Contributed by: Josh Bitel
In late June, I had the luxury of attending the FPA NexGen Gathering, held in Naperville, Illinois. This is a “conference” geared towards the ‘next generation’ of advisors in the financial planning profession, specifically young professionals under the age of 36. While most conferences are centered on a specific agenda, in which a presenter stands in front of a large group and speaks to participants about various topics of interest related to the profession, this conference is much more interactive with an open agenda format. With an open agenda, the participants drive the content and become the presenters and participants of the sessions. On the first day of the conference, any attendees that have burning topics they’d like to learn more about, or discuss with the group, they bring that idea to the table. If the topic resonates well with the group, that topic becomes a “breakout session” when those who are interested can discuss the topic and lead the conversation in any direction they desire. I learned valuable information from other participants on topics ranging from financial planning, to business development, career development, technology and more.
The FPA NexGen Gathering was not all about meetings. Here are some additional highlights from my weekend:
- Networking with young financial planning professionals from all over the nations, serving in various roles in many different types of firms.
- Having individual and small group conversations with others outside of the formal sessions related to the financial planning profession and how different firms run their businesses and serve their clients.
- Participating in fun activities with others, meeting new people and making new friends.
One of our core values at The Center is to develop talent that anchors in intellectual curiosity. Continued learning is an important way to showcase this value. Attending the NexGen Gathering was a great way for me to expand my knowledge base and to crowd source new possibilities for our clients here at The Center. At the end of the day, attending these conferences are important ways for our staff to grow in our jobs in order to find new ways to best serve our clients. I’m grateful I was able to attend this year’s conference and I look forward to future opportunities to expand my knowledge!
Josh Bitel is a Client Service Associate at Center for Financial Planning, Inc.®
Any opinions are those of Joshua Bitel and not necessarily those of Raymond James. Raymond James is not affiliated with the FPA NexGen.