Real Money, Real Experts

Key Takeaways from CFPB's Financial Coaching Initiative with Pam Fraser, AFC® and Sarah Bainton Kahn

May 24, 2022 AFCPE® Season 2 Episode 10
Real Money, Real Experts
Key Takeaways from CFPB's Financial Coaching Initiative with Pam Fraser, AFC® and Sarah Bainton Kahn
Show Notes Transcript

Celebrating 30 years of the AFC® means celebrating the incredible impact it has made over the years! This week we had the pleasure to speak with Sarah Bainton Kahn and Pam Fraser, two women who played instrumental roles in the success of the CFPB’s Financial Coaching Initiative, which ran from 2015 to 2019. The initiative provided financial coaching services to veterans as well as individuals and families in economically vulnerable communities and uniquely set a high standard by requiring that all coaches held both the Accredited Financial Counselor® (AFC®) and the Financial Fitness Coach (FFC®) designations.

In our conversation, Sarah and Pam fondly reminisce about the program – sharing the missteps, the successes, and the impact. They talk about the importance of meeting clients where they are, building relationships, and finding your champions. This episode is full of great insight and we hope it will inspire more programs like this one in the years to come.  


Show Notes:
2:13 How this initiative with CFPB came to be
4:55 How this program served the community
7:41 Key aspects of the program that made it successful
16:59 Learning takeaways and improvements for the program
22:04 Advice for organizations looking to use this model
25:18 Pam and Sara's final two cents

Show Note Links:
Email Sarah or Connect on Linkedin
Email Pam or Connect on Linkedin
CFPB Report: Read Here
CFPB Homepage
FFC Certification
AFC certification
Guide to Remote Financial Coaching 

Submit an Invitation to Present by June 3rd!


Speaker 1:

Welcome to real money, real experts, a podcast where leading financial counseling and coaching experts share their stories, their challenges, and their advice for helping people manage money in the real world. I'm your host, Rachel Daon interim executive director of the association for financial counseling and planning education for a F C P

Speaker 2:

E . And I'm your co-host Dr . Mary Bell Carlson, an accredited financial counselor or a FFC , and the CEO of Carlson consulting. Every episode, we're taking a deep dive into the topics that personal finance professionals care about helping clients, building community in your professional growth.

Speaker 1:

As you may know, 2022 marks the 30th anniversary of the AFC, which makes it very fitting to welcome two amazing guests to today's show Sarah Batton Conn and Pam Fraser, formerly McClelland, both Pam and Sarah were integral partners on the consumer financial protection bureau where CFP B's financial coaching initiative, which ran from 2015 to 2019, the initiative which provided financial coaching services for veterans, as well as economically vulnerable communities recognized the need for the highest level of training in professionalism and required all coaches to earn both the accredited financial counselor and the financial fitness coach certifications before retiring Pam, who is also an AFC was the senior financial educator on the service member affairs team at the CF P B . In that role, she worked to identify opportunities and develop strategies to improve the financial education and consumer protection measures for the military and veteran communities. Sarah was a policy analyst with the CF P B between 2012 and 2019. Today she is the executive director of consumer strategy and social impact at JP Morgan. Chase welcome Pam and Sarah . Thanks for joining us.

Speaker 3:

Thank you very much. When you asked us to do this, I was thrilled and anytime I can do anything with Sarah Bain con , who I consider an absolute rockstar I'm in.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely. And I'd like to take us back to the beginning of this project. Can you start us off by telling us about the idea of how this initiative came to be and why you decided to partner with a F C P on it?

