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WIN is a forum for full-time MBA women from top business schools around the country and investment professionals from sponsoring firms to gather, network, hear perspectives on investment careers and related topics from industry representatives, learn from distinguished women and men in the industry; and showcase their stock-picking skills in front of judges from sponsoring firms and obtain feedback on their pitches.  More than 60 women MBA students from top business schools and 65 representatives from top-tier investment management firms are expected to attend.
J.P. Morgan runs a recruitment programme called Winning Women, which gives female students the opportunity to discover the different areas of investment banking and learn about internships and the roles open to graduates. I recently participated in a networking event for the Winning Women programme, where I shared my experiences with students, and they also had the chance to meet female leaders from the bank and ask them questions about their careers.
Women entrepreneurs continue to face significant disadvantages in business despite studies showing that their companies actually outperform all-male companies by 63%. Incredibly, female business owners receive only 3% of venture capital investments, significantly limiting the growth of their companies. Female founders of color receive a mere fraction of that amount. We at FUND Conference are determined to help change this.

After setting up this organization and being a profitable business which makes us sustainable we realized that we were still not changing some habits in these families. Yes, they had a steady income but if the kid said, "I want to drop out of school when I'm 12," the mother said okay, fine, you don't want to go to school? Don't go to school. Or they were having Coca-Cola for breakfast, not that I have anything against Coca-Cola, but if they're suffering from diabetes maybe it's better that they have oranges, that they have orange trees in the backyard.


Free tools designed for women. Fidelity.com/itstime was designed to provide insights and next steps around the life events that matter most to women, whether you're about to get married, changing careers or caring for aging parents. Available here are talks and workshops, articles, checklists, and other guidance targeted to help navigate financial challenges.
MS. CRONSTEDT: So, I, a year after participating in the program, sold my first business and simultaneously, I started a new one based on the knowledge and the tools that were given to me in the Global Ambassadors Program, which was a more successful company, just in short. Which was an online catering company that exists to this day, and that has--
While a nice portfolio of stocks is bliss, having financial independence is way bigger than picking the right stock, fund or financial advisor. It’s about living in a way that supports your financial goals, having the confidence and knowledge to grow your money (alone or with a well chosen financial advisor), and creating income streams using either your highest skills, your money, or both to fund the lifestyle you desire.
I shared this experience with other female colleagues in the office, who agreed that it was totally inappropriate and assured me I’d have their full support if I wanted to report this incident to my manager. My manager (who is a male) was also extremely supportive, reaffirming that this is not the kind of behavior we’d want to espouse with future managers and leaders of the firm. He escalated the situation to HR, who has noted this on this employee’s record. While I’m not sure if any further steps will be taken, I’m glad there was an open communication channel between me and my manager where my opinion was respected and handled with sensitivity. 
Investing money in the stock market is not a complicated process, but it requires making decisions. Will you buy funds, exchange traded funds or equities? If so, which ones — and in what proportion? And on which platform will you choose to hold your investments? These are the practical barriers, but bigger decisions are needed to guide these choices — namely, what am I saving for, and how can I do so in the most tax-efficient way?
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MS. SPELLINGS: Well, I think programs like this are a great place to start that are outside the government, outside formal networks, and I think obviously we need to take care of each other, to mentor each other, but not only to mentor each other, to sponsor each other, and that, you know, that distinction between, you know, being someone who is an advocate as a sponsor for that next generation of women. I think obviously higher levels of education, but we need to make sure that our women are paying attention to what the data tells us about where opportunity is. In this state, you know, STEM, whether it's the financial industry or the pharmaceutical industry, the biotech industry, those industries that are driving this state forward we want to make sure that our women and girls get part of that action and so that we're pursuing the disciplines that lead into those pathways.
That brings me to the final part that I believe is essential for young women like me to understand more about the industry, which is work experience. Unfortunately, I have not yet had the opportunity of working in the finance industry. However, it has always been my aspiration to do so, and I hope to craft my academic career to achieve this. Also, I plan on participating in KWHS’s next investment competition to gain some hands-on (although at the same time theoretical) experience and insights on the area. I am keen towards broadening my horizons and learning more about the asset management and finance industry; it truly does seem to be an amazing yet intriguing topic.
One senior manager once said to us that learning and using technology is the easy part; it’s dealing with people that’s complicated. To a great extent, your quality of work will speak for itself, but I’ve found that having a mentor is invaluable. I think we can easily become emotionally invested in tiny issues, and it helps to have someone to go to, who can help you put things in perspective and keep your eye on your goals. Also, never lose your sense of humor!

