Starting a new career can be both daunting and exciting at the same time. You may be unsure of what to expect, but you’re also looking forward to the possibilities that lie ahead. This is especially true if you’re considering a career in financial planning. If you’re thinking about becoming a financial planner, you’re probably wondering what the process entails. Here’s a quick overview of what you can expect:
1. Get your education
In order to become a financial planner, you’ll need to have at least a bachelor’s degree in finance, accounting, or a related field. If you want to further your education and improve your chances of landing a job, you may want to consider pursuing a master’s degree in financial planning. For example, if you want to pursue a fasea approved degree, you’ll need to get your master’s in financial planning from an accredited institution. Similarly, if you want to be a CFP® professional, you’ll need to complete a course of study approved by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards.
2. Get some experience
While your education is important, employers will also be looking for financial planners who have some real-world experience under their belts. One way to gain experience is to intern with a financial planning firm.
This will give you the opportunity to learn about the industry and get a feel for what the job entails. You can also volunteer with organizations like AARP or the Financial Planning Association, which offer financial planning services to members of the community.
Additionally, many financial planning firms offer entry-level positions that can give you the experience you need to get started in your career. You could start as a research analyst or a customer service representative and work your way up the ladder.
3. Get certified
While it’s not required, becoming certified as a financial planner can give you an edge when you’re job hunting. The most popular certification is the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation, which is offered by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards. To earn your CFP, you’ll need to complete an approved course of study and pass an examination.
Other certifications that are available include the Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) designation offered by the American College and the Certified Public Accountant-Personal Financial Specialist (CPA-PFS) credential offered by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
Keep in mind that each of these certifications has different requirements, so be sure to do your research before you decide which one is right for you.
4. Start networking
One of the best ways to find a job in any field is to network with people who are already working in that field. Attend industry events, such as conferences and seminars, and get to know other financial planners. You can also join professional organizations, such as the Financial Planning Association or the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors. These organizations offer networking opportunities, as well as educational resources that can help you in your career.
Also, don’t forget to utilize your personal network. Let your friends and family know that you’re looking for a job in financial planning. They may know someone who is hiring or be able to put you in touch with someone who can help you get your foot in the door.
For example, if you’re interested in working as a financial planner for a particular company, try reaching out to someone who works there and see if they’re willing to chat with you about the job.
5. Start your own firm
If you don’t want to work for someone else, you can always start your own financial planning firm. This can be a great option if you have the entrepreneurial spirit and you’re looking for more control over your career. Of course, starting your own business is a big undertaking, so be sure to do your research and put together a solid business plan before you take the plunge.
For starters, you’ll need to decide what type of financial planning services you want to offer and who your target market is. You’ll also need to get the proper licenses and registrations, as well as set up your office and marketing materials. And, of course, you’ll need to drum up some business. But if you’re willing to put in the work, starting your own financial planning firm can be a great way to take control of your career and build something that’s all your own.
Also, if you’re interested in working with a specific type of clientele, such as small business owners or retirees, you may want to consider starting a niche financial planning firm. This can help you stand out in the industry and attract clients who are looking for the type of services you specialize in.
6. Consider other options
If you’re not interested in working as a financial planner, there are other options available in the financial industry. For example, you could become a certified public accountant or work as a financial analyst. You could also work in sales or management for a financial institution, such as a bank or insurance company. Or you could become a loan officer or a financial adviser.
Really think about what you want to do and what’s a good fit for your skills and interests. There are many different paths you can take in the financial industry, so it’s important to find one that’s right for you.
There are many different paths you can take in the financial industry, so it’s important to find one that’s right for you. If you’re not interested in working as a financial planner, there are other options available in the financial industry, such as becoming a certified public accountant or working as a financial analyst.
Really think about what you want to do and what’s a good fit for your skills and interests. In conclusion, becoming a financial planner takes time, dedication, and hard work, but it can be a rewarding career.
With the right education and experience, you can build a successful career in this field. So if you’re ready to take the next step, start by doing your research and then get started on your path to becoming a financial planner.