Speaker 4:

I was focused on economically vulnerable consumers at the C F P B . And we recognize in kind of our space, the, the real value and importance of having individualized support when it came to financial decisions and financial crises that would come up often for the community that we really care about and were focused on. And so financial coaching was an approach that really was getting a lot of buzz. The CFPB did a rigorous study of coaching and showed really strong results, evidence based results. So we were really kind of excited about, you know, building on that evidence base . But then what really excited me was the fact that it's so strength based . It's not, you know, judgemental , it's not, the approach is , um , open and , and where you're really partnering with client and counselor coach are really partnering together on a shared goal. This was like a breath of fresh air in terms of the approach. And it's something that was longer term too. So someone, you know, coming from crisis, going into really goal setting and, and really thinking about their future was, was super important. And so that's kind of where my piece came. And then Pam talk about your background, cuz I think together we were sort of like we were thrown together at first and then we were like, this is perfect. This is a beautiful partnership.

Speaker 3:

Mm-hmm <affirmative> it was, it was absolutely perfect. I'll tell you how it happened to me, Sarah and her office were briefing this to the then director, which cord Dre in a meeting. And he thought it was so exciting. It turned into my boss, Holly betrays and said, so Holly, don't you think we should do this with veterans? And she said, oh definitely. And I know just the person who's gonna take this on

Speaker 2:

<laugh> . So

Speaker 3:

This was not on my job jar, but I'll

Speaker 4:

Tell you ,

Speaker 3:

It was the most fantastic project I've ever been on because you know, when you're active duty, there are financial counselors, there's AFCs in every post base, wherever there's service members, but once you're a veteran that's done. So, you know, being a veteran and also being an AFC as a civilian in one of those family support centers, I knew there was such a gap of, and such a need that when I sat down with Sarah and said, okay, how are we gonna do this? We just took off. I mean, it was, it was really, really hard work, just prepping for this. I realized how much we went through Sarah, but you know, we still have it a lot of fun and I think did a lot of good.

Speaker 2:

And for our listeners, will you give us a really high level kind of describe what the program is and what it did for both veterans, as well as economically challenged,

Speaker 3:

We knew that we needed to figure out how we could integrate this service into places where services were already being given to the E VC consumer. And as on my side, of course, the veteran, because you know, they're not just hanging out on street quarters with signs saying we're veteran, do you have to, you have to be able to find them first off. And so we needed to find where we could put this wonderful resource that was already going to be where veterans in my case were going. We were going to put 'em in vets centers, the , which is part of the VA, which would've been fabulous. But by the time we kicked this thing off, because we had to go through an entire , uh , procurement process, that kind of relationship wasn't able to happen. So my boss Holly happened to be at a meeting with the department of labor and they said, you know, in our American job centers, that's what they called them. Then we have a gold card program that's for veterans. And, you know, we think this could work.

Speaker 4:

I'll just add to that. So like Pam said, meeting consumers that these consumer segments, where they are, was so important to us, we knew that how much, you know, consumers already struggled to like go around and , you know, for their benefits here and ports here and their busy lives. And, and we really wanted to make it easy for them and have it integrated into existing services. And so Pam mentioned that department of labor America job centers. And then in addition to that, we had them in a number of nonprofits around the country. And so ranged from, I mean, legal services to also nonprofit job services, Goodwills domestic violence, serving organizations. It was kind of the whole gamut, you know, social services. We had a whole range of types of organizations that we worked with and we had a chance to kind of see what worked, what didn't, you know, it was actually a really great little testing kitchen to see which organizations melded with coaching and which maybe didn't really work as well. So we learned quite a bit from that

Speaker 3:

And it was fabulous partnership because of course, you know, veterans can also be economically vulnerable. So we wound up, you know, having what we called hybrid sites, because at first we thought this was a vet site and this was an ABC site, but, but then this hybrid site started to evolve, which was a , a challenge for the coach that was in there, but you know, what, they stepped up to it. And it was just a wonderful thing to see. And , and there was also a , a , a small pilot for tele coaching that we did too, which I thought, you know, given more time that would've really taken off, especially going into what now we know it would be the COVID era.