Once you meet all these requirements, you can open your own investment accounts. If you fit that bill, then check out our Investing 101 guide to get more details on how investing works. Then, head over to our checklist that will give you the steps to opening an investment account. And, if you know you’re ready, there’s no better place to start than our Start Investing Bootcamp. 
Studies going back decades reinforce a simple point: Men trade more often than women, and that hurts their investment returns over time. The seminal study on the topic, by University of California–Davis professors Brad Barber and Terrance Odean (the latter is now at UC-Berkeley), tracked the trading patterns and results of nearly 38,000 households, over a six-year period during the 1990s, for which they could identify the gender of the primary account holder. The finding: Men traded 45% more frequently than women and, as a result, earned an average of 0.94 percentage point per year less than women did. More-recent research has shown much the same pattern. For instance, Openfolio’s data show that in 2015, men traded an average of 7.4 times, while women traded an average of 5.1 times.
Top GWI Takeaway: “I’ve heard of the term junk bond before, but I couldn’t understand why anyone would invest in them. The word has such a negative connotation. I’ve learned that junk bonds are high-yield bonds. They have a high risk of default, but they have a high return and offer higher yields than bonds with higher credit ratings. And they can actually be valuable investments for some investors.”
Kiva Microfunds is a nonprofit organization and microloan tool allowing people to lend money to others in need around the world, starting at $25. It focuses on low-income entrepreneurs and students in over 80 countries, making it easy to seek out women and invest in their futures. The organization has a 97 percent loan repayment rate and a four-star rating from Charity Navigator. A higher-cost option is SheEO, a company that takes donations in the amount of $1,100 to support early women entrepreneurs and grow their businesses.
So, if you’re eager to make a major job or career change… you guessed it, make a plan. Consider making a list of pros and cons for taking the plunge. If everything in your life is pointing to making a major change, figure out what new goal makes the most sense for you. Take an inventory of your skills and experience, along with your interests and aspirations, and figure out which careers/industries you best align with. Do you have any friends or family who have jobs that sound potentially intriguing to you? If so, ask them more about it. Do your research—the Internet is a great source of information for researching new companies and careers.
MS. TURLINGTON BURNS: Well, my dad smoked. The whole family, everybody smoked. So, that was my first foray really in public health where I started to see that by sharing my story and by learning more and by, you know, using my voice that that felt really good. And it was really healing when I lost my dad. I also learned as a public health advocate for cessation and prevention of tobacco that women's bodies were much more vulnerable and susceptible to a lot of disease related to smoking and tobacco than men. And the first Surgeon General report on women was in the late '90s, which was also kind of shocking. So, that was a first foray, and I think as I became a mom it just felt like a natural progression I guess.
Bottom line, don't be something you're not. be firm, but not a real bitch who can't play well with others. Be nice, but don't be a pushover. Don't go into banking with self-doubts because you're a girl. Sure, there are definitely times where it will be awkward (guys who do just 'guy' things, talking about girls, etc) but it's best to just go with the flow in those instances.
Thankfully, things have changed — but not everyone has gotten the message. Today you can invest online, from the comfort of your home, and if you do meet with an advisor, you’re going to see that everyone is trying to make things more accessible, Katchen says. “People know that women control more money than men, and are often the financial decision makers in their household.”
Consider a male slugger who puts $1,000 each into two speculative stocks versus a female lead-off hitter who invests the same amount in two dividend-paying blue-chip stocks. The high-quality stocks each return 10% over the course of the year, leaving the female investor with $2,200. Meanwhile, the male investor hits a home run with one of his picks, which doubles, but strikes out with the other, which loses 90% of its value. His total after a year is $2,100.
MS. SPELLINGS: You know, I would certainly not want to say something un-PC about men, but my observation is that I think we are. I think that's why you see women show up to say, "Put me in coach," or "I'm going to lead an effort on maternal health. I'm going to run for the school board, I'm going to be the president of a university, or the mayor of Charlotte," or whatever it is. And I do think we're motivated by that, often at some sacrifice.
I'm not going to lie, this can be a tough field for women in the long run. You'll feel like you are being passed up on promotions or being let go because of your sex, and in some cases you may very well be correct. I've seen BBs discriminate against women, and personally know women who have settled sexual discrimination cases with BBs for substantial settlements. With that said, the workplace is far more inviting to women than it used to be. Obstacles will always exist no matter where you go, so if IB is really what you want then go for it.
Don’t give up if you get a no. Ask for non-money perks: flextime, a new title, pay reevaluation next quarter, or mentorship by or a project with a senior exec. They’re valuable in themselves, but they also get your boss in the habit of saying yes to you, and that will help you get that raise next time. Remember, this is a lifetime gap you’re working to close!
3. Create an investment plan. Once you have set your goals, you need to create a solid investment plan. First, determine how much money you have to invest, and start thinking about how to make your money work for you to achieve your financial goals. Rather than a set of rules, an investment plan provides guidelines that can help you organize and direct your energies. Financial plans should have continuity and a solid foundation, but at the same time be adaptable to changes that invariably happen in life. For more on financial planning, read Developing a Personal Financial Plan.
But anyway, so I think the first thing is we have to say that is our expectation. It's our expectation that, you know, nearly everybody, 70% of the jobs in this state damn near are going to require post-secondary education, not necessarily a baccalaureate degree, but at least two years of education with a credential after high school, an associate's degree, some kind of stackable credential, a skill. Certainly the jobs at this organization are, certainly the jobs that you all are creating as entrepreneurs and leaders require skill and knowledge.

