October 25, 2019

A take on: Women & Money

Shweta Jain
Founder, Investography

A take on: Women & Money

How we deal with money is unique to each of us irrespective of our gender. Yet, we stereotype for ease and convenience; be it that women like to spend, women like to buy jewelry, men take risks and so on.

Are these stereotypes myths and we have now outgrown them? Do they hold a grain of truth to them? Or are these irrelevant now so should be dismissed completely? Or do these need to evolve too, like we have!

I think these need to evolve, I think women have come a long way, but these stereotypes haven’t. Women love investing, women love exploring, they are taking risks and have completely redefined what a woman is, thereby confusing many!

In my show- Women Talk Money with iwoomoney,  I talk to women from different spheres of life, different upbringings, different perspectives, different priorities and different expertise. They all have a unique perspective about money because of their experiences with money and this shapes their journey with their investments too.

I have been fortunate to learn about money and deal with it from the beginning of my career. But as I interacted with more and more women, I learnt that investing was usually left to the men in their lives and sometimes quite unwillingly; simply because they didn’t know. I read this in a book called Lean In and this has stayed with me- Men take up a job when they are maybe 60% ready for it, women won’t do it until they are 100% ready for something. And in investing, you can never be 100% ready or up to date and hence we sometimes stay away from investments. We don’t want to make mistakes.

  1. Challenges: The challenges and struggles that we face with money are way too real and impact our lives adversely if we don’t handle them correctly. Some of the women opened up and spoke about how either their husbands manage money and they are not aware at all or that they made some bad decisions in investing which haunt them a decade later too.
  2. Learnings: Each episode, we gave the guests one thing that they could work on, we also discussed about the things that matter to them. Sometimes, what they said surprised them as well. These conversations about money are very very important in families to set expectations, to set goals, to dream of a life together so that they are in sync.
  3. We are not alone: Making mistakes is fine, we aren’t perfect nor should we aspire to be. We should aspire to keep learning and getting better. When some of the women opened up about their struggles and mistakes, a lot of women felt that they are not alone! This by itself is so powerful. It means we can now start addressing the issues.
  4. Inspire others: What we don’t realise is that sometimes by sharing our struggles and experiences we inspire others too. Our guests send us messages to this day of the encouraging words that they receive from friends and family of having inspired them.
  5. Do, not just “Know”: “Knowing” is not an edge today. Information used to be an edge earlier when it was scarce or limited to a few. Today, knowing what is relevant to whom and when is more important and even more important is “Doing” what is right for you. The number of temptations around us distract us from what is actually important and hence someone who can tackle these becomes successful investors, thereby designing a life that they want.

I have learned from every single conversation and continue to do so.

I was not surprised to see how many young women actually defer investment decisions to their better halves.

So, whilst we are getting independent in other facets of life, we should focus on getting financially independent too, only then will we be truly independent.


One response to “A take on: Women & Money”

  1. Look at it this way. Almost 75% of women will outlive their spouses. So, at some time in their life, they HAVE to know about money. Much better to learn about it now when the spouse is alive rather than when the guy is no more and you are rather old to comprehend the confusing terms!!

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