Financial planning is the process of setting monetary goals - both short- and long-term - and developing a strategy to reach them. This set of skills is important because it helps you meet your financial obligations in the present while you envision how to achieve the future life that you desire.
Managing your personal finances starts with making sure that you can budget your income to cover your expenses. With your expenses covered, extra income can be put into savings and low-risk investments to provide a stable foundation for the future. Then, whether procuring a business loan, life insurance, or setting up a retirement strategy, financial planning can be a constant companion through your life.
The younger you are, the more important this process can be. Creating good investment habits early in your career can allow your hard-earned savings to compound over time and set you up for the success you want later in life.
Whether you manage a rural organic farm or develop state-of-the art urban housing, financial planning skills can help you manage your earnings with intention. This, in turn, empowers you to take control of your career path in the pursuit of your greater life goals.
If you have both an acumen for financial planning and the desire to help others, you may want to pursue a career as a personal financial advisor. By providing guidance on everything from college tuition savings to retirement and estate plans, they can help clients manage their finances responsibly through every phase of life.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, personal financial advisors make a median salary of $87,850 per year and their job growth is expected to climb steadily as Baby Boomers enter retirement. Though they can start with only a bachelor’s degree, their chances of success improve when they get Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification, and a master’s degree can help prepare them for management positions.
Yes, Coursera offers a wide range of online courses and Specializations in financial planning and related topics like financial management. So, whether you are looking for a career in financial planning or just looking to plan your own financial future, investing your valuable time and money in these courses is a low-risk, high-reward proposition. You’ll be learning from leading experts from top-ranked schools like the University of Florida, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the University of California, Irvine - all while paying a substantially lower tuition cost than on-campus students.
The skills and experience that you might need to already have before starting to learn financial planning may include an understanding of finance, knowledge of how people save and invest their incomes, and an enthusiasm for helping others make the most of their money. To move into the field of financial planning, you would be best served with a background in financial education, gained on the job or through a college degree, along with having a financial certification. Having these skills and experience would help you in this field, as financial planners use their insights to help their clients reach their financial goals. This might include financial work in investment planning, insurance planning, or retirement planning.
The kind of people best suited for work that involves financial planning are those people with an agreeable personality, a strong knowledge of investment options, an understanding of financial numbers, and a long-term focus on financial goals for their clients. Since a financial planner develops personalized financial plans for their clients, they might specialize in certain areas, like investments, real estate, retirement, education, or other areas. People who have gained a strong financial education with a bachelor's degree in accounting, business, finance, or economics are usually well suited for financial planning work.
You might know if learning financial planning is right for you if you've gotten excited about courses in investments, risk management, taxes, estate planning, and stock investing in online schools, colleges, and universities. These courses are fundamental for learning about financial planning. As more individuals seek investing guidance, the field of financial planning can be a lucrative path to take to help people wisely invest their money into strong investments. Essentially, if you find interest in knowing how real estate investment trusts work, or how to find ways to double a client’s money, then you might be a good fit for working in financial planning.
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