Speaker 1:

We're gonna put a link to the report in the show notes for everybody, but I just wanted to call out some of the statistics when we talk about evidence based and what we've learned from the project. But I believe we had coaches at 60 locations across the country throughout the three years, you reached 23,000 consumers and 84% of active clients saw improvements in their financial situation. And 93% of clients either established, made progress on or completed their goals, which are really great statistics. I'm curious, what would you consider some key aspects of the program that really made it successful?

Speaker 3:

I think what made us the most successful was we, we had the right team and, and , and when I say team it's from our champion leadership team at CF P B that were behind us when things got a little rough sometimes, or just kicking it off to the team, the management team, certainly I could never, ever have done this without Sarah Bain con . And we also had a , a man named Steph page who was our contract team leader, who was just an amazing leader. That contract really did a good job finding the right people to be coaches. We did a lot of interviews at a F C P conferences. It was wonderful because we insisted that all of our coaches have an AFC. And then we got them into the coaching model, if you will, so that they could come to this with the subject matter and the rigor of an AFC also with the ethics component and the EU component and all of those things that just blended so well with Sage financials model for coaching. So I think that was something that really set us up for success.

Speaker 4:

Also, I'd say just the fact that it was a hybrid model in terms of, well, we met people where they were physically, but I feel like we also met people where they were financially and sort of mentally, if you will, or , um , from a behavioral aspect because our coaches were so well trained and supported that they could shift gears, right? Like, and I know some , some of the coaching community or the counseling community would , would not appreciate me saying this, but they could, you know, if somebody came in and needed more of a coach, they were there as a coach. If somebody needed more of a counselor, they were there as a counselor, but then importantly, like able to switch gears as necessary as the client needs changed. And , and that, I think this idea of the coach needs to meet the client where they are in terms of that is a little bit of a change that I saw, at least from my field's perspective. It was so , you know, the field had been like, you need to go to a debt counselor for this, a credit counselor for that, a coach for that, a financial counselor for this, which makes it so hard on clients, right. They don't have the time to do that. They need to walk in and be able to be served where they are. So I think that was really kind of a key component too.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. Sarah , you make such a good example of why we should all continuing our education, right. Just because we have one certification, it isn't enough. I love that example of switching hats from coaching to counseling and back and forth to meet the clients. And that sounds like what was a big that's what made this program so successful is that ability to meet the clients where they are and not just send them on to another person.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. Another thing that was crucial to success on this, and we could see that the variance of this site by site was the buy-in from the host, because if the host saw the importance of the financial aspect in whatever issue or whatever service they were delivering, boy, did it take off, I'll tell you as soon as, as the coach was able to, and they were wonderful, we didn't hire them to be outreach and marketers, let me tell you. And we quickly found out that that is a skill they had to have, and, and we got them training very quickly on how to do that. But once they got buy-in from their colleagues in the site, or the leadership boy, things really changed because, you know, for a while it was like, well, what's your financial goal. Yeah . You know, we don't have financial goals, we have life goals and there's a financial component to it. So those are the kind of things that the coaches were able to do. And I think that really helped us be successful.

Speaker 4:

Pam's is a really good point about host sites <laugh> and I think we, we spent so much time on that. I mean, really, we, we were on the road quite a bit and especially in the earlier days, and it was so important that we were, because, you know, I would , I'm thinking about legal services. I think financial coaching or counseling connected with legal services is a huge opportunity. And so incredibly important when you think about all the financial stuff that comes up in those legal, you know, settlements, et cetera , however, attorneys are accustomed to working. There's like attorney client privilege, or, you know, they don't, they're not accustomed to sharing any information and working across the hallway with a different colleague. They're not accustomed to that, like in social services where you have a team often working on with a client in a holistic way, that's not how legal services works. And so that was really hard, culturally, it was a , it was a big culture shift for them. And so we had to, I remember Pam, we went to one of our sites that was a legal services. And, and we, we knew from over the phone conversations with the coach, that she was really struggling, really struggling to integrate like the , the legal services attorneys. Aren't really referring clients. They assume don't seem to get what I do. I'm having a really hard time. And we went and visited and we saw she was in, you know, or like, where is your office? And she like, walked us down the hall. She kept walking down the hall. Then she went to the back, she went through the supply closet and then her office was in the back in the supply closet. Oh wow. And the poor woman, you know, so , so of course, like right away, it was a aha moment for us, like, okay, we need our coaches to be visible. We need to actually create structure for them. And then, you know, they put a lot on themselves too, in terms of figuring out the outreach and the marketing, but what a learning curve for us.

