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Strategic Partnership Spotlight: Financial Planning Association of Michigan

December 5, 2011

The Financial Planning Association of Michigan is blazing a new trail for partnerships among chapters in their national organization. Their partnership with SBAM was shared at the Financial Planning Association’s (FPA) national conference and is being modeled by other FPA state chapters.

“We are very pleased with the FPA of Michigan’s recent partnerships,” shared Sandy Adams, president of the FPA of Michigan. “The alliances we are establishing with organizations like SBAM are bringing value to our members and the Association as a whole – which is now a strategy other statewide chapters of the national FPA are modeling. These partnerships help make the FPA stronger as a whole.”  

The FPA of Michigan is one of the largest and most active financial groups in the country, serving over 560 members across the state of Michigan. The FPA nationally has approximately 24,000 members and close to 100 active local chapters. Recognized as a leader in the financial planning community, the FPA focuses on fueling members with practice management ideas, sharing of financial planning strategies, educational experiences, networking opportunities, and avenues to keep up to date with cutting edge new developments and technology – all with the goal of best serving client needs.

“We have been pleasantly surprised at the benefit we’ve received from SBAM,” said Adams. “We had expectations going in, but the relationship itself especially on the legislative end, has exceeded our expectations.”

SBAM had the opportunity to talk with Adams about the FPA of Michigan and their partnership with SBAM.

Focus: What is the benefit of your partnership with SBAM?

Adams: One of the goals of our organization is to be a voice for financial planners on legislative issues, and to protect our professionals and the public on issues related to financial planning. So with that in mind, SBAM’s knowledge of local and statewide government has been invaluable. The team at SBAM has helped get us connected with legislators and have a voice for planners in our organizations, as well as the public, on issues that affect them financially. SBAM has also educated our organization on how the whole legislative system works , and specifically keeping us informed about what is happening on that level and ways we as an organization can be more active in the legislative process.

We also value SBAM’s communications. Their Power Boosts, the magazine, the website – all keep us more in the loop on what’s happening in Michigan outside of just our industry.

Focus: What is the importance of partnerships as a whole?

Adams: For the FPA of Michigan, we are a volunteer organization, so by leveraging our time and effort through partnerships with other organizations and associations, we are able to have the greatest impact for the association and our members as a whole. The partnerships provide a venue to learn and bring more value to our members.

Focus: What are some trends you are seeing in the financial planning industry?

Adams: People are realizing the value of working with financial planners to manage their investments and assets because of the volatility of the investment markets and the high level of “unknowns.”  We are seeing more people act on need – maybe they have kids going to college or they are getting closer to retirement. We are working to get the word out about the benefits of working with a financial planner, starting early to see long-term value and planning ahead.

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