MS. SARR: Absolutely. I will talk about my own area of, my portfolio. So, I deal with economic empowerment for Western and Central Africa, and my role is to help our country offices develop the biggest programs that give more money to the women. Right now we're focusing on agriculture because as we look at all of these African countries we realize that agriculture is a driver of growth, and therefore if we want to empower economically the women we have to make sure that they are involved in agriculture, they are just used as labor.
Best Advice: “Start reading the news! Even if it’s just one article about finance. You can sign up for alerts on your phone when anything happens in the market. That way you can learn about different financial terminology. The most nerve-wracking part of this industry is speaking to professionals and not sounding dumb or ignorant about the topics. I read The Wall Street Journal, and you can also listen to Bloomberg while you’re walking to class, just so you can hear the terminology.”
Another difference is that men are more likely to say that outperforming the market is their top investment goal, whereas women tend to mention specific financial goals, such as buying a house or retiring at 60. Affluent women are more likely to seek financial advice and fewer direct their own investments compared with men, according to Cerulli, a research firm. But they seem to be less satisfied with the advice they are getting. A survey in 2016 by Econsult Solutions, a consultancy, found that 62% of women with significant assets under management would consider ditching their manager, compared with 44% of men. Anecdotally, millennial women who inherit wealth are prone to firing the advisers who came with it.
So why don't the women stick around? I don't have any research to back up my theories, but I think it's this: investment banks in general are not very nice places for women to work. It's a culture problem; male dominated, aggressive and not much fun. In my opinion, until the (largely male) leadership teams start to actively address their culture, the women will continue to leave in droves.
Some more interesting results have been released, in case you're interested in adding it to the list. A recently released PwC article highlights some of the issues women face in breaking into the financial services industry, the basic finding is while involving diverse groups improves business performance - so irrespective of an ethical case there is a business one - many women for instance, still find themselves sidelined with 60% saying financial services firms are not doing enough to encourage diversity.

Take on less risk. Women are more likely to have their savings allocated in a more age-based allocation of investments than their male counterparts. In fact, looking specifically at Fidelity retirement savings accounts over the last three years, the percentage of women allocated appropriately for their age has increased by approximately 40 percent. Furthermore, fewer women have their savings fully invested in equities than men (which could represent too much risk and not enough diversification); and women are more likely to invest in target date funds, ensuring they are well diversified.
To kick off FUND Conference in Chicago this Fall, it is our honor to host the second Women Investing in Women (WiW) event. This exclusive event will feature keynotes, fireside discussions, and panels that focus on advancing women-led companies and bridging the unacceptable gender gap in business. A working lunch will match attendees with the resources they need to grow their business. This is an opportunity to create powerful relationships and networks to generate deal-flow for women-owned companies and the investors, service providers and communities who support them.
This problem may also result from a reluctance to talk about money. Women talk about marriage, kids, college, politics, religion, shopping and sex, but money matters tend to be taboo. “Men have no trouble talking about money, but it’s the one thing that women are hesitant to discuss,” says Zaneilia Harris, a certified financial planner and author of the book Finance ’n Stilettos. “If you won’t initiate that conversation, you’re hurting yourself. Sharing stories about money is a great way to learn.”

As an analyst, I'm also part of an employee networking group called Junior Women Connect, which organises a range of networking and career events. Last year we organised an event called "Power Dressing 101", which consisted of an evening in an L.K. Bennett store hosted by a professional stylist who advised us on how to dress for work and the impact of our image on people's perceptions of us.