Speaker 3:

Oh, it was huge. And, and the same thing happened, of course, when we're dealing with the, the veteran programs and the AJCs, and we did get to have some veteran, if , if you couldn't walk up and speak their language, you know, that's why we had to go visit them and let them know that we, we are in fact veterans ourselves. And, you know, I mean, me and , and Steph were, and, you know, because veterans, believe it or not are not trusting people. You know, a lot of times people are trying to take advantage of them. So we would walk in and they would go, yeah, sure. You're gonna give us this for free. Right. What's the catch. And then you're gonna start talking to 'em about their money. Yeah. Right. We're not letting you do that. So it took us quite a while. And our coaches, we had military spouses who are just amazing hires. And then we had, you know, veterans on our team. And then, you know, a lot of our, our , our ABC coaches at the hybrids, you know, they started to learn how to speak military. We taught Sarah how to speak

Speaker 4:

<laugh> in military time. Right. Like I remember military polyus five minutes early is on time.

Speaker 5:

And you're late exactly .

Speaker 4:

Coming from nonprofits. Like that was, that was a wake up call <laugh> .

Speaker 3:

Yeah . And I can , I'll never forget the first time that, that step . And I were gonna go to an EVC site with Sarah . We showed up and of course in our D O D uniforms, which is a suit. And she said, oh my God,

Speaker 4:

That off, put on a sweater, you take that jacket off, take off that time ,

Speaker 3:

Take

Speaker 4:

It off . We're gonna put a cardigan on you. <laugh>

Speaker 3:

Exactly. It's like, we cannot walk you in there looking like this. So we all learned so much. I will tell you, you know, and, and learning about the challenges from inner city , Detroit, to rural West Virginia, to all down the coast of California and everything in between, you know, folks just need this. It's, you know, the people that our coaches were dealing with telling them, go to this website, or here's his pamphlet is, is not gonna cut it. It's, you know, they , they needed the coach to be there. And to sometimes just to give 'em a little bit of information, maybe just one session, and it was remarkable what you could do in one session. And, and I , I'm always gonna be in awe of the work our coaches did.

Speaker 2:

Well , Pam I'm even guessing, just being heard. Right. Just for people to feel like they've been heard and that someone is listening and caring about them when they're in a really vulnerable position.

Speaker 4:

Yeah. I remember. So the way we picked our sites was we had this whole crazy fancy algorithm, data driven approach to find communities. We knew , we knew we only had so many sites that we're like, how are we gonna , you know, where do we approach this as a national agency in national program? And so we, we kind of spit all this data, like unemployment rate and, and just vulnerability and veteran and all this stuff. And it spa out all these locations. And then we started to refine which cities and refine which organizations. And it was so interesting to see, like Pamela saying, just the diversity of need out there. Like I remember in Maine, I was like, you know, when I heard the city that we're gonna focus in, in Maine, I'm like, that's, to me, that's like a tourist town, like big sailboats. And, and then you get to the community and you're like, there are people serving, you know, the rich, the tourists that are coming in and they're living in homeless shelters and, or there's the lobsterman who makes, you know, a , a bunch of money for three or four months out of the year, and then the rest of the year, no money's coming in. And so it was just really fascinating to learn about that . We knew the need was out there, but we just learned such like, it's so different in every community. But so that , so similar at the same time.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, no, that's incredibly interesting to realize how important the individual and the financial counselor , it's the human touch, right? It's the ability to connect with the client wherever they are in whatever way you can. And I really appreciate your stories on that because it really empowers those of us in the field, still working to realize even the way we dress, the , the way we, we lean in the way we act, what we know about their world is just as important as what we have to tell them. And the advice that we give. So , uh , I'd like to know what are some of your biggest learnings from the program were , what would you do to improve the program if you were to do this again in the future?

