It would be hard to close out the month of March without talking about Women's History month, and some of the topics from a financial standpoint that are really hitting women hard.
And especially three topics consisting of how women invest, equal pay, and lastly, the impact of caregiving, especially on women and financially.
So we're going to dive into those three topics today as we celebrate Women's History Month.
So if you know anyone who could benefit from having knowledge around these areas, please share this podcast.
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Securities offered through LPL Financial, a member of FINRA/SIPC. Advisory services offered through Advisors' Pride, a SEC registered investment advisor. LPL Financial, Advisors' Pride, Forethought Planning and the guests of Thrive For[e]ward podcast are separate and unaffiliated parties. The views expressed here are those of the participants, and not those of Forethought Planning, Advisor's Pride, or LPL financial. The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. LPL Financial and Forethought Planning do not offer legal services.
Shannon Foreman 0:01
Hello friends, and welcome to this episode of The Thrive Forward podcast. To be honest, it'd be hard to close out the month of March without talking about women's history month, and some of the topics from a financial standpoint that are really hitting women hard, especially at this claim. And three different topics that I want to be able to touch on today are how women invest, and how that's changing the landscape right now. Equal pay, which is a big conversation. And not only just equal pay for women, but the discrepancies between that and the impacts of wealth over time, and especially the discrepancies between different types of women based on race, as well. And lastly, the impact of caregiving, especially on women and financially. So we're gonna dive into those three topics today as we celebrate Women's History Month. So if you know anyone who could benefit from having some conversation or knowledge around these areas, please share this podcast. As always, we love when you share our content. This is our way of offering free education and an introduction to the work that we do at forethought planning. Now, let's get to the good stuff. Alright, friends, so as I mentioned, we're going to break down three different topics when it comes to what women are dealing with, from a financial standpoint right now. And now that list might feel very long, because we as women have broad shoulders and carry lots of responsibilities in our families in our lives, in our workplaces, in our community. And oftentimes, we are told that we, if we excel in those areas, we must must have an S on our chest or a cape on our back. And the reality is, sometimes just all of the responsibility that we have gets tiring, I get the honor of sitting with 50 plus women on a regular basis as a part of our wealth circles to educate and empower women around wealth. And a lot of times I hear from this group of women just how tired they are how educating themselves on one more topic just feels like a lot. The reality is money does touch every aspect of our lives. And so if we don't deal with this piece, it might mean that other aspects or other roles or responsibilities that we have in our life, become much more difficult. So the first topic that I wanted to touch on was the pay gap. You see, this is a big conversation, especially around women's history month. And International Women's Day, International Women's Day wasn't just designed to celebrate the wonderful achievements of badass women. But to bring about the conversation on how do we have an element in the workplace that allows for equal pay for the same amount of job, what a white male counterpart or a male counterpart receives for their pay for doing the same job a woman would do? See, I've actually sat in that seat before and found out that my male counterparts make more money than me or had negotiated more money than me. And I maybe didn't feel like I had the space or the opportunity to do that. Yes, even me, who is sitting here before you talking to you about this topic. Now, I'm not in that space anymore. And let me just tell you, I will advocate all day long, not only for myself, but for other women, my clients and people that I know, to make sure that we are being paid what we are worth for the amount of work that we do. That being said, I want to talk about some of the long term impacts that if we don't adjust, and we don't fight for and we don't negotiate, we don't raise these issues, to have solutions, right? It's not just about raising the issue. It's what can we do to make action and actually make change, right? We don't want to just make noise. We want to make noise that has results afterwards and solutions
Shannon Foreman 4:07
