"An ISO standard for financial planning is not the Americanization of planning around the globe. But done well, a new international standard can synthesize the best of the last 30 years--and bring planning to millions of people"

July 2003
Journal of Financial Planning;Jul2003, Vol. 16 Issue 7, p12
Academic Journal
The article presents an interview with Peter Lefferts, who retired from Citigroup and American Express, about what will be a four-year effort to develop an ISO financial planning standard. About three years ago, some members of the ISO community, the CFP Board leadership, and some segments of the international financial planning community began talking and developing some energy about exploring an ISO standard. One of the big differences between previous ISO standards, for products, and for this effort, is that with many existing standards the initiative was bottom-up, or customer-driven. The intended outcome of the ISO initiative, first, was to create a standard or integrated set of standards that would define financial planning. Second would be defining the competencies of the financial planning practitioner, and third would be the standards for the ethics that must surround the process. Some people are concerned that a standard for a personal professional service that is not linked to an examination and certification process is at best sterile, and at worst dangerous. The argument for an ISO standard is that, as a brand, it could have far more reach and recognition worldwide than the CFP mark. There certainly are risks in this work--the threat of confusion about ISO versus the CFP mark, the threat of weakening the CFP mark.


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