Speaker 3:

Well, I will talk about outcome measures first, because these were a challenge.

Speaker 4:

Uh , oh , where's she going with this? <laugh> no ,

Speaker 3:

Sarah , Sarah taught me so well about outcome measures and outcome measures that are common sense because first off coaches, you know, they wanna coach, they don't wanna put stuff in a machine. So our MIS our maintenance in our information system, we try to keep that as simple and as easy to track the outcomes, because of course we owe our funders. In our case, we owe our taxpayers to show the good we were doing, but we, we had to be careful, especially with the service member community or the veteran community, because they don't like to be asked a lot of questions, quite frankly. And, and I don't want you writing down a lot of stuff about me either. So we were very careful about what we could do, but understanding what makes sense to measure, because this was all about the consumer and our measurement was what's your goal. And did you meet it? Well, a lot of times the goal is gonna take years, but there's gates that you made in between. So capturing that, so that our coaches kind of got credited, if you will, of, of the wonderfulness that they were doing , um, without burdening them with all of, you know, spreadsheets on top of spreadsheet, it was a , it was a dance we did. And I, I think we wound up doing it pretty well. What do you think Sarah?

Speaker 4:

I do. Yeah. And Pam, I do credit you for pushing hard on that. You know, there's a few things that Pam pushed really hard on, and it was eye opening for me, cuz I came from like the nonprofit space, the funder space and where, and even in government space where outcome measures and tracking and like it's just such so such a given, but yet there's not a lot of thought put into, Hey, this is actually really messed up in a lot of ways and what a disservice, you know, we're doing and like really the it's the coach that needs to focus on, on really serving the clients. And so anyway, so I really credit Pam for pushing back so hard. And I do think we ended up in a good place and you know, the really cool thing about coaching is because it's long term and we didn't put any constraints. We didn't say like, Hey, you can't work with someone. You know, over time we saw some really cool results of people who came back like a year later, more than a year, two years, and how the growth of that client that I don't think a lot of people get to see when they have those shorter term relationships. And I, you know , I wish we could have gone further with our program so we could have seen even more progress made for the client.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. And, and Sarah , I have to give her credit because she made sure we had evidence cuz you know me, I would've been like, yeah , we're doing great. Let me tell you the story about blah, blah, blah <laugh> . She was like, no, we , we need need more than that. And I'm like, absolutely. So it really turned out to be , uh , a wonderful thing, but you know, she hit it on the head. It's the trust. It's the trust that we had in each other, as a leadership team, but also the trust that the clients had with the coaches, because as she said, they would come back to them. Sometimes one, one and DUNS , we used to call them at first, people were like, oh we're not doing the right thing cuz they're not coming back. Well, we did the right thing cuz they don't have to come back. But they would come back when they were up with a new financial challenge, you know, they bought the house, they had the baby, they lost a job, they got a new job, they got a new raise. So once that continuum of services happened because of that trust, it was just remarkable to see everything we did was done for the first time, because this was never done before in a government. So it was, and , and we had a lot of eyes watching, so, and , and a lot of input and, and it was our job , uh , to make sure that we kept the standard. And that's one thing the AFC allowed us to do in a lot of ways because you know, it's one thing to be caring and listening. And, but if somebody's in a crisis, they come in with the IRS, braid them down their neck. It's not the time to, you know, so how do you feel about this? You know , it's time to get them what they need and then follow up with, all right , now, what did this do with the rest of your life and how did this derail your goals? So those are the kind of things that we saw on a day to day basis with these coaches and, and they were amazing. And they were just a great group of folks. And you know, they always managed to have some fun along the way, which I appreciated

