The Next Generation of Women in Financial Planning
The economic might of women is large and growing. According to research by McKinsey and Company, women control a third of U.S. household financial assets — that’s more than $10 trillion. The report states, “By 2030, American women are expected to control much of the $30 trillion in financial assets that baby boomers will possess.”
Women are also finding themselves in the role of critical financial decision-makers: 30% more married women said they are making financial and investment decisions today than in 2015.
When it comes to seeking advice from financial advisors, studies show that women feel underserved and undervalued. Historically, many women have felt excluded from conversations around finances. Often there are stereotypes regarding gender-based roles.
Lorrie Baldevia, Principal and COO at AssuredPartners MCM, summed it up nicely.
“This is a relationship business, so if you already have clients and people trust the advice you give, in whatever capacity, it’s the same thing in this business. People want to work with people they like and trust.”
“Women, in general, might tend to have a more empathetic approach to their
clients’ problems. I don’t speak for all women, but I connect well because I listen and I don’t make assumptions – and perhaps because I am a young woman, people feel comfortable sharing feelings, concerns about their children, families, and financial situation. I pride myself on my warmth and willingness to listen,” said Emily Buretz, Advisor at The Madison Group, Inc.
“I’ve seen a mix of single, married, and divorced women. No matter the category, women want to be more involved in money conversations and decisions,” Spencer Fugita, Associate at Financial Designs Ltd said. “As a female in insurance, we almost have an advantage. There is an emotional and educational side of insurance, and we can tap into both. There is also the financial literacy side. We tend to go the extra mile when we explain things the way we’d like them to be explained to us,” said Spencer.
While some advantages exist, some predispositions stem from a lack of diversity in the industry.
“There is a large bias against youth. Everyone can agree there are mostly white older men in this industry – it’s no secret. Even in my hiring process, it was probably considered that I was young and a woman. Would people want to take a meeting with me? Would they want to listen to me?” Emily continued, “What I’ve found is that it really is to my advantage – my youth. I can relate to the upcoming inheritors of wealth; I can relate to young business owners coming into their own.”
There’s a future in this industry – there’s no question about it. There are endless opportunities for upward mobility and advancement, especially now. America’s largest generation, the baby boomers, will be retiring in the coming years. For financial services specifically, many partners are preparing to vacate firms. At the same time, firms will see an uptick in the number of high net worth clients seeking guidance. This gives way for the next generation, the up-and-coming financial professionals who are being prepared to take the reins from their successors.
“The industry is being disrupted right now. Many people in power are getting older. Their ideas are getting challenged. Having more women will change how the industry is received. There are still a lot of misconceptions in general. Having more women will help to change the dynamic. If you have more women at the top, it will encourage more women to want to start early,” said Emily.
“There are a lot of older advisors that are retiring and a lot of younger clients who want to take advantage of their financial future. This creates opportunity. I control my own destiny. If I work hard, I can earn more money and impact more lives,” added Spencer.
Why Choose Magnet?
Since the inception of the Magnet Program, a primary goal has been to work with our partners to create strategic solutions to industry problems. It’s evident that women in financial services want other like-minded women for support, partnership, and counsel. Magnet is providing women with the mentors and the network they need to be successful and have longevity.
“In Magnet we have a group of women advisors we meet with once a month, and we bring in others within the industry. We learn from them, and our goal in our group is not to be the best female but to be the best advisor. Magnet has created an atmosphere that females feel empowered as a group. We’re here together,” Jacalyn concluded.