I don't ever want my daughters who are seven and eight staff to have these conversations. The likelihood of that maybe happening in their lifetime might be there if we don't continue to have these types of conversations. But according to a Forbes article, they are then went into in depth conversation. We'll include this in the show notes for you so you can go back and read the full article yourselves. But those experiencing pay discrimination lose hundreds of 1000s of dollars over the lifetime in comparison to male white white male counterparts. One study showed that women lost $406,280 a white woman lost $555,360 and a black woman lost $964,400 in there working lifetime. So these are wages, that if we were to be able to make the same amount of money, that we're missing out on being paid. I don't know about you. But going into the pandemic, we saw so many other women having to leave the workforce to take care of loved ones, whether that be their children, whether that be their parents, their grandparents, aunts, and uncles, because so many individuals during our season in the pandemic, which seems to just be Ever Living, have strong responsibilities, which is why we'll touch on the caregiving aspect of things as well. When we talk about the wage gap and what women are dealing with when it comes to a financial standpoint, that is a lot of money. For a white woman, that is half a million dollars. For a black woman that is almost double the fact that we are not an age, and a time where we can all show up to the same job with the same level of experience and get paid the same is unfortunate. However, how do we create change? And how do we spark these conversations so that we don't end up in that space? Well, I like to say that some of our younger counterparts walking into the workforce, I've definitely challenged us Gen Z, millennials, coming to the table and having the conversations, more transparency about MIT what we make, instead of talking about all the time, especially for women, what we spend, hey, yes, oh, that's a cute shirt. I know, I got it on sale, oh, I got it for 20 bucks at Target or whatever, right? We talk about what we spend. But oh, you know what I was able to save this amount of money, which allowed me to be able to spend this amount of money, because I'm getting paid XYZ. You see, most men actually don't have a problem talking about how much they make. Somewhere along the lines, women were told that finances are something to remain private remain things that we don't share. If we don't have transparency around what we make, or what somebody else makes, for even our male counterparts have the transparency around what they make, so that we can have a better understanding going to the negotiation table. That leads me to the negotiation table,
Shannon Foreman 7:30
when you are applying for a job when you're getting your annual review. When you have noticed how much work you have put in throughout the pandemic throughout a certain projects you might be working on? Why are you not advocating for yourself, you know the work that you've done, you've seen the other people that you work with? Do your research, I answered on on money on your mind episode and gave very specific things that you can do in creating that. Okay, here's the number I'm going to come to the table with, and I'm going to ask for it. You can go do market research, you can ask your HR directors or HR personnel to give you the salary range for a certain pay grade so that you understand within your pay grade, is this a salary that's available to you? Is this a bonus structure that's available to you? If you're negotiating as a business owner and a contractor? Well, my friend you have even more capability to ask, the reality is sometimes we just are afraid to ask. And that is sometimes that leads us to not being able to get to the money that we need and offer in some of those gaps. Of course, we have to advocate for ourselves right now. That's a place that we are at, we also have to advocate for others. So other women in leadership men in leadership, we need to understand we're at that table offering a new job, what does the rest of our teammates? Are we making sure that we are in line with offering for the same type of work experience the same type of work ethic, the same type of dedication that these individuals have? I think getting paid the same amount of money, being able to evaluate that on a regular basis and as a leader advocating for their people to make sure that you are paying everyone the same wage for the same amount of work that they are doing in that same Forbes article that I was telling you about earlier that will leave in the show notes. Studies show that actually women leave money on the table because we don't ask, in fact, most on average are asking for 6% less than what their male counterparts are. So it's our ability to be able to step into our own knowing and our own research by asking By looking around, and by allowing for that transparency when we're the in the leadership role to be able to move this needle forward, so that we might have financial freedom so that we might be able to save more for retirement, so that we won't have those big, half a million $2 million gaps. You see, as we sit in leadership roles, we also need to make sure that we're advocating, it's