Creating a financial planner workforce that reflects the changing demographics of wealth in the United States is important for ensuring the long-term success of the profession and the ability of Americans to access the advice they need. In recent years, significant progress has been made in attracting more women, people of color, and young individuals into the field.
The number of Certified Financial Planners (CFP®) professionals under age 30 has increased by 83 percent since 2016; 6,032 new women have joined the ranks of CFP® professionals, bringing the total to 20,632; and the number of Black and Latino CFP® professionals, including those who self-identified as biracial Black and Latino, grew to 3,688 in 2020. Recruiting, however, is just one piece of the puzzle.
Creating a more diverse and sustainable workforce also requires cultivating an environment in which financial planners want to build a career.
”As awareness of the financial planning profession continues to spread and we attract more ethnically and racially diverse talent, the challenge continues to be retaining and supporting these thriving professionals,” explains Rianka Dorsainvil, CFP®, Co-CEO of 2050 Wealth Partners. In part, such support means helping financial planners feel comfortable in the field and recognize the unique skills and perspectives they bring.
Early in her career, Dorsainvil says she felt that “in order to fit in I needed to code-switch. I could not be my authentic self.” Not only was it exhausting to constantly change mannerisms or appearance to feel like she belonged with a specific audience, Dorsainvil says doing so also ignored the fact that no matter where you come from, what you look like, how you grew up or your circumstances, but you can also be successful in this profession for who you are and what you bring to the table.
Dorsainvil adds that overcoming that mindset and the barriers that keep women and people of color from entering or staying in the profession requires allies in the financial advisory space to act in solidarity with marginalized groups and unlearn what they think they know about race and ethnicity.
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