At this age, women are usually married and might even have children. They have the additional responsibility of caring for a family. Women must remain invested in Mutual Funds and should also hold Life Insurance policies. One Life Insurance policy for each earning member in the family is a must. It is also important to invest for your children’s future. Mutual Fund Systematic Investment Plans (SIP) are a good way to start. You can, of course, choose the Sukanya Samridhi Yojana, if you have a girl child. And you can choose to invest in real estate. However, it will be prudent to buy a home to live in before investing in real estate. Taking a joint Home Loan will give you higher eligibility. Some banks give concessional interest rates to women. Make use of this.
MS. KATZIFF: So, first and foremost, and we've covered this a lot, if you strengthen and support and enable women then what you're doing is strengthening communities and impacting positively the global economy. So, it all comes together, and you know, it's great because some of the efforts just have been great examples, even here the, you know, the last panel who talked about some of our efforts around, you know, Jill talked about the support we provide in via small business loans, our partnership with Tory Burch Foundation, which is providing affordable loans to women-owned businesses, our partnership with Vital Voices of course, and Cherie Blair Foundation, as well as again Jill and Josefina talked about the Supplier Diversity Program, which not only supports women but also supports businesses that are owned by minorities, individuals with disabilities, veterans, and the LGBT community. So, and we also, there's a whole host of things we do, but you know, another great example is we partner with the Institute for Economic Empowerment of Women and it's pieced through business training and mentoring program. And that is a program that helps and supports women entrepreneurs in Rwanda and Afghanistan to support and strengthen their businesses.
Janet Cowell’s words mean that the diversity of gender brings us different perspectives. The integration of a large number of women workforces can add fresh blood to the industry. In my opinion, women are conservative in the asset management industry and are not as venturous as men. This more cautionary mindset enables women professionals to manage great assets for the less risky funds, while male professionals may encourager bigger risks. A company without women is like a car without a brake, which will run into risks someday.

MS. TURLINGTON BURNS: I think we see all ages who are interested, and it might be—obviously, it's not just people who are thinking about motherhood or pregnant themselves. This is again it's an issue that really touches a lot of people. It might be because of their own parent. It might be because, you know, like my 13-year-old, right, it's not lost in me that, you know, at this age of her life it's kind of the perfect time to be learning about these issues, well before she is thinking about whether she wants to or doesn't want to become a mom one day. But now, as she's understanding her body, and is learning about the things that she wants to do and what she wants to be in life. Like, this is like a ripe time. It's a challenging time in almost every country to be able to educate our young people about these things, but it's so important. My team at work, their ages, you know, 22 to I'm 48, so to 48. I mean it's a pretty broad age range, and I think the way that we work as a team has really helped to—like we don't really see age and numbers. It's like we're together sharing this mission and we each can kind of reach our own networks in our own way, in the way that they want to be spoken to or taught. So, we're really trying to think about that and keep an open mind about how people want to, how receptive people are, and how they want to take information in and how they want to be activated.
MS. URZAIZ: That's right. We wanted to be better, and decided that a way to prove that we're doing above and beyond what is in our hands we decided to become Fair Trade Certified, and not only that B Corp, for those of you who know what B Corp is, which means we do above and beyond. We're not only committed with our suppliers, that is the weavers, but also with the environment and with the community as a whole giving back.
“It’s refreshing to see the mindset around retirement evolve, particularly a strong optimism and a goal-oriented approach from younger generations,” said Aron Levine, head of Merrill Edge at Bank of America. “This focus is a great start, but one of the keys to a successful retirement is to ensure savings are prioritized early and often. Year over year, we continue to see today’s non-retirees struggle with the impact short-term spending has on their long-term financial future.”
The first thing I want to make clear is that women really are missing out right now. Investing is a huge wealth generator, and women, for one reason or another, tend to do it less. Seventy-one percent of the money women have is in cash, and any financial advisor will tell you, cash not only doesn’t earn a return; it actually depreciates over time thanks to inflation. The stock market, on the other hand, has returned an average of 9.5 percent for the past ninety years, even including the horrific downturn in 2007. The good news is a lot of companies are trying to figure out how to change that. Partly because it’s the right thing to do, partly because it’s good business.
Money Motivation: “I had always thought about finance before this program with not such a positive lens. There are a lot of people who are focused on the money. That was one reason why I was intimidated by getting into finance to begin with. A lot of times those people can be very loud and overwhelming. It can give a negative perception of the industry. The people at Princeton pursuing finance are very intense. I was meeting kids who had been on a finance track for years and I wasn’t. I now realize that was a very skewed perspective of the industry. A lot of the asset managers and portfolio managers that we’ve met in this program came from a liberal arts background.”
MS. SPELLINGS: I think if there's, if there's an age difference it's often the younger, the mentee helps keep the mentor real and relevant and current, which is a huge gift for those troglodytes in the audience. And I think it helps challenge your assumptions often. It allows you, as Christy mentioned, to continue to challenge yourself about the why, that you're not just so engrained in your initial vision that you forget to step back. We used to say in one of the programs I was involved in are you working in your business or on your business? And I think it lets the mentor work on your business and not in your business.
Many companies in the financial sector are also guilty of perpetuating a male focus, Mr Tsivrikos adds. “The language and visual aspects of investing are still very male-dominated – even things such as bank notes, which have more images of men on them. The more we have female figures on money and as visual components in the world of finance, the more they will be engaged.
Define your goals: Get to the heart of what's important to you by thinking critically about investment goals. Sabbia mentioned preparing for personal retirement, saving for children's educational needs, or leaving a charitable gift for the next generation as potential goals. She also mentioned a key difference in how women invest. "While women care about performance, they also look for their investments to align with their values, goals and priorities," Sabbia said. "In fact, more than half of women investors are interested in or engaged in impact investing, generating financial returns along with social returns." Sabbia mentions that whether it's for your own family or a meaningful cause to help others, having clear goals that link to a clear strategy is key to success. And the ripple effect from that empowerment could extend far beyond your own backyard. Increased participation in investing could benefit communities overall. "If more women can actively take control of their financial future all along the way, it would not only benefit them, but also their families and our society overall,” said Maddy Dychtwald, co-founder and senior vice president of Age Wave.

