According to U.S. Census Bureau estimates for July 2019, women make up 50.8 percent of the population. Approximately 19% of financial advisors in the United States are female. As financial female professionals struggle with gender inequality and the ongoing pay gap, this number continues to decline. Why is this of concern?
According to a survey by Insured Retirement Institute, 70 percent of women of any age indicate they would rather work with a female financial advisor. The number of women searching for a female financial advisor is sure to rise with everyone from the Federal Reserve Bank to the Social Security Administration and the U.S. Department of Labor all proclaiming that women will control two-thirds of the wealth in the United States by the year 2030. It can be to your advantage as a financial advisor to not only think about ways to connect with female clients, but also recruit more female financial advisors to your team.
According to research conducted by the Certified Financial Planner Board, women make great financial advisors for many reasons. Many women tend to be goal-oriented and thus naturally in tune with the goals of their clients related to investment strategy. Women are also traditionally highly empathetic, having a greater understanding of the emotions surrounding financial decisions. In general, they tend to do more research than their male counterparts, trade less often than men, and remain calm when turbulent financial situations arise. Women naturally approach risk differently than men do, which can bring diversity of prospective and approach to your team. And women often remain goal oriented instead of letting a competitive streak drive their decision making. Female financial advisors also tend to be more satisfied in their work and loyal to their firms than their male counterparts. Of course, every individual is unique and a valuable part or your team, but it’s hard to deny that some of these factors would be an asset in growing your financial business.
Whether you’re a male or female advisor, there are many ways to encourage potential female advisors. How? Speak at a career day at local high schools or attend career fairs at colleges and universities so you can talk with women about opportunities in the field. Offering women internships in your firm and/or offering to mentor them are great ways to help move women into financial planning. And make sure that any female financial advisor currently on your team sees a clear path to senior leadership, too. Encourage them to pursue professional development opportunities and attend conferences that can help them to build on their skills and industry knowledge.
Not only are your female financial advisors working to help clients meet their goals, they are also working toward their own personal goals. For many women, this becomes a juggling act as they serve as the primary caretaker within their family. You can encourage these women by proving that you value work/life balance by offering work-from-home or flex-time options. Your willingness to help them achieve a better, more balanced life goes a long way toward loyalty to your firm—and to ensuring women stay in the financial field.
In a time when gender bias still exists, take an honest and hard look at your work environment to make sure women are being treated equally and fairly, especially when it comes to compensation. This may include looking at different compensation models. In addition, create a peer network for women working in your firm so that they feel supported and connected.
Women are natural collaborators, making them valuable team members as you look to grow your financial planning business. Making a conscious effort to increase gender diversity at