The financial planning industry remains stubbornly lopsided when it comes to gender diversity (men by far outnumber women) despite heroic efforts by many stakeholders in recent years to balance the scales.
Here is one more initiative: The Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards' Center for Financial Planning is starting a mentorship program, called WIN-to-WIN, to connect women seeking a CFP with advisors of either gender who have gone through the process.
Currently, only 23 percent of CFP certificants are women.
According to CFP Board research conducted as part of its Women’s Initiative, a lack of mentors was cited by women as a top barrier to staying in the profession. Other research shows individuals are more likely to complete the CFP Board's certification process if they know someone who has already done it.
“Often, people may get discouraged during the process and need a pep talk,” said Eleanor Blayney, CFP Board consumer advocate.
Blayney believes the mentorship program may also help prospects find, and complete, the designation's professional experience requirement.
Women who are interested in can sign up at CFP.net/WINMentor.