RFN Academy’s Path to Success Program is an eight-week program designed for professionals who work or would like to work closely with business owners to support their transition-readiness endeavours. 

The hands-on training features 90-minute weekly interactive virtual sessions with expert presenters and peer-learning opportunities in an interactive community, supported further by tools, resources and exercises.  

The program also includes one-on-one coaching opportunities with course instructors.

Your participation is a great way to expand your expertise and invest in your professional development.

CEPA and CFP credits available on completion. 

Why participate

  • Leave the program with the confidence to approach business owners in a way you have not done before.

  • Connect with the core concepts of transition planning, value acceleration and transition-readiness.

  • Establish a structured approach for owner client and prospect engagements.

  • Learn techniques for mutual exploration and transformational selling.

  • Enhance your practice and build on what you learned with regular coaching opportunities with Cindy and Sean.

  • Access to tools, resources and learn from a cohort of like-minded advisors.

Watch Intro Video

Session Start Dates

Cohort Advisor Groups

Join our next cohort of advisors starting in January.

Program Outline

Live virtual Sessions, videos, resources, marketing templates, exercises and more.

  • 1

    Program Introduction

    • Welcome

    • Program Overview

    • Goals

    • Onboarding

    • Terms of Engagement

    • Weekly Zoom Live Meetings

    • RFN Team Contact Information

    • Resources

  • 2

    8 week Advisor Community

    • RFN Advisor Cohort Community

  • 3

    Opportunity Tracking

    • Opportunity Tracker

  • 4

    Week 1: Qualification

    • Goals

    • Setting Key Performance Indicators

    • Baby Boomer Business Market

    • The Business Life Cycle

    • Resources - Business Life Cycle

    • Ideal Client Profile

    • Ideal Client Worksheet

    • Start thinking about your hook

    • Data Mining

    • Psychographics Profiles of Self-employed

    • Action Plan

    • Resource Links

    • Week 1 Recording

    • Week 1 Slides

    • Reflections and Observations

  • 5

    Week 2: Implement and Adapt

    • The Neuroscience of Effective Conversations - Part 1

    • The Neuroscience of Effective Conversations - Part 2

    • Think about Social Styles

    • Social Selling

    • Developing Your Hook

    • Hook Call

    • Hook Examples

    • Process

    • Tools and Downloads

    • Action Items

    • Week 2 Recording

    • Week 2 Slides

    • Reflections and Observations

  • 6

    Week 3: Initial Outreach

    • Value Proposition

    • Meeting clients where they are

    • Exploring

    • Pivoting

    • Triggering

    • Outreach

    • Are you a good listener?

    • Meeting 1 - Connect Sample Plan

    • Meeting 2 - Solution Sample Plan

    • Tools and Downloads

  • 7

    Week 4: Meet clients where they are

    • RFN Solutions

    • Readiness Scorecard

    • RFN Transition Readiness Scorecard

    • Reflections and observations

  • 8

    Week 5: Mutual Exploration

    • Opening Conversations

    • Introducing Value Acceleration and RFN

  • 9

    Week 6: Meeting Structure

    • Seek to understand

    • Meeting structure and tips

  • 10

    Week 7: Goal Setting

    • Goal Setting

    • Path to Success Gameplan

    • Bullseye Exercise

    • Planning Template

    • Planning Template Fillable

  • 11

    Week 8: What's next

    • Building your team

What participants are saying


Merrill Lynch Advisor

Excellent and would recommend to others. It takes the knowledge we learned in the CEPA designation and allowed me to create a marketing plan to approach business owners."

New opportunities

Wealth Advisor

I have taken what I have learned in the program back to my team and it has opened up new opportunities with owners already.

Provides a framework

CEPA Advisor

The course has provided a framework to help develop my brand as a resource for business owners and centers of influence and being their quarterback for education on exit planning.

Eye Opener

Bank Advisor

It has been an eye opener for me, I have introduced succession planning to existing clients that I have never opened up this conversation before.



I give this course 5 stars. It added tremendous value to my practice!


Partner, Strategic Development and Partnerships (USA)

Sean Hutchinson,


Over Sean Hutchinson’s 30 years in business, the most valuable lessons he has learned have been from business owners who generously shared their stories of success and struggle. Sean’s primary focus is strategy and growth. He helps owners and their leadership teams to imagine what being a ‘company of the future’ looks like for them, and then helps them achieve it.

Partner, Strategic Development and Partnerships (Canada)

Cindy Reid-Shelton,


Throughout Cindy Reid’s nearly 30 years as a trusted advisor and instructor in the financial industry, she has endeavoured to deliver the best advice available to clients and advisors alike. As an industry professional and business owner who knows the value of expert advice, Cindy is committed to education and keeping on top of the ongoing evolution of the financial and economic landscapes. She has successfully achieved accreditation as a Certified Financial Planner (CFP), Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC), Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU), Trust and Estate Practitioner (TEP), Certified Exit Planning Advisor (CEPA) and Certified Business Advisor (CBA).

What is included

  • Live Interactive Training

    90-minute weekly sessions designed with the cohort approach of accelerated learning. Access to recordings throughout the program.

  • Resources and Tools

    Variety of resources and tools to support your approach with business owners.

  • Community Groups

    A dedicated Advisor Community for sharing and developing connections with the group.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is my time commitment?

    We estimate the time commitment to the program 2-3 hours a week. Each week there is a live virtual session for 60-90 minutes.
    The program also includes self-paced learning and resources in addition to the live sessions.
    There are action items, exercises and tools to support development opportunities in your practice.

  • What does cohort-approach mean?

    A cohort is a group of participants that start a program together and remain together throughout its duration. The cohort model enhances the speed of learning while encouraging both collaboration and professional success.
    Because of the supportive interaction among participants, cohorts provide a community to create a professional network of peers.
    The Path to Success Program has an online community and live virtual sessions to support each cohort.

  • What if I cannot make a live session?

    We understand that our lives are busy with competing priorities. All live sessions will be recorded for access anytime during the program.

Contact us directly to learn more.

We look forward to hearing from you.