Amy Wawia – MFA™ - Retirement and Succession Services Specialist

Amy is a graduate of the MFA™-Retirement and Succession Services Specialist program in Ontario. Amy had a special motivation for enhancing her education as part of her own succession planning. Her goal is to take over running her step dad’s tax and financial services business. Here’s her story:

How would you tell your Knowledge Bureau story to a friend?

“If I were telling a friend about my Knowledge Bureau story, I would let them know that it is a very interesting path to take toward a goal of working in the tax/finance industry. Their mind would be opened to new ways to look at their finances and plan accordingly for their future goals. Courses at Knowledge Bureau can be very enlightening for even day-to-day financial decisions whether you are a professional or not.

 Why did you decide to take Knowledge Bureau courses?

“I am working toward being able to run my stepdad’s business for him while he retires to the land of golf and relaxation!”

What did you find difficult?

“On occasion I would get frustrated with the static nature of the case studies.  I can be a bit of a perfectionist and one misplaced decimal, a typo, or an incorrect line entry could mean the difference between getting a 0 or 100%. However; this taught me to slow down, to double check all my entries, and not to overthink what was being asked of me. So as much as it was frustrating, it also helped me to build necessary skills that are extremely important in my profession today.”

Did anything surprise you in the courses?

“So many things!  It makes me laugh to think of the many mornings I would come to work so excited to tell my boss (also my step-father and a man who has been in the profession longer than I have been alive) all the new information I’d learned the previous night!  Of course, 99% of the time I was not telling such a seasoned pro anything he didn’t already know, but there was a time or two I did teach him something new (Fundamental Indexing comes to mind) and that surprised both of us.

If I had to pick only the ‘most’ surprising thing, it would be the realization that income tax should be part of the high school curriculum. Unless you actively seek it out as an adult, even the most basic tax knowledge eludes the average person. That may be the reason my profession exists, but the desire and ability to share with my clients what I have learned from Knowledge Bureau makes doing my job both pleasurable and rewarding.

How did you feel when taking the courses?

Excited! Each time I started a new course I found myself excited to see what I was going to learn next and I would wonder: how would it tie-in with what I had already learned? What thoughts and ideas would click for me this time (I had several ‘AH-HA!’ moments throughout the journey to my designation)?  Is there a client this relates to that I can help? I still get excited when I see tax planning working in the real world to the benefit of a client, and their successes become your successes!”

What did your family think about the amount of time spent?

“Last year I worked full time, went on a canoe trip for my birthday, planned and hosted our wedding at our home, took a honeymoon trip to Toronto (to see Foo Fighters in concert!!), and volunteered as treasurer on a local board of directors.  I am also the mother of an awesome little girl with a disability, so that means school meetings, out of town trip for doctors, etc.

With the support and encouragement of my husband I also completed my MFA designation in that same year and I’m not sure the kids even noticed!  I usually didn’t work on it before they’d gone to bed and if I happened to need to do some coursework on a weekend I was still home and available to them.”

Were you happy with the outcomes?

Absolutely! I love my career and for the first time in my life I look forward to going to work every day.  There is so much reward in seeing the face of a client I’ve helped light up with understanding as I walk them through one process or another, imparting on them knowledge I have gained through Knowledge Bureau.”

What are your future goals?

I honestly have a list to last a lifetime, but for the immediate future? I plan on enrolling in another program with Knowledge Bureau.  My overall goal with Knowledge Bureau is to earn my RWMTM, but I’ve been thinking about doing MFATM -Business Services Specialist first.

There will also come a future day that my stepdad retires, and I will run his business while he plays golf.  As it should be.”

Congratulations on all of your accomplishments, Amy!  

Additional Educational Resources: Sign up for the MFA™-Retirement and Succession Services Specialist program today, or start with a free trial.





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