Financial planner career presentation Just what is a financial planner? That question might be on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" because there's no definitive answer. The field varies in dynamic ways. People with financial planning careers can be found in big Wall Street investment companies all the way to little tiny local banks. Others work in consumer lending institutions, insurance agencies and specialty financial planning firms. What exactly does the world of professional financial planning entail? The answer is simply, plenty! For example: A successful businesswoman might need help in building a retirement portfolio. A young married couple may seek advise on budgeting their expenses so they can purchase their first home. A young man who has just received a substantial inheritance may require assistance managing cash assets. An elderly widow may need help evaluating an insurance policy. And who won't want to know new strategies for reducing their income taxes. Financial planning is a quickly growing career opportunity. Dalbar, a mutual fund industry research group, reported in a recent study, nearly two-thirds of American households with income greater than $50,000, use a paid financial advisor. That translates to more than 20,000,000 affluent households paying for some kind of financial guidance. Financial planners have varying levels of education and certification. Simple plans might only require an insurance policy. But if someone needed a detailed financial program, which includes estate planning, and taxation issues, they would need someone who has specialized training signified by the letters behind their name. There are Certified Financial Planners (CFP), Chartered Financial Consultants (ChFC), Certified Public Accountants with a Personal Financial Specialist (PFS) designation and finally, Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA) who specializing in high net worth clients. Everyone has a little different situation and this requires a broad base of knowledge to serve all. It might be better to specialize and pick your market within a specific area. You could work only with mortgages or life insurance policies. Using experts like trust officers and CPAs could expand your market without additional training. One might ask, is a career in financial planning right for me? Ask yourself these key questions and see if you are suited to a career in financial planning: Are you a good listener? Do you enjoy meeting and interacting with all kinds of people? Would you consider yourself detail orientated, and well organized? Are you comfortable using a calculator to perform math functions? Are you self-motivated and ambitious? Do you invest or enjoy following the financially news? If you answered "yes" to at least three of these questions, getting into financial planning could be a smart career move. Entry points in this field can vary widely. A high school graduate can go to work for an insurance agency and learn about financial planning. Some of the most professional advisors, started out as college interns, working for a financial institution. Accounting and Finance graduates are obvious college degrees that lend easily to this career opportunity, but any degree with the right drive and determination can become successful. It is easy to see that a career in financial planning can be as complex or simple as you wish. Knowledge is the variable you can control. The more you learn about financial planning the more valuable you will be in the market.
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