Financial Planning Philosophy: "Passive Investing, but active budgeting." I believe strongly in people having some sort of budget to follow no matter their income. While a focus on low cost investments is important, I think a focus on all areas of financial planning over merely investments is vital. Investing is just one part of financial planning, not planning itself.
What business or professional challenges were you facing before deciding to attend the FPA Annual Conference in Seattle last year?
The firm I was fully employed at prior to attending the conference last year was wanting to move to the cloud so as to be able to do away with our server. Meeting with other planners who were going through this, along with all of the new young planners starting their own firms, was very helpful. Additionally, there were so many resources available in the exhibit hall that proved to be helpful. Just by attending we ended up getting our CRM, storage and a financial planning/account aggregator software set-up on the cloud!
Besides getting new technology set-up, what were some of the big takeaways for you personally?
As a young planner, and a first-time attendee last year, the best part, in my opinion, was the networking that took place outside of the sessions. Attendees were so generous with their time and were willing to swap best practices while just standing in the halls! It was neat to see people set up dinner plans with someone they just met or with longtime friends they only get to see annually at each FPA Annual Conference. And the engagement between students and practitioners was terrific. That, to me, is where the real value lies in attending the conference.
If you can hone in on the one most impactful takeaway for you last year, what would it be?
The ability to network and engage with so many professionals, and academics, that have been in the profession for many years. The opportunity to learn from experienced planners was, and is, second to none. Additionally, I found it refreshing that FPA and the practitioners who attend the conference are embracing academics and their role in helping shape the profession.
As Secretary of FPA NexGen, why should your fellow young professionals get to the conference this year?
The reasons are plentiful! There is a NexGen social the first night for the 36-and-under crowd to come together to have a drink, snack, and get to know each other a bit better. The community and passion of this group is fascinating and exciting. There is opportunity for recent graduates and current students to engage with the NexGen leadership with questions on how to be more actively engaged in the organization. Additionally, there will be focused content for NexGen members with topics including career development, client engagement skills, business development, and more!
Why should your FPA colleagues make it a point to attend the FPA Annual Conference?
There are relatively few conferences that boast 2,000+ attendees, affording you the opportunity to network with many other fellow professionals from across the United States and around the world, all while providing you with knowledge on new industry trends, practice management resources, and CE. The merits of attending the conference really stand on their own and everyone should make it a point of getting to Baltimore this September!
Do you want to experience the FPA Annual Conference the same way Derek did? If so, learn about the FPA Annual Conference and don't miss your opportunity to connect with your peers like never before!
The FPA Annual Conference - Baltimore 2016 Schedule is now available!