When Financial Advisor publishes its features on young advisors to watch every May, one of the interesting aspects of the profiles is to learn how many paths there are for young people to find their way into the profession.

Oftentimes, it’s a childhood or family experience that sparks an interest in personal finance. On other occasions, something happens early in their careers that drives them toward financial planning. Every now and then, one finds that rare individual who knew she or he was going to be a financial advisor when they were a teenager.

Some of the young advisors profiled in this month’s issue were children of immigrants who realized early on that America is a nation where people can prosper more than in most countries. But it’s also a nation where financial security is hardly a given. Rather, success is left largely up to the individual.

Most financial advisors are quick to realize that success and financial security are two completely different animals. Neither one guarantees the other. If career success ensured financial freedom, the advisory profession would not have exploded to the degree it has over the last four decades.

But as the pandemic transitions into an endemic, some of the illusions of the past two years are being exposed, starting with the wealth effect of 2020 and 2021 that left more Americans thinking, often mistakenly, that work was just an option. As Dave Sterman writes on page 51, more of those folks are starting to re-enter the job market.

Most experienced advisors recognize their skills should be largely confined to helping clients evaluate their career options from a financial standpoint. If they don’t have concrete experience and appropriate qualifications, providing career advice can be dangerous.

But with more people facing inflection points in their professional and financial lives, clients are asking questions that go beyond pure financial issues. Just as large RIA firms are starting to add experts in health and financial wellness to their staffs, a handful are also exploring career counseling. How these new areas of specialization evolve within the context of an advisory firm remains to be seen.

One thing is clear, however. As clients demand ever more complex services, the need for cohesive teamwork is continually expanding. That’s a subject addressed by Philip Palaveev and Stuart Silverman on page 20, one of many must-read articles in this month’s issue. Enjoy.

Evan Simonoff is Editor-in-Chief of Financial Advisor magazine. You can reach him at [email protected]