not just the person that's showing up to that job interview or that negotiation, it comes from both sides of the proverbial table, that we need to be advocating and creating this type of change. I don't want you or anyone else that I know or don't know, to be having that much of a gap in their financial lives, because you didn't ask. So don't leave money on the table, because you're afraid to ask. And if you need to practice that conversation, lean on one of your friends, have that conversation with your financial planner, about what is it that you need to ask for? And how do you weave that into that conversation, but let's not leave money on the table, my friends, ladies, you are so capable, you are so worthy of asking for that raise. And if we want to close this pay gap, we got to take it into our own hands and take the bull by the horns and say we deserve this money. Now, let's start the conversation in kind of a different direction. As I mentioned in this pay conversation, so much change with pandemic and so many women had to leave the workforce to take care of others, the caregiving element in the United States that rests on the shoulders of women is heavy. I can say that, with a little bit of
Shannon Foreman 11:53
tears in the back of my eyes, because I have had to live this over the last month. In fact, March has not been a very easy month for me, I have been taking care of my 94 year old grandma getting her set up with assisted living, figuring out the financial aspects of things, and having to juggle that, while running a company and raising children and my other caregiving responsibilities of taking care of my parents, and my father who has Alzheimer's. So my friends, I feel you if your shoulders feel heavy, if this was a responsibility that you had to walk in, the reality is maybe you didn't experience that in the pandemic. But your reality will come to you, at some point, you will either be the person that needs care are the person that is providing care, and that my friends more than fluctuations in the market can affect us financially. We talked about the pay gaps that happen for women over a lifespan of money left on the table. Now you add the element of having to care for others, maybe having to leave the workforce early than having to re enter it at a later date, or having to financially provide for your loved ones so that they may receive the care that they deserve to have, according to a study on caregiver.com That again, will leave in the show notes for you to be able to digest 66% of caregivers are women. And that was as of 2015. So I can only anticipate in the last seven years that that number has increased, especially as we have an aging population with our baby boomers now entering a different space in a different capacity. As we see the increases of diseases like Alzheimer's, and dementia and cancer and all of the things that require a loved one to have, sometimes around the clock care that becomes ever loving, a burden for 66% of the caregivers being women. That means so many of us will be affected by this. And if we leave this conversation off the table of either planning for how we will be taking care of or how we will take care of our partner, our parents, our grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters, all of the people in our life at some point in time might need this. And if we don't have that conversation, if we don't have transparency around that, we will end up being a rat race of trying to figure things out. I I love my parents, I love my family. I will do absolutely anything for them. But this topic around caregiving long term care, assisted living being able to understand all the costs and everything that are associated with that are foreign, and in fact sitting in these conversations over the last couple of weeks. Someone who understands this very indefinitely from a professional standpoint, still sometimes feels intimidating, it feels confusing. And sometimes like I am interrupting a complete conversation in a foreign language that I do not understand. The reality is, these conversations should not happen when the person needs care. There are a few things that you want to consider in, in having these conversations to start with. If you are an individual that might have to care for somebody down the road, I would hate for you to have to take a step back in your career, because that can also mean that you take a step back and make that gap even more when it comes to a wealth standpoint. Yes, of course, we want to care for the people around us. But that's why some of these conversations need to be more proactive, I would say even five to 10 years before that individual might actually need care. If you have a parent or a loved one who is nearing retirement and starting to have those conversations, help them understand what they want your role to be, what is it that they want you to do? And that's a simple question of at the point in time where you might need care. Maybe this is your parents or grandparents you're talking to? How would you like me to play a role in that?
