Why I’m resigning from my role with CISI

In 2012 it was my privilege to become the first paraplanner to be elected to the board of the Institute of Financial Planning (IFP).

Four years ago I said that I wanted to play my part in elevating the professional reputation of paraplanning and its role in professional financial advice in the UK.

Four years on, paraplanners now have real influence over the work of the professional body thanks to the establishment of the paraplanner committee.

Paraplanner participation in the design and direction of the annual paraplanner conference has resulted in a richer range and depth of content that’s more relevant and rewarding for paraplanners who take part.

And the debate about common professional standards for paraplanning has risen higher and higher up the agenda of the IFP — and now CISI — and professional bodies beyond.

Speaking of CISI: A lot has changed for the IFP over the past four years.

Originally, I planned to serve just one term on the board of the IFP.

But once merger of the IFP with CISI was on the cards, I decided to see it through and secure the best outcome for paraplanning from the transition.

Not only is the process of transition all but complete, it’s also proved to be a catalyst for a new generation of paraplanners to emerge.

Having joined the group last year, for instance, Farida Hassanali now chairs the paraplanner committee. What’s more, Farida’s become a great addition to the IFP forum too.

It’s this emerging generation of paraplanners, and the closure that the IFP’s transition to CISI brings, that has given me the chance to think about the future of paraplanning within CISI and the part that I should play in it.

And it’s led me to decide that it’s time to step back, to make way for a new generation of paraplanners, and to devote more time to my own business.

I will remain a member of CISI’s paraplanner committee, and remain committed to working with CISI — via the Powwows — to help establish common professional standards for paraplanning.

It has been my privilege to serve paraplanners.

But now it’s your turn.

Nominations are now open for new IFP Forum members and, if you’re a paraplanner who’s interested in playing your part in shaping the future of our profession, you should really consider standing for election.

Because the future’s bright for paraplanners within CISI.

And it would be great to have another paraplanner elected to represent paraplanners everywhere.

I’d be very happy to have a chat with you if you’re interested in taking on the task. Just get in touch to let me know. You can also find out more here.