Women Investing with TD
Did you know that women influence $1.3 trillion of Canadian investable assets? Or that women start 4 out of 5 new businesses? Women also represent nearly half of the Canadian workforce and earn the majority of undergraduate and graduate degrees in Canada.
Still, despite these facts, only 48% of solo women work with a financial advisor, compared with 61% of solo men; only 3 in 10 Canadian women have a financial plan, and 9 in 10 women will be left with sole responsibility for their finances at some point in their lives.
So what gives? Why is it that women — who have such a huge influence on the Canadian economy — are so hesitant to take control of their own finances?
Let’s first consider some of the myths for reasons why women participate less:
- I don’t have enough time to build and monitor a financial plan
- I don’t know enough about investing to have a financial plan
- I don’t have enough money to warrant the attention of a financial advisor
- I tried meeting with an advisor before, and I didn’t feel like my personal needs and preferences were met
Now let’s take a look at what women really want, as discovered by TD bank:
- A holistic approach
- Empowerment through education
- Proactive outreach
- To talk about goals
- Options to choose from
- Time and patience
Recognizing the change that was needed to cater to women and their finances, TD listened to what women wanted and has delivered with their “Your Story, Your Future” program. The tailored workshops will take place across the country to help empower women to feel comfortable, confident and open to investing and financial planning.
TD asked me to join one of their Toronto workshops alongside other influential women in the city a couple of weeks ago. ‘Inspiring‘ is one of the best ways I can describe the evening.
In my own experience, I have, over the past six months, contemplated sitting down with a financial planner. It all started when I bought my first home in the fall. Even after reaching out over email and the reassurance that there was no fee involved for their advice, I backed away from booking an actual meeting. I felt nervous and vulnerable, it was intimidating to think about baring my financial soul to somebody. On top of it all, I wasn’t sure what I would get out of it.
In TD’s “Your Story, Your Future” workshop, lead by Vanessa Iarocci, the program director for TD’s women investor strategy, a sense of sisterhood quickly swept through the room as we each took turn s going around the table, introducing ourselves and our financial story. It was incredible to witness the change in the room, the closeness that was created, once each women revealed their personal story. For most of us, it was the first time we had taken part any kind of group conversation that revolved around our financial stories and goals.
TD then encouraged us to each think about our individual goals, and chart them from small to large, reflecting how much an investment the goal would require. Three of my major goals (small and large) included renovating, starting a family, and starting a full time business. We were then instructed to list the top two things that could prevent us from reaching our goals, and three actions we can take to start making our goals a reality.
Of course I didn’t leave the evening with a full fledged plan in place, but it was the first step in the right direction to taking responsibility for my life goals and dreams. I guess I hadn’t really given it enough thought before, but , clearly I believed all of those common myths. In turn, I can absolutely relate to what women really wanted in order to participate, financially. To be honestly, I think a lot of it is about feeling comfortable, open and safe.
So consider it, you could turn the next wine and cheese night with your girlfriends into one that will empower you to take control of your own finances. And don’t worry, the wine and cheese is still provided!
For more information on finding an advisor, or to join a workshop, please feel free to email Vanessa directly at Vanessa.firstname.lastname@example.org
Take control of your financial future! Girl power!
(please note that this post has been sponsored by TD)