We all grow up with messages around money that can be hard to shake, ("Money doesn't go on trees", "There's not enough to go around," "Share nicely!") As women, it is often actively discouraged to talk about money as we grow up, which stays with us as adults; "It's not polite to talk about money."
So being a leader in your life and career is that much more difficult if you do not feel empowered with money and wealth.
If you don't know her yet, I'd like to introduce you to my new #girlcrush , Sallie Krawcheck, CEO and founder of Ellevest, who had a head-slapping moment as a former Wall Street financial guru, at one point running Merrill Lynch, when she realised that "the investing industry has been, frankly, “by men, for men” — and has historically kept women from achieving their financial goals."
Completely makes sense - women earn less, and live longer, and the investment advice doled out by men fits the male investment profile - men who earn more, live shorter and don't have career breaks to have children. As the Ellevest website says, "86% of investment advisors are men with an average age of 50+. So the “gender-neutral” investment industry defaults to men’s salaries, career paths, preferences and lifespans.
She debunks the myth that women are more cautious investors. She says we're not - we like a high-risk investment as much as the next man. It's just that we want to KNOW and understand and like to ask questions before committing. We're risk aware - and that's called PRUDENT investing!
I've been following her for a while now, after my mentor suggested I take a look at her. Seriously...#girlcrush
I LOVE EVERYTHING SHE SAYS - if you want to unlock your power and confidence in your life and career, start by having power and confidence with your money. Learn to talk about money and feel comfortable with it.
So, with that in mind:
- KNOW how much you earn gross and net on a monthly basis.
- KNOW how much you spend and where it goes on a monthly basis.
- KNOW how much you want to earn within a specific timeframe.
- KNOW your vision, your investment goals - a house? Travel? Retirement fund?
- KNOW what return you need to make as an investor to fulfil these goals.
- KNOW what type of investor you are by assessing your risk profile. (You can find an investor questionnaire online or if you speak to a wealth manager, that will be one of the first things they ask you to complete.)
- KNOW to structure your investments to spread risk into short, medium, long-term with diverse investments.
There are so many tools online available now, that even if you don't take charge by appointing a wealth manager, you can go along way to educating yourself, and getting comfortable with money and wealth.
And TALK about money with friends. The type of conversation you hear men have, standing around the BBQ.
PS This is NOT financial advice. I have NO affiliation with Sallie Krawcheck or Ellevest. In fact, I can't invest with them because I don't live in the US. I just LOVE what she has to say about wealth, money, women, entrepreneurship, leadership and the changing face of business. I 100% agree with what she says.
PPS Want to start a conversation about this? Head over to my private FB group. I'm starting a thread this week about money and wealth. This topic lights people up in a way I've never seen before, so be part of the discussion!