I have spent my career in the financial service industry primarily working with clients to design and help to implement financial and estate plans for themselves and their families. Over time, the conversations evolved from predominantly investment discussions to broader, more meaningful discussions about family dynamics, feelings about investment risk, and how these factors build the foundation for truly thoughtful financial planning. Because of this change in the conversation, it became increasingly important to make sure that women were more engaged.
Over time, I took a more active role in planning discussions with clients. I made it a point to get to the heart of the matter—the fears, doubts, hopes and dreams—that served as the impetus for the investment management work my group did for their families. And it made a difference.
I truly believe that emotional, personal issues are at the core of financial planning. Whether it’s leaving behind a meaningful legacy for family members or addressing fears and insecurities about understanding personal finances, financial planning is about listening and helping people feel secure, confident, supported and empowered to handle their financial lives.
When I began to work with women more closely, I found that in many cases, they had not been a part of the financial conversations, and as a result, were uncomfortable asking questions or not interested in joining the conversation at all. In my experience, women often take a back seat when it comes to understanding the family finances. Increasingly, however, more and more of my clients are women, and as a woman, I believe I’m more in-tune with how they think and how they feel, which helps me help them in a more meaningful way. I pride myself on being able to speak to my female clients in a way that’s genuine, empathetic and never patronizing. There is, in fact, a more emotional component to the way women look at their planning, and this is what truly gets to the heart of a family’s goals.
It’s time for this to become the standard,
There are so many women who want help, education and guidance when it comes to financial planning, and they don’t know who to turn to. My goal is to foster a safe environment for women to open up about their financial concerns and confusions without fear of judgement, ask questions and learn about the financial matters that are important to them. We will all find ourselves facing transitions over the course of our lifetimes, whether it be the loss of a spouse, divorce, health event or any number of other things. To face those transitions is daunting, and I am committed to help other women feel like the perceived burden of managing their finances is not a burden at all when they have the knowledge they need and a network of advocates in their corner.