If you've thought about turning to a pro for help when it comes to investing, you might need a guide to find one. There are more than 100 different professional designations out there from accredited estate planners to wealth management specialists. You can't be an expert at everything. That's why people turn to professionals for help. But the right money pro might be harder to find than a certified mechanic or licensed contractor. At least if all you look at is the initials after their name. When it comes to designations, there are close to a hundred. So when you need advice, what do you look for? Answer: ignore the alphabet soup and focus on some other things first. Like exactly how they propose to work with you. "I'm going to go through a very thorough questionnaire for you. I'm going to fully understand your whole makeup. Not only what risk tolerance you have, but what you're trying to achieve and what your goals are." That's the kind of holistic response you're looking for. Next? How they get paid: Ideal answer? "I get paid as a consultant. I don't get any commissions. By doing that, it enables you to remain completely objective." Once you've got those questions answered, then see what those designations are all about. You can go online and make sure they were earned, find out what they mean, and if there's any disciplinary history. And if you don't know where to start your search, try an accountant. "An accountant usually...if he's been in the business any number of years... 10, 15 years... he's already developed a network of lawyers and financial advisers that he can trust. He's not going to send people there if it's not going to work out, cause he's going to use clients."