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05/18/2016

THE VALUE OF ACHIEVING THE CPYB CERTIFICATION

By Don Finkle, CPYB and YBAA Board Member

Don FinkleThose of you who are not yet Certified Professional Yacht Brokers (CPYB) may be like I was some years ago, skeptical of the value in return for the effort and expense, or maybe a bit intimidated by taking a three hour exam.  In my case, I felt that because I had been a successful broker for decades, I should not have to prove my ability by taking an exam.  However, I came to realize that I was becoming an outlier as more and more of my peers saw the value of achieving the CPYB designation.  It also became apparent that those who were certified were looked at more favorably by fellow brokers and more importantly by consumers purchasing boats. It was time to set aside my pride and begin to study for the exam. Despite my forty years of experience I found that there were many things in the study material that I did not know. I am now more confident as a broker thanks to the time devoted to study and learning new things.  In fact, I recently reviewed The Guide from front to back and found the refresher to be helpful. 

Once I earned my CPYB I felt a sense of pride because I had made the effort to improve myself professionally. Now I was on equal ground with the other CPYBs from a credentials standpoint. I could also use the CPYB designation in my signatures and personal marketing materials, where appropriate.  As soon as the other brokers in the office earned their CPYB designation they felt a similar feeling and stood a little taller. In addition, thanks to their accomplishment allowed us to qualify as a CPYB Endorsed Brokerage, which carries with it even greater marketing benefits.

When you are a CPYB you carry the added responsibility of acting in a professional and ethical manner.  Your peers know this and you know this and you are able to remind your clients of this.  It goes a long way towards keeping everyone performing as they should.  The efforts made to develop the CPYB program were bold and forward-thinking in order to establish professional standards so that others would have a better understanding of the industry and also to minimize the possibility of outside regulation.  It has proven to be one of the most important things that ever happened to the yacht sales and brokerage profession and industry.

Beneteau America understands the value of the CPYB program and has mandated that all Platinum dealer salespersons who are eligible must earn their CPYB membership if the dealership wishes to be considered for this prestigious status.  We understand that others, including Jeanneau, are following suit.  As more publicity is generated, those who are not CPYB certified will be seen differently than those who hold the certification.  Even now, there are many brokers who will only deal with others who are CPYBs because of the confidence and trust that the CPYB designation provides.

As a YBAA Board member I can confirm the Board's commitment and effort to encourage every YBAA member to become certified.  As a Certification Advisory Council (CAC) member I can attest to the fact that YBAA and the other six CPYB co-sponsoring associations throughout North America are committed to vigorously supporting and promoting the CPYB program. 

If you are serious about your profession and our industry you should earn and maintain the CPYB status.  The recertification process requires attaining 30 continuing education credits over a 3 year period and is simple and achievable. We should all make an effort to be committed to lifelong learning. It is a small price to pay for your personal satisfaction and continued success.

Don Finkle started in the boat business in 1972 at RCR Yachts, becoming an owner in 1975 and currently serving as the CEO.  RCR is in the brokerage, yacht sales, boatyard and service businesses in the eastern Great Lakes.  Over the years RCR has represented many of the best boat builders in the industry and currently sells Alerion, Back Cove, Beneteau, C&C and Jboats.  Don has served on a number of industry boards and councils as well as being a longtime volunteer in a variety of sailing events of organizations.  He is an avid sailor and member of three sailing clubs.

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