Alexander (Alex) DiMartini, Certified Investment Management Analyst® Professional, Managing Director at SoundView Wealth Management Group LLC, shared his experience with the CIMA® Certification Exam Prep Workshop from Chicago Booth, how it prepared him for the CIMA® Certification exam, and how it has enhanced his professional growth.
Why did you want to take Booth's CIMA Certification Exam Prep Workshop?
As a financial advisor working with retail investors, I wanted to elevate my discussions with my clients to help them better understand the balance between risk and return. I was particularly drawn to the structure of Chicago Booth’s workshop because of its focus on behavioral finance and financial analytics. I also believed that the prestige of the CIMA® designation would help boost my practice and set me apart from other financial advisors.
How was the Booth experience different from other business schools?
I believe the interactive approach that Chicago Booth uses is much more beneficial than the self-study programs that other schools employ. I also truly felt that Chicago Booth was my partner in preparing me for the exam. My instructor, Kathleen Fitzgerald, was amazing. She communicated in a way that allowed me to build the tools and better understand and implement them during the exam. One comment she shared, which had a lasting impact on me was: “This material is not something you can memorize—you truly have to understand it.”
How have you integrated the frameworks you learned into your organization and role?
The dynamics of my conversations with my clients and prospective clients have changed. I now can introduce the concept of downside risk into a conversation in a way I could not before. This empowers me to help my clients set expectations so they gain more confidence in the portfolio I have created for them. I have also been able to bring to light the fact that financial indexes derive returns from a very small grouping of the largest stocks in that index and thereby avoid replicating that process. I believe my practice has improved greatly since attending the CIMA program. I’m now able to demystify portfolio management by better-setting client expectations and moderating their behavior through financial education.
What are some of the key takeaways you have gained from the CIMA Workshop?
My key takeaways from the CIMA workshop include a renewed focus on the behavioral side of finance, as well as learning the importance of behavioral biases and how individuals make financial decisions. I have gained a better understanding of what is behind the numbers when utilizing financial planning tools like Riskalyze or TIFIN Wealth to construct portfolios. In addition, having the ability to compute an expected rate of return as I learned in the program is truly eye-opening for my clients.
Why did you choose Chicago Booth?
I chose Booth because of its reputation and my overall respect for the school. The professors have real-world experience that is not only experiential but data-driven.
About the Chicago Booth CIMA® Education Program and CIMA® Certification Exam Prep Workshop
About CIMA® Certification: Certified Investment Management Analyst® (CIMA®) certification is the peak international, technical portfolio construction program for investment consultants, analysts, financial advisors and wealth management professionals. CIMA® certification continues to be the highest level of advanced investment education for client-facing advisors.
The Chicago Booth CIMA® Education is a CIMA ® Certification Registered Education course* that offers an online, blended learning experience for your convenience. This flexible format allows you to work at your own pace and provides you the opportunity to engage with Booth faculty through a live, recorded virtual classroom environment. When you enroll in the program, you'll also gain access to a CIMA® Certification Exam Prep Workshop, an intense preparation workshop offered in your choice of online or in-person (Chicago) instruction. You may also register for the workshop separately.
Learn more about how this program can benefit your career at Chicagobooth.edu/CIMA
*INVESTMENTS & WEALTH INSTITUTE® is a registered mark of Investment Management Consultants Association Inc. (“IMCA”) doing business as The Investments & Wealth Institute (“The Institute”). CIMA® and CERTIFIED INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT ANALYST® are registered certification marks of IMCA d/b/a The Institute. As described in the CIMA Candidate Handbook, completion of an executive education program offered through a Registered Education Provider does not result in attainment of the CIMA certification nor does it award use of the certification marks. Completion of an executive education program results in a candidate becoming eligible to sit for the CIMA Certification Exam and thereafter to complete the remaining steps for certification. Please visit investmentsandwealth.org for the most up-to-date information.