As a kid I remember turning the dial on our TV that received three stations. I was fascinated by weather and always tried to catch the forecasts on each channel. The graphics, satellite images, and radars were primitive by today’s standards. Frankly, I don’t remember much about any of the broadcasts, but I do remember that one channel had a meteorologist that had the “NWA Seal of Approval,” and another channel had one with the “AMS Seal of Approval.” Before each broadcast, an authoritative voice would say, “Stan had earned the AMS Seal of Approval” or “Bob had achieved the NWA Seal of Approval.” The poor third station’s weatherperson must not have been very good, because no authoritative voice told me about any seals of approval. It turns out that the certification processes to get seals of approval are quite extensive. 

A few weeks back, I was watching the movie A Few Good Men. Kevin Bacon’s character reminds the jury that Dr. Stone is board certified in internal medicine, and that is why they should value his opinion. Yesterday, while driving home, I heard a radio commercial mention that every doctor in the practice was board certified. Because of this certification, they implied their clinic’s superiority over all others in the local area. Board certification for doctors is a near imperative. Certification tells patients, hospital systems, insurance companies, and colleagues that a doctor remains current in their practice. To get certified, a doctor must both complete a residency and pass a rigorous exam after the completion of medical school. To maintain certification, a doctor must remain current with updates in medical discoveries and technologies and periodically show proficiency in and improvements to their practice. While medical licensure is required to practice medicine, certification is a voluntary undertaking. The medical community holds the certification practice in such high regard that an estimated 90% of doctors in the United States have obtained board certification. 

Some of you reading this article have earned your Certified Financial Planner certification. The day is coming when clients will expect financial wellness certification from their financial professionals as well. Beyond investments, taxes, mortgages, estate planning, or simply helping with budgeting and credit counseling, clients want industry experts who are solid communicators, behavioral scientists, financial mentors, motivational coaches, and overall wellness gurus. It’s one thing to say you possess these traits. It’s another to have the certification to back it up. Some of the greatest wellness practitioners have collaborated to develop the Foundation for Financial Wellness’s Financial Wellness Professional Certification Program. 

Seeking Foundation certification in financial wellness will unlock seven modules with a multitude of courses and chapters inside each. The modules cover topics like behavior change, counseling and coaching, facilitation, and education. Participants will also get access to the Foundation’s world-famous 5 Essentials for Financial Wellness curriculum. Upon completion of the program, an exam allows the practitioner the opportunity to show competency in all aspects of financial wellness. Pass the exam and receive a certification mark that will show both current and future clients that your practice goes beyond analyzing the market and making recommendations. You care about the overall wellbeing of everyone with whom you encounter. The certification program caters to the busy professional. Approximately 20 hours of coursework can be completed at a go-at-your-own pace prior to taking the certifying exam. 

Once certified, you will join a community of like-minded wellness professionals and have access to world-class livestreams, videos, and curriculum curated by the Foundation for Financial Wellness. Annual continuing education requirements for certification renewal provides further opportunities to show your commitment to the wellness of your clients. 

Whether forecasting the weather, performing open-heart surgery, or motivating a client to make important financial improvements, certification matters. 

For more information and to enroll in the certification program, visit are a not-for-profit entity, looking to make a difference. Learn how to Handle Life (and money) Better.