Your Financial Wellness Checklist
Wednesday was Women’s Equal Pay Day — or the day that marks how far into the next year women must work to earn what men did in 2020 alone. Over the course of a 40-year career, that adds up to a loss of $407,760. For women of color, the loss is closer to $1 million.
Societal norms and systemic biases continue to hold women back financially. Consider Joanne Lipman’s research, which found that men are 4x more likely than women to ask for a raise—and when women do ask, we typically request 30% less than men do. While it’s not on women to close the gender pay gap, we can employ tools and tactics to advocate for ourselves and negotiate the salaries we deserve. Below are a few of our favorite takeaways from the Equality Lounge® in Commemoration of Equal Pay Day.
The pay gap impacts all women, but it disproportionately affects some more than others. Below, find Equal Pay Days by demographic, denoting what women are paid for every $1 earned by their white, non-Hispanic male counterparts:
- March 9, 2021 | Asian American & Pacific Islander Women | $0.85 *Figures for this community vary widely by ethnicity
- March 24, 2021 | All Women (average) | $0.82
- August 3, 2021 | Black Women | $0.63
- September 8, 2021 | Native American Women | $0.60
- October 21, 2021 | Latina Women | $0.55
HEARD INSIDE THE LOUNGE:
1) Take baby steps: Not sure how to begin taking control of your finances? One of the best ways to feel less overwhelmed is to make a concrete plan. Ask yourself what you know and what you don’t know; what you need and what you don’t need. Create a list of your current monthly expenses and identify the places where you can cut back. Once you’ve done that, you’ll be able to track your spending and stick to the essentials. Baby steps! | Watch the full discussion
2) Break the taboo: Take advantage of all the resources available to you — and that doesn’t necessarily mean hiring a financial advisor or career coach. Talk to your friends, even if it’s uncomfortable. While societal norms treat money as a taboo topic, a lack of assertiveness around all things finance can dramatically undermine a woman’s personal and professional stability. It’s time to not just break the taboo, but disrupt the cycle. | Watch the full discussion
3) Drip feed into an emergency fund: How can we begin to think about saving for the future when the future is more uncertain than ever? Most of us have been told to “save for a rainy day,” but what if we aren’t there yet? What if we don’t have emergency savings — and it’s pouring? Is it possible to build up savings without an umbrella? The answer is yes. Wherever you are, make sure that you know your ‘why’ so that you have something to work towards incrementally. | Watch the full discussion
4) Pay it forward: Where we spend our money matters. By directing money towards organizations committed to addressing issues that disproportionately affect women, we can strengthen our communities and our economy — while increasing our financial returns at the same time. | Watch the full discussion
5) Develop an investor mindset: Financial independence is not about how much money you have in the bank, but about making smart choices with whatever money you have. No matter where you are in your career, you have the power to invest in yourself, your future, and the world around you. Pro tip: the earlier you start, the better it works thanks to the magic of compounding. | Watch the full discussion