Speaker 1:

Pam . One of the things you mentioned, which I think is really interesting is the fact that the coaches really built relationships. And so people would come in for one issue. They might work through that. And then because you were there a couple years later, something new would come up and suddenly, you know, you' built capacity within the community. They had some place to turn to. I'm curious, you know, what advice you would have for organizations or funders that might be interested in building a model like this, whether, you know, that's partnering with different hosts sites within the community, you know, what , what would you say to someone who says this model is, is pretty incredible? How do we start to build that capacity? So, you know, it's not just 60 sites, but you know, communities across the country have this type of service available.

Speaker 3:

My advice would be first off, get your champions. It , you know, if you think it's a good idea, get the people above you and get the people with the purse strings to understand, get 'em a coaching session. I'm telling you, you go in a coaching session and, and you , you buy in. We found that at a lot of the host sites, make sure the people understand how you're not trying to make this, this central goal of the service. It is something that pairs with people that are trying to better their lives, that this is a big piece that deters people from reaching their goals. And, and that's where I would start. I would go to where the successes were with other services and show them and sell them quite frankly, on how this could make their service even better. And that the successes for their community are going to be even better. And, and that you would be able to track some outcomes for them as well. So that would also help them get funding for whatever they're looking for and then market market market. I cannot stress that because people don't talk about their financial issues. You need to make sure that people understand that this is a safe place because there's way too many crooks out there trying to say they do the same thing. So going through a trusted agent already to folks, I think is key.

Speaker 4:

Yeah. Pam covered it. While we, we were at the point where we were trying to think about, you know, how do we understand how, you know, for example, we had a lot of coaches in workforce sites. How do we understand how, you know, not just the, the coaching kind of financial goals, outcomes, how do they look, but also how is it impacting on the workforce side or like on the legal services outcome side. And we didn't quite get there, but, but there was some promising anecdotal stuff. And I think that can really make the case because coaching is such a wonderful complimentary service to all these other services

Speaker 3:

And then making sure that they hire coaches with the correct certifications and ones that understand the population they're going to be dealing with as well. I think that is crucial because then you have a standard. I mean, everybody knows what a CFP is or a , you know, but sometimes they don't understand the , the magic of an AFC, which is further kicked up when they get those coaching skills through an FFC kind of training. That is just a wonderful combination.

Speaker 2:

You guys have made such a great case. I even see the application for individuals, those that are in just practicing at an individual level, it's a lot of the same things to market market market and to get your certification and to have something have multiple certifications. It's not a one and done , but it's being able to shift gears as you need to with clients and be able to complete and help the client. However, it is as well as I think there's so much rich content here for any listeners out there that are already running a financial capability center or something of the , like it has application for schools, for universities, for government entities. I mean, there's so many ways, and I think it's great that you guys started this at CFPB and we just hope this will be a model for many, many more to come, cuz I think there's so much opportunity richness here. Well, ladies, at the end of each interview, we like to ask our guests to share their 2 cents. If each of you had one piece of advice to leave with our listeners, what would it be?

Speaker 3:

The goal is to never forget it's about the client. It's not about the coach. It's not about the bean counters. It's not about the funders, all of that has to happen, but never lose sight. That it's about the client and what they need. We're personal financial specialists that can have a lot of skills in our bag. We can, you know, do all those things, but we need to make sure it's not about us telling them all the stuff we can do for them. It's listening and meeting them with the information or whatever they need so they can make their goals and ultimately be happy. That's all we ever want is all , all of us wanna be happy.

