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How to Choose a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ Professional for Your Philanthropic Endeavors

| July 02, 2018
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One of the most exciting financial trends over the past few decades has been an increased focus on using corporate and newly created wealth to support worthwhile philanthropic endeavors.

Whether these efforts are carried out through an existing foundation or a specially created entity, the good intentions of philanthropy also come with significant moral and legal obligations. There is an expectation to uphold the fiduciary standard of care in the management and disbursement of funds held by any charitable organization.

This concept of accountability does not just mean avoiding any negligence or malfeasance. It also requires an active effort to protect and manage the assets of an organization, maximizing the potential returns while following prudent policies and procedures.

THE ROLE OF THE PROFESSIONALS

To ensure fully transparent and successful stewardship of all funds entrusted to them, successful philanthropic organizations find the use of a qualified CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (“CFP®”) Professional an essential element of fulfilling their mission.

An Advisor who has earned the CFP® designation will invest considerable time, knowledge and experience in helping ascertain the needs and goals of your organization. They develop, administer and regularly update a comprehensive Financial Plan to assist in meeting those goals in the most prudent and responsible manner.

FINDING THE RIGHT ADVISOR

The selection of the right CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ Professional for your organization is very important.  To start the process, filter down candidates that already have the CFP® designation. This eliminates many firms that do not have Advisors who have invested the time and effort into accumulating the training and the knowledge to earn this important title.

Beyond this initial qualifier, there are industry standards you can apply to help narrow down your potential best Advisor. These include:

  1. Financial strength and experience. Does the firm have a long-term record of success and stability?
  2. Product depth and quality. Does the firm offer leading-edge products that reflect the latest in regulatory and compliance while using advanced but proven technology?
  3. Compatibility of delivery systems. Do the firm’s systems properly integrate with your current capabilities for collecting data and managing/reporting results?
  4. Demographic match. Do the Advisors at the firm “get it” when it comes to the unique needs and expectation of your organization, its board, and its target beneficiaries?

You will find that properly asking these questions will significantly narrow your field of qualified candidates to work with your organization. At that point, your primary task is assessing the fee structure of the candidates. Consider only those Advisors who provide you with clear benchmarking processes that address fees, investments, and services in a holistic manner.

The team at RMR takes pride in providing such vital services to a growing number of individuals and families, charities, foundations, pension plans, and businesses. With more than 30 years of experience, RMR professionals know what is needed in an effective Financial Plan and how to deliver it. Additionally, you will find Advisors who have earned the CFP® designation.

We also address all aspects of Risk Management with an approach that fits seamlessly with your Financial Plan. We understand what you need to support your philanthropic endeavors, and our team will work diligently to ensure your organization meets its goals in a financially compliant manner.

If you are seeking to find or replace your current Financial Planner, consider these takeaways:

  • Your fiduciary responsibilities require you to get the best possible advice
  • A CFP® certificant is the starting point for choosing a qualified candidate
  • Ask the four basic questions about stability, experience, products, and match as further filters in your selection process
  • Ensure any fee structure is commensurate with the services being provided.

The Advisors at RMR welcome you to ask us those questions and test our qualifications. Put our decades of experience to work and gain the peace of mind our clients enjoy. Call or email us today.

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