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. 


The solution for this problem is exactly what you said, Diane: “Women need to see themselves in these roles, know they can develop the necessary skills…” and it applies not just to finances but to sciences in general. But, fortunately, brave girls navigated in this not-known sea, breaking into it and them showing the way to the others. Here in Brazil there is a community called Meninas Olimpicas (Olympic Girls) which tries to correct this boys majority in the Scientific Olympiads by incentivizing girls to participate “head on” of them. In order of accomplishing this mission, they post depositions of girls who achieved great success in these competitions.


Take on less risk. Women are more likely to have their savings allocated in a more age-based allocation of investments than their male counterparts. In fact, looking specifically at Fidelity retirement savings accounts over the last three years, the percentage of women allocated appropriately for their age has increased by approximately 40 percent. Furthermore, fewer women have their savings fully invested in equities than men (which could represent too much risk and not enough diversification); and women are more likely to invest in target date funds, ensuring they are well diversified.

In fact, looking at actual data is one of the best ways to counteract the fear of investing. For example, are you afraid to invest in stocks because you remember the painful declines of the financial crisis? Well, in spite of the 36.55 percent plunge in the S&P 500 stock market index in 2008, this index gained an average of 7.25 percent annually between 2006 and 2015.
My days are pretty unpredictable—unless I’ve got early morning calls or meetings or a ton of work to do urgently, I’ll usually get into work around 10am and could leave anywhere between 8pm to past midnight. There have been several times where I’ve woken up to tons of emails that need to be addressed immediately, so I’ll log in from home and keep working until I get to a stopping point where I can transition to the office. Best parts of my day are when the client acknowledges how helpful our work has been. Worst parts would be the really late nights and days when you’re just stretched way too thin across multiple teams.

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.


I'd have to agree with the above post. Don't act like a man. You're not , and it just looks weird. But that being said if you're super nice then you'd probably get taken advantage of, so for example, in an interview setting just be yourself. If you are super nice then you probably don't fit in the typical banking environment. After all, you don't want to land a job on the notion of you being someone completely different than you are. You will eventually get tired and want to quit becuase you can't stand to act like someone you're not. 

Some more interesting results have been released, in case you're interested in adding it to the list. A recently released PwC article highlights some of the issues women face in breaking into the financial services industry, the basic finding is while involving diverse groups improves business performance - so irrespective of an ethical case there is a business one - many women for instance, still find themselves sidelined with 60% saying financial services firms are not doing enough to encourage diversity.

But do women invest in the same way as men? There is little recent data. However, historical surveys have shown that men are generally more cavalier about risk than their female counterparts. A University of California study called Boys Will Be Boys: Gender, Overconfidence and Common Stock Investment found in 2001 that women outperformed men in the market by one percentage point a year because, they said, men were much more likely to be overconfident and make rash decisions that cost them money.
Girls Who Invest wants to fundamentally transform the finance-industry landscape. “A lot of young women who are [college] freshmen have no idea that the asset management industry exists,” said Janet Cowell, CEO of Girls Who Invest and a recent speaker at the Wharton Global Forum in New York City. Cowell joined the Knowledge@Wharton radio show, which airs on Wharton Business Radio on SiriusXM, to discuss why it’s important to get more women and minorities involved in finance. “People have vague notions of banking, but they don’t really know what that means. So, it’s exposing them to the industry and the opportunities, and dispelling some of the myths about the finance industry or at least giving them a more holistic perspective. It’s not all the Wolves of Wall Street or some of these movies they’ve seen. And it’s not all about greed. Finance can be about social impact. As they start learning that, we have young women who have the quantitative skills and interest, and we train them.”
Everyone’s relationship with money varies, but LearnVest is here to make sure it’s a good and healthy one. Their sole mission? To help you feel amazing about money. All users have access to a free and personalized money center, where they can create and prioritize their financial goals, link their accounts and also determine their net worth. They also have a must reads tab where users can get more content on all things finance, career and lifestyle.
To kick off FUND Conference in Chicago this Fall, it is our honor to host the second Women Investing in Women (WiW) event. This exclusive event will feature keynotes, fireside discussions, and panels that focus on advancing women-led companies and bridging the unacceptable gender gap in business. A working lunch will match attendees with the resources they need to grow their business. This is an opportunity to create powerful relationships and networks to generate deal-flow for women-owned companies and the investors, service providers and communities who support them. 