Speaker 4:

I would say that the importance of this, really the importance of having a professional person who, you know, can be supportive, provide the guidance you need, the , the coaching, if you will, is incredibly important. When you think about anything else, right? Like, you know, money is for better, for worse is that it's a key part of our lives. The financial success really, you know, is such an important part of our lives. And we don't think twice when, you know, we think I have to go to the doctor because I'm having this issue, you know, and a doctor's a well trained professional, right? And when you think about that in terms of financial lives, we expect consumers to be these crazy experts. And , and then we blame them when they don't understand or they trip up or they don't have enough money right. To get through the month. And , and it's just like the , I feel like it's one of the only places where there's such a unfair burden and blame put on the consumer. And so, and , and it's almost like we don't recognize like how, you know, we need doctors to help us with our health and you also need professionals to help us to help with your financial health.

Speaker 1:

Thank you both so much for joining us on the show today. Can you tell listeners where they can connect with you?

Speaker 3:

I'm happily retired, but I do have , um , <laugh> I do have some , uh , consulting business on this side. So you can't reach out to me.

Speaker 4:

I think the best place would probably be LinkedIn. So just Sarah BA and con at LinkedIn, I'm happy to talk to anybody about coaching.

Speaker 2:

Well, thank you both for joining us what an incredible amount of information this is for any listeners out there. We appreciate you joining us today.

Speaker 3:

Well, thanks for the invitation. It was a lot of fun.

Speaker 4:

Thank you,

Speaker 2:

Rachel. It is so good to hear about not just about the program and what it did, but I see the capacity for future opportunities here. Uh , at both, like you mentioned before at both the individual level, but especially at the higher level where you've got group coaching, you've got the ability to get this out through multiple facets. And I love the connection between both veteran population and the underserved, the economically challenged population, and that serves a huge audience. And I think it's a great model that individuals and companies or groups, nonprofit organizations or government organizations can take and learn from, and really have a good head start on future financial coaching opportunities. I think there's so much to be learned from this discussion and I'm excited that it happened, but really excited for the future that still exists because once someone's taken that first step, it allows for all the others to be so much easier going forward. So I hope this helps anybody out there listening and considering this as an opportunity.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, Mary, I couldn't agree more and I'm so excited to sort of highlight this program. You know, although it happened a couple years ago, the information that was learned from this is so relevant even today and especially in the year that we're celebrating the AFC, just, you know, the value of providing counselors and coaches with, you know, making sure that they have that subject matter expert. But if they're also able to really meet people where they are, and this program did something so unique where they put counselors, you know, in organizations, right within communities where they were trusted, you know, and could provide almost wraparound services to, you know, make sure that they're not only reaching financial goals, but more importantly, that they're reaching life goals. And I'm really excited. And I hope this episode inspires people to take a look at that report , reach out, you know, and start to figure out what they can learn to bring this to their own communities.

Speaker 2:

You know, Rachel, one thing I do wanna add to this too , was I thought it was a beautiful discussion of how coaching and counseling work hand in hand , they are too distinct professions, but there's so much overlap. And I think that it's important that we know the differences and similarities, and that you have tools from both because there's good that you can do and help clients in so many ways if you know the skillset for both counseling and coaching.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. I mean, Sarah said it really well. It allows you to pivot. And you know, when this program came about, that's when we worked with Sage financial solutions to help incubate their financial coaching certification and where we started to realize that there are so many words in the field to describe this kind of work, but really the AFC is that core knowledge. And coaching's almost like a verb <laugh> that can be applied to all types of financial services. You know, I think planners can benefit from those coaching skills too. And it just really allows you to work with someone who's in crisis, but to also help people develop solutions that work for them . And so, yeah, this is a beautiful program that really married the two and, and I hope it does inspire some people, you know, to start looking at what they can do in their own community to ensure that people have these services and know where to find them and know where trusted professionals , um , are based. Thanks again for listening in today, for those who are interested every year, we have a symposium this year, we will be in Orlando, Florida, November 16th or 18th, just around the corner is the deadline for our invitation to present. Please, if you have interested in participating in this year's symposium, visit our website, submit a proposal. We'd love to see you in November. Thanks again for listening until next time.