Working My Way, One Step At a Time

financial-planningAt the end of the year, I will be moving back to NYC. It’s exciting but also makes me nervous because I haven’t been home for an extended period of years. Anyhow, I want to continue learning to become a financial planner what better way to learn than in NY. For the past couple of weeks, I have been sending out emails to different financial planners throughout the five boroughs in search of someone who would mentor me, or give me an internship opportunity to continue learning. Unfortunately, it has been harder than I imagined even to get a response. BUT the few responses that I have received have all shared similar things in each. For example one said

“It is great to hear that you are thinking about getting your CFP. As of now, we are not taking on any interns, but if that is to change, I will be sure to get in touch with you!”


“Thanks for reaching out. I agree, the CFP curriculum is fascinating, but I can imagine studying biochemistry kept you busy!…You can learn a lot of great information from trustworthy blogs and books. Sounds like you’re on the right track!”

and then there are some that have offered great suggestions such as

” I would start with getting a good understanding of your expenses and cash flow….Then, you can move on to investments (the pros and cons of Roth vs traditional, how to choose a good mix of investments from your employer plan menu and what the right asset allocation looks like for you) and taxes (what deductions are you entitled to, what will your projected earnings mean tax-wise in the coming years and is there any planning you should do), followed by insurance (how much term life insurance do you need – this is a number that will change as your life unfolds – and what sort of disability coverage).”

“I think understanding cash flow, knowing how to build and keep track of a budget (just basic awareness) is a crucial building block as well as understanding the purpose and need for various types of savings and investment accounts (HSA, FSA, IRA, Roth, 401k…). Debt management and credit repair are under-taught in the CFP course.”

But out of the many emails, I have sent, none of them have had space to allow me to intern or suggested tips on how to land an opportunity. Quite frankly it’s a bit disappointing because on one side everyone is excited and happy I’m trying to learn this industry, but on the other, the opportunity to learn seems so scarce. That just doesn’t click in my head. Or maybe it is the fact that I have been approaching people in the wrong way. I did learn however that learning cash-flow statements, insurance, investments, and taxes are essential to working in this field, so I haven’t made up a plan yet on how to learn those topics but I have begun looking into different books and online video lectures. My goal is to learn as much as I can before taking my CFP classes and exam to speed up my learning process and because I’m just so excited to learn.

I also joined the Radical Personal Finance facebook group, and I introduced myself and asked how to go about asking to work for a firm for free, and the response was

“Go in person to the local financial planning firms and ask them for referrals. Tell the secretary why you’re there and ask to speak to the principal. Don’t ask to intern with them; ask them for who you should work with. They will either refer you to someone good, or they will offer you a job.”

I commented saying that I thought email would be the best way to communicate and Joshua responded saying

“Not really. Too crowded. I have 1100 unread emails in my box right now. Phone or walk-in. Email doesn’t convey personality. Your personality is very important.”

That is great advice because I spent time sending out emails personalized for each individual person and to know that they might not even get read is good to know. So tomorrow after work I will go to a financial planning firm here where I live, and I will ask for some suggestions. Since I know I’m not looking for an opportunity here, I don’t feel the nerves I would if this were a potential place I would work. I hope it goes well and I hope the people are friendly enough to answer some of my questions. If any of you have any suggestions or advice on this topic, I would love to hear your feedback as well!

I decided I won’t be reading any books until the New Year comes around so I have no books to share or talk about but, I do want to share some of the business ideas I am trying to do. I have three ideas which I am currently working on, and I have no idea how successful they might be but here goes.

  1. In New York we have Laguardia Airport which is packed all the time, parking fees are excessively high, and there is limited parking space. Well, what if I offered vault parking where I would take the car park it where I live (which is 15 mins away) and then drive it back to you just as you are coming back from your long flight. I would only charge a flat fee of $10/day. It might sound a little sketchy, so I would provide my home address, a picture of my license with a passport when we meet to confirm my identity.
  2. Everybody loves NY, well lots of people do. You usually go to Times Square, the Empire state building. The common tourist sites that everyone goes but what if you want to see more? How do you do it? Usually, you hire these expensive tour guides that charge you ridiculous prices. Well, I was born and raised in NY, and I can show you places you would never have thought of. My services would be 20/hr per person, and any activity you would like me to join on would have to be at your expense if not I can find a coffee shop and wait until you are ready to move on to the next place. So for example, if you were to go into a museum for 2 hours, that would not be charged because I am not personally showing you around. If you want more information, go to this website:
  3. I thought of the idea of selling stuff on eBay or craigslist. Originally I was planning to sell ebooks, but that walking a fine line and I am not trying to get sued by agencies or companies for selling their products. Therefore this might be a no for me. Who knows I’ll think on it some more.

These are some of my ideas, and they may change may not, I might drop them who knows. It’s the start of my journey, and I need to figure out better ways to market them. If any of you have any suggestions, I would love to hear them. Otherwise, I’ll be here, fighting, trying, experimenting different ways to go AAO.




Author: aao8894

I am 22 years old exploring the world and everything it has to offer. No matter what I do in life I will always be a student and I love it. I love learning and I hope to someday inspire people to go and fight for their dreams like I am currently doing.

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