It’s called impact investing, and it is designed to deliver competitive investment returns — while also working to effect positive social and economic change. Our Ellevest Impact Portfolios are designed to do this by advancing women; it is our view that what is good for women is good for the economy and society… and what’s good for the economy and society is good for women, too.
MS. TURLINGTON BURNS: So many audiences that I speak to are thinking about the same, if they're moms they're like, "How do I get my kids to understand how the world works and to understand some of these issues that we're grappling with?" And I think like I said earlier just to be exposed to the world in as many communities and different types of people and cultures the better, as early as possible. So, we were doing some trips to visit grantee partners in the field and it makes a huge impact for anyone who has not traveled, but anyone to go and have that firsthand experience to meet people and to learn, you know, really at the frontlines what's going on, but to have your child with you is also extraordinary. So, last year we led our first mother-child trip, and I'll say mother-child because it was supposed to be mother-daughter but there was one brave 12-year-old boy who came with his mother. And this year we have another group going down to Guatemala again, mostly 16 and 17-year-old girls, but there will be another brave 14-year-old young man whose mother is an obstetrician who has come with us on a few different trips. So, he's probably going to be a little bit more informed than the average 14-year-old. 

6. Impact of higher savings is calculated using fixed monthly returns with contributions made at the beginning of the period. Beginning balances are assumed to be zero. The potential difference is calculated by comparing ending balances at retirement for each hypothetical example. The ending values do not reflect taxes, fees or inflation. If they did, amounts would be lower. Earnings and pre-tax contributions are subject to taxes when withdrawn. Distributions before age 59 1/2 may also be subject to a 10% penalty. Contribution amounts are subject to IRS and Plan limits. Systematic investing does not ensure a profit or guarantee against a loss in a declining market. This example is for illustrative purposes only and does not represent the performance of any security. Consider your current and anticipated investment horizon when making an investment decision, as the illustration may not reflect this. The assumed rate of return used in this example is not guaranteed. Investments that have potential for the assumed annual rate of return also come with risk of loss.
But many still hesitate to reach out for help. Women across all generations are less likely to reach out to an adviser than men, with six out of 10 saying they have never consulted with a financial professional. Among this group, the top reason why was feeling like they didn't have enough money. Other barriers holding women back from addressing their finances: not knowing where to start and simply not making it a priority11.
This is really important. The investment gap and the pay gap are closely related. A lot of us know about the pay gap—that women make about eighty cents on the dollar compared to men with the same job and experience. And investing amplifies that difference, thanks to what Albert Einstein once called the eighth wonder of the world: compounding. Which means that, over time, the difference between investing a little and investing a little more becomes profound. Basically, if you don’t invest much, and you don’t start early enough, you’ll end up with a lot less when it’s time to retire. Once you stop working, your retirement savings becomes your income. And more income means more choices: the choice to take time off for family, change jobs for something you love but that may not pay as well, leave a bad relationship, travel the world…money equals choices.
The Northwestern MutualVoice Team is a group of professionals who share insights and opinions from experts and industry leaders across the enterprise. Our vision is to inspire others to take action and plan for their financial future through topics ranging from financial planning, retirement planning and distribution strategies, wealth accumulation and preservation, to leadership, philanthropy and innovation.
You also need to work harder sometimes in order to get recognition or get same bonuses. It might also be harder for you to find a mentor at workplace, but again you could solve those problems by working hard, finding mentors outside of workplace or developing mentorships slowly at work through developing your own brand and consistently proving that you are reliable.
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