Don't put your investments on long-term autopilot. One of women's strengths as investors is that they are less tempted to buy and sell in the short term, based on classic research by Brad M. Barber and Terrance Odean at the University of California-Berkeley. But at least once a year, you need to become an active investor, checking your asset allocation as you age and your needs change. That means changing your asset allocation when it's required, or hiring an investment advisor or an online investment platform to do it for you. "This was my own mistake in 2008. ... I didn't have cash, and I was fairly close to retirement," said Hounsell.

Looking back, I’d emphasize to never sell yourself short and believe in the value you can add to a client. I never thought my opinions and judgment as a 22-year-old would be valuable to a client (isn’t that what my bosses are for?), but this role elevates you to positions where you will be asked for your thoughts and asked to represent the firm in various client situations.
One senior manager once said to us that learning and using technology is the easy part; it’s dealing with people that’s complicated. To a great extent, your quality of work will speak for itself, but I’ve found that having a mentor is invaluable. I think we can easily become emotionally invested in tiny issues, and it helps to have someone to go to, who can help you put things in perspective and keep your eye on your goals. Also, never lose your sense of humor!
Networking isn't just about meeting people to get career help. It's also about meeting others that you can help. We always remember those who have gone out of their way to be helpful. Also, people move around and you never know where they will land. So make an impression that you are a 'go to' person who can be relied on for help, and you’ll find your kindness repaid in a million ways.

MS. SARR: We bring in money in terms of funding as the United Nations, but we expect private sector to play its role. We expect public sector to play its role. In Africa, right now we have two countries that are leading in terms of affirmative procurement. In Kenya for instance 30% of public spend is earmarked for women, youth, and people with disabilities. South Africa also has preferential treatment for women. So, it's those critical partnerships that will allow us to have that critical mass of women that are economically empowered. And as a UN we, especially when women, we have a good understanding of what we call the gender machinery. We play a role of honest broker and that's how we put it together. It's a, it's a holistic comprehensive approach to be able to have impact.
It is definitely doable. I am acquainted with one female at Barclays(some of you might know who I'm talking about) who has managed to wield a massive amount of influence over the company as an associate to where she is more or less a gatekeeper for MBA recruiting. She's very direct, very professional, and very people smart...and she didn't get to where she is by trying to by imitating someone else. She crafted and managed her own unique brand.
MS. SPELLINGS: And certainly as public policy leaders. So, I think the reason it's so important is because we're going nowhere fast if we leave this much human potential and talent on the table. We know the facts over and over and over. When you educate a woman you educate a family. When you spend a dollar on a woman 97 cents of it goes to her children and family and community, and on and on and on. So, it's a great business case and a great moral imperative I would say to do this work.
MS. NELSON: That's great. That's great. I want to just in the three or so minutes we have remaining just if each of you could tell me about either your personal experience with mentoring, why did it make an impact, not to get into a long story, but you know, what was the impact? Why is it valuable? Or if you'd rather, how do you find a mentor? What advice do you have for maybe people who are here today who are like I'd like a mentor?
Millennials’ perspective on their later years and how to get there hints at a possible redefining of retirement, according to the latest Merrill Edge® Report. Nearly half (41 percent) of the generation surveyed expects to retire when they hit a certain financial milestone or savings goal, whereas their older counterparts are focused on leaving the workforce when they hit a certain age or can no longer work due to health concerns.
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