Shannon Foreman 16:23
I want to better understand what that means for you. We did a whole podcast episode specifically on having conversations around this exact topic. But if we leave it to the backburner, this might also mean that we have to pay because the reality is many facilities cost a lot of money. And just being able to explore memory care for my father, the average cost in the state of Minnesota was somewhere between six and $10,000. Not to mention, my dad is on elder wafer, which means he had to spend down assets to get to the place where he could qualify, he owns nothing, he owns no house, no car, those that are titled in my mother's name, he doesn't have anything. And that being said, is still responsible for paying some element, he doesn't have a lot of social security. And being able to produce the amount of income to cover the cost of memory care for my dad could be crippling. However, if I want to be able to utilize something for him, he might have to have a roommate. In his 70s have a roommate that is not my mother, and someone who's battling dementia or Alzheimer's. These are why conversations need to be had earlier earlier. If you are somebody that you could anticipate potentially needing care down the road, let's say you are retired or after retirement, and you maybe want to keep close to the vest what that conversation of financial aspects looks like with your kids. That's fine. The reality is you don't need to share all of your finances with your children. But if you aren't having a conversation with them about how prepared you are, for these types of scenarios, that's not very fair to them either. They're not going to be able to enjoy the relationship that they might have with you down the road. So secrecy and transparency are two different things. You can keep your private financial life but having transparency around where you're at, and what your expectations are in the area of caregiving is something that is very important. I wouldn't leave that off the table, after all the loved ones that might care for you down the road or those that you've raised, and you have wanted to let them spread their wings and have the lives of their own, you wouldn't want them to take a step back, to not be able to earn the same amount of money, or to have to start over again, or borrow from their own retirement to be able to provide for you. Of course, many of those individuals would do all of those things for you. But how do you want them to play a role for you?
Shannon Foreman 19:20
So I encourage you to have these types of conversations. These will impact women more and more than men. And if you are a married individual well, and if you're blessed with two sets of parents, those two are those are two conversations that you need to be able to have with your loved ones. Because although it might be your parents that are totally prepared are your partner's parents totally prepared by the other people in your lives prepared. I especially urge those individuals who are products of only children. I am an only child and there was much responsibility that has come to me in the last Several years since my dad was diagnosed, but even in the last several months, as my grandmother has needed more help, and the only child, I'm the only grandchild communication is absolutely necessary to be able to understand where individuals are at, and how you can plan better. If you are not yet retired, and maybe you'll be that person that is caring for someone else, don't ignore this topic, either for yourself, there are lots of financial ways that you can mitigate, and at least lessen the blow of a long term care event and the financial aspects that it could, you know, potentially hinder you. I've said this before, but long term care can have a greater financial impact, in a not so positive way than market fluctuations can over time, the cost of care is increasing at a horribly fast rate. And it's something that as a country, we should definitely be having more conversations about. And it's not a by it's not a partisan issue. It's something that affects all of us. But that being said, you should be able to have this conversation on your own as well start looking into ways that you can start saving, or even mitigating that type of risk by using some sort of insurance policy. And if you don't know how to do that, I strongly encourage you to first meet with a financial planner before you meet with an insurance individual so that you can understand what options are out there and how it impacts your total picture. Remember, as I've talked about before, your personal board of directors needs to be working together. And oftentimes, there are plenty of financial planners out there like myself, who specialize also in insurance planning. So make sure that you're not just working with someone that only sees one part, and potentially could just be selling you a product versus someone who sees the whole picture, and is helping you to create a strong roadmap for yourself. Lots of times, individuals will not qualify for insurance types of products, once you get closer to the time that you need it. So looking into your 60s and 70s. Although it might not be too late, it can be more costly and more expensive, the older you get. So don't wait for this conversation. Until you're getting closer to that time. This is a conversation you should have at the earliest possible time that you can. I could talk about caregiving, and planning for that for the entirety of an entire podcast. In fact, I think I have on several of them before. But that being said, let's make sure that we talk about our last topic here, which is going to be around investing for women. I've been in this industry for many, many years. And so I've seen trends and and pieces of how things happen in the industry change and evolve. And there is nothing that has made my heart warm more than seeing the change of women really getting brave, courageous and curious about investing. So