Financial Planning Articles

Financial Planning Articles (January 11, 2019)

“Financial Planning Articles” is a collection of articles and research that I’ve been reading regarding financial planning, industry trends, career development, and more.


This installment features a heavy dose of personal and career development articles from both Michael Kitces at and Shane Parrish at Farnam Street. Kitces explains why what may feel like “paying your dues” as a new advisor is really just a necessary aspect of learning the skills of the profession. His second article reviews strategies for satisfying the CFP Board experience requirements as a career changer. Parrish’s articles cover productivity (and doing less in order to do more) and learning how to learn and better retain information. This week wraps up with an investing piece from Ray Dalio discussing what factors he believes have led China to prosper over the last forty years and recommendations for “dealing” with China going forward.

I hope you enjoy.

What I’m Reading:

Personal/Career Development

Why “Paying Your Dues” Is Necessary For New Financial Advisors (Michael Kitces,

“When you’re a professional and you’re training for an advanced skill set, ‘paying your dues’ is not just a thing you do to put in your time – paying your dues is how you learn and develop the skills that make you a real financial planner.”

Satisfying The CFP Board Experience Requirement As A Part-Time Career Changer (Michael Kitces,

“The bottom line, though, is simply to recognize that there are pathways for career-changers to gain experience, but those who have the most financial flexibility to take potentially-lower-paying-jobs to accelerate their experience progress will have the most options. Which is appealing for those who are able to do so. And hopefully the CFP Board will consider expanding these pathways further over time, so the available career path options aren’t so limited for those who aren’t able to take a step back financially just to make the transition!”

Much of What You’re Going to Do or Say Today is Not Essential (Shane Parrish, Farnam Street)

“The plan to work better flies out the window; any hope of sanity along with it. If we can’t work smarter, we can work harder. So we end up redoubling our efforts, cutting out lunch and shortening meetings so we can fit more of them in….The paradox is that in an effort to do more, we end up doing less.”

How to Improve Learning and Maximize Retention (Shane Parrish, Farnam Street)

“Even outside of formal education, we have to learn large amounts of new information on a regular basis: foreign languages, technical terms, sale scripts, speeches, the names of coworkers. Learning through rote memorization is tedious and—more important—ineffective. If we want to remember something, we need to work with our brains, not against them. To do that, we need to understand cognitive constraints and find intelligent ways to get around them or use them to our advantage. This is where the spacing effect comes in. It’s a wildly useful phenomenon: we are better able to recall information and concepts if we learn them in multiple, spread-out sessions. We can leverage this effect by using spaced repetition to slowly learn almost anything.”


Looking Back on the Last 40 Years of Reforms in China (Ray Dalio,

“From my experiences and from what I am told by Chinese who should know, I believe Chinese leadership seeks to run the country the way they believe a good family should be run, from the top down, maintaining high standards of behavior, putting the collective interest ahead of any individual interest, with each member knowing their place and having filial respect for those in the hierarchy so the system works in an orderly way. One of China’s leaders who explained this concept to me told that the word “country” consists of two characters, state and family, which influences how they view their role in looking after their state/family….As a broad generalization, when the interest of the country (like the family) is at odds with the interest of the individual, the interest of the country (like the interest of the family) should be favored over the interest of the individual. Individuals are parts of a greater machine. As a result of this perspective, the system seeks to develop, promote and reward good character and good citizenship.”

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