In today’s episode of Framework, Jamie talks with Lazetta Braxton. Lazetta has been deeply involved with the CFP industry for a long time. She’s on the board for AAAA Foundation as well as making regular appearances on CNBC.  Lazetta is a leading figure in the diversity and inclusion front for the industry, challenging firms to #dothework on cultural competency and diversity.

Growing up in a family that had to take on a lot of debt to keep up with the bills, Lazetta was determined to figure out the mechanisms that keep people in the cycle of debt. To that end, she attended the University of Virginia to study finance and to be around wealth in hopes of better understanding it.

She began her career on the accounting side of business, but slowly moved into investments and wealth management. Financial planning didn’t come into the picture until after she earned her MBA, at which time she started looking at financial planning in a more holistic way than was being done at the time.

Lazetta talks with Jamie about how her career evolved, teaching people cultural competency, diversity in the financial services industry, and how to be transparent in the right ways.

(44:37) “You have to show people and teach people cultural competency. Even if you show them that, it doesn’t mean that you’re going to be received. We can really tell if you’re authentic or not. That’s why I always tell firm leaders that you are your best marketing, your people are, we can’t do that for you. You’ve got to do the work. ~ @lazettabraxton

Main Takeaways

  • Closing the wealth gap is an important mission for many African American CFPs
  • Transparency is the name of the game when working with clients as you’re entering a very intimate part of their lives and they should feel open right from the beginning.
  • Supporting organizations and schools that help African Americans enter the CFP workforce is crucial in diversifying the available talent pool.
  • If your company is looking for diverse talent, make sure you ask yourself if you’re ready for that talent. Cultural competency is key in getting those people through the door.

Links and Important Mentions

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