much of what happens for women is around this nurturing aspect that we have. We love safety and security, at least most of us do. And most of us want to know that we're going to be able to add the drop of a hat be able to provide for the people that are around us, which has also swayed women from taking that extra step or understanding what risk appetite they might have to invest. The reality is once women invest, they are actually smarter investors than most men. Because we're less likely to make most emotional decisions. Although we get a bad rap for being emotional creatures when it comes to investing. We actually are the type of people that can do things on an on an emotional basis and see the end game that we're not trying to always have the hottest thing since sliced bread or the best trending topic out there. In fact, we're just trying to make it to a goal that we have. That being said, according to a Forbes another Forbes article that we will use. In our show notes. The gender gap in investing is started to narrow 760 7% of women are now investing money beyond their retirement so most women have been saving into their retirement. But there are other vehicles that you could be investing in outside of retirement. That's a 44% increase since 2018. Which just makes me beam beam with PRI that doesn't mean that we don't have more work to do. Because women have longevity longer than men. Women have the tendency to lose Longer, women also have the responsibility of being caregivers. That means that keeping up with inflation and making sure that we are saving to be able to not have our money run out before us, but have us run out before our money is something that's important. And if we just keep saving in a savings account at a bank, which I'm sure if you visit your bank, no knock on them, but they sure as heck are not paying you much in interest. In fact, most of the time, I joke that it's just lint, pocket lint, they're actually paying us. The reality is we need to be able to keep pace with inflation. And most of the time, we won't be able to do that if unless we put some level of risk on the table. That means that investing doesn't have to be a roller coaster ride, and investing come very personal to you and designed specifically to you. That is also why financial planning is so important in all of the topics we've talked about today from the pay gap to caregiving to now also investing for women, it will show you what risk can you take, how comfortable can you be in order to get to the goals that are important to you. So as you think about all of the responsibilities that you have, investing can be a calm, Plex beast to attack. That being said, it's a personal conversation. And most women say that they will invest more, if they work with someone, there is nothing wrong with learning and growing. Just be careful that when you are hiring a professional that that professional understands your personal values, what's important to you is going to do financial planning is going to disclose fees, works in a fiduciary capacity and has experience within the industry or works with an experienced team. It is important that people understand the ramifications of different types of investment vehicles, understand the fees that are associated them with them are they front end back end pay as you go, is it a flat rate fee a percentage, because so much can happen within our industry
Shannon Foreman 27:12
that is complex. So please do not be afraid to ask those questions. But don't have your money sit on the sidelines, it isn't going to keep you going through the test of time, and outlast and be able to spend the same where you are now and where you are in the future. So please take the opportunity to educate yourself. So in kind of putting a bow around our conversations today, I want to encourage our female listeners and those that identify as female today to be proactive and ask do your research and understand what your pay gap is. And who else and what else are they making? And how can you get to that point. And don't be afraid to say exactly what it is that you need. And offer that ask. The worst that someone can say is no. And then you know what else is out there and you can start the interview process to look for something that will honor you and pay you what you deserve. Have the transparent conversation with the people in your lives that you care for, have a good understanding of what your responsibilities are and how you can best serve them and their wishes. Have a good idea of what your responsibilities might be. Whether that be legal, whether that be financial, whether that be managing the health aspect of things, there are lots of different roles that you might play, and making sure that you're also planning not only for those individuals that you'll care for, but also for yourself in the future. Since women live so much longer than our male counterparts. It is important that we start having those conversations sooner rather than later. And don't sit on the sidelines. Take this opportunity to educate yourself from a financial standpoint about investing so that you aren't missing out on returns that can potentially be there to help your wealth grow. Of course investing is something very personal and has risk associated with it. So please make sure that you are asking questions. But ultimately, my dear friends, I want you to understand that you are worthy of well. The views expressed here are those of the participants and not those of forethought planning advisors pide or LPL. Financial all investing involves risk including loss of principal no strategy assures success or protects against loss securities are offered through LPL Financial and member of FINRA and SIPC advisory services offered through advisors pride and SEC registered investment advisor LPL Financial Advisors pride forethought planning and the guests of the Thrive Forward podcast are separate and unaffiliated parties
Transcribed by https://otter.ai