Advocis launches members-only directory

Advocis launches members-only directory

Advocis launches members-only directory

“All financial planning organizations are full of improving knowledge and standards of their members, so they can do a better job for consumers,” says David Christianson, senior advisor at Christianson Wealth Advisors, National Bank Financial. “Consumer education and services like this new directory are all positive steps.”

Some advisors aren’t convinced the directory will serve much purpose at all, nor of Advocis' altruistic motives.

“Online Internet directories are just gimmicks. Anyone with enough money and time can end up first in Google, which is where people go first,” says Kevin Cahill, certified financial planner with Canadian Legacy Builder in Guelph. “I feel Advocis is investing money to talk about how great of a job they are doing, instead of ensuring that everyone is actually doing a good job.”

Cahill also feels members-only directory is discriminatory against other fully-qualified professionals who aren't Advocis members, and that, subsequently, the directory fails to provide consumers with the best selection of financial advisors on the market.  

“You can be fresh in the industry with no education and pay a reduced rate and belong to Advocis and appear on the website,” says Cahill. “Just because this person belongs to a national association means little in the bigger picture of professionalism. To be a professional, you need to be very educated, tested practically on that education and adhere to a code of ethics in a national organization.”

According to Advocis, it has 11,000 members, however those who do not provide direct financial advice will opt out of joining the directory. Check out the Find an Advisor directory at


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  • Kevin Cahill 2013-11-10 3:59:59 PM
    A marketing colleague shared this with me, but wished to remain anonymous as he relies on selling on ego, "Directories like this are the digital equivalent of real estate agents advertising their faces in local newspapers.
    They are basically perpetuating the belief in the minds of their members that membership is indeed essential because of inclusion in the directory. They seem to ignore the fact that 99% of the general public doesn't give a crap about these directories and doesn't use them."
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  • Steven Cartwright 2013-11-13 11:06:05 AM
    I have a marketing friend who says real estate faces help. I'd give up her name but who really cares? The public is conditioned to look for faces and this is something Advocis should be working on: conditioning the public to seek and research advisers.

    All hail omnipresent cynicism!
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  • Harley Lockhart CFP CLU CHFC 2013-11-13 11:31:34 AM
    This directory is part of the Advocis Professions Model, working toward increasing consumer protection by raising the standards of all financial professionals, even those just starting in the business.
    Kevin is correct that this site does not include non-members, but how can he claim it has no impact and that it is discriminatory both? It is a benefit of membership, which incidentally requires an annual attestation of conformance with a principle based Code of Conduct.
    In addition, the site provides a profile of the advisor to providing their experience, method of compensation and credentials so consumers may narrow the search for the best advisor for them--a little more than a picture in the newspaper.
    Check it out for yourself.
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