of late have been irrelevant.  

Oct 26, 2008 8:47 pm

The points made about interrupting your prospecting time are valid, although there is a solution. I recommend attending an asynchronous online environment, meaning that not only is instruction given online but not confined to any particular time. (Basically you complete at your own pace rather than show up for an instructor led session.) I've been taking the Boston University/Boston Institute of Finance online courses and it has been an excellent method of delivery while not interfering with other duties. I'm sure there are other good choices to knock out the prerequisite work but this is the one I'm familiar with. I'd say do it, but do it in this way, otherwise you will waste a lot of time. I started the courses in May and should finish up in December, giving me time to rehash some, take a one-week refresher, and sit for the exam in March or June. Not bad from a time standpoint.

 
Regaring the point of if the information is valuable independent of the designation, I would say unequivicably yes. I have already been able to use a number of pieces of information which have proven useful and led to business. I'd say this is especially the case regarding estate issues and taxation.  Previously if someone brought up a topic (say AMT or forming a particular Trust) I could give a half assed general anser vague enough not to make myself into an idiot and then pass the buck to an accountant or attorney.
 
None of the information I've encountered is particularly "difficult" but it's all useful. (I'd say this situation is inversely proportional to the CFA for example, which is hard as hell but not particularly relevant to this side of the biz.)
 
I have found that the more objective information I can provide the easier it is to close. People react much more favorably to being told "this is the way it is from a tax or estate standpoint and therefore it makes sense to do x" rather than hearing about your market forcast or other opinions, which have no more or less validity than anyone elses.
 
If I remember correctly, WM will reimburse for the CFP. I'm not sure if there are strings attached to time employed or institution you take the courses from. If you're getting it covered anyway, I'd start sooner rather than later.
Oct 27, 2008 1:41 pm

I have passed the CFP® exam and I have the CRPC designation.  It is my opinion that the CFP® should be a minimum requirement to be a financial advisor.  Unfortunately since there is no such minimum requirement, the majority of people calling themselves financial advisors are little more than salespeople.  With that said, you will not be able to use the CFP® designation until you have three years of experience.  If you are seeking knowledge, take an accelerated CFP® course.  If you are seeking some knowledge and you want initials after your name, do the CRPC.  Whenever possible, you should spell out designations rather than just put the initials…and never put MBA after your name.<?: prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />


 


--WM

Oct 30, 2008 7:39 pm

YTB - If you attempt to get the CFP I would advise you not to do it through the College for Financial Planning. I read the material and had to re-read it and then try and figure out what they were trying to teach me before I could learn the concepts. 

 
It read's like some egg head instructor talking for 40 minutes and not really saying anything. Try Kaplin or take a scheduled course through your employer. I passed the exam the first time and must admit that after a few months I forgot half the material.
 
The important thing is to prospect and learn the ropes. Remember what they say: the more titles the lower the gross.  Would you rather go into battle with an experienced soldier or one fresh out of the academy?
Oct 30, 2008 9:47 pm



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