In part Part I we broke down the gender norms and in Part II we discuss the gender gaps, both of which make it difficult for women to get ahead financially. However, in the third and final installment, we examine the many positive outcomes when women have money and what you can do to change the narrative.
Good things happen when women have money
Okay, now that you’ve been shocked to your core by all the inequities at play, let’s bring it home with some positivity. Here’s the thing – women – we’re not going anywhere! At some point or another we’ll end up solely responsible for our finances – we typically live 8% longer than men. Financial freedom is a form of personal empowerment. So, why not start early? It’s been noted that with each generation, young women are becoming increasingly excited to learn about investing, negotiating a pay rise, and starting a business. That’s great because with more money in women’s hands there are studies that show the WORLD would be a better place.
- Women are better investors. When women invest, their portfolios outperform men’s by 4%. And we invest more thoughtfully – there would be more money going to protect against climate change and more money going to non-profits.
- Women run better businesses. Studies show that start-ups with at least one woman founder perform better. Also, in times of crisis, women-led companies have tended to weather the storm better. More women-run businesses, mean more diversity, and with more diversity comes greater profitability, less risk, and more innovation.
- Positive Power. Women are 84% more effective in core leadership competencies than men. There would likely be fewer attacks on women’s rights and a greater focus on preventative care and wellness with more women in leadership. Studies also show, not just less war-on-women, but also less war.
Here’s what you can do
I am trying to resist the urge to wrap this up with too pretty a bow because there is sadly much to do. But if you feel the same sense of urgency I do – below are just a few suggestions I found on Ellevest, an incredible women-run resource.
- Fight for your next raise or promotion. You deserve more.
- Apply for that business loan. Firms run by women that receive a loan in their first year tend to outperform those run by men.
- Start investing. Today.
- Use your financial power. Spend intentionally. Buy from women-led businesses. Invest in women entrepreneurs. Avoid banking with institutions involved in predatory lending practices.
- Follow (and participate in) local politics. When the federal government fails to implement safety nets, it’s on state, county, and city-level legislators.
- Raise kids to use the money for good. Talk about money with your children (and in front of them), address negative stereotypes, choose women (while shopping, as healthcare providers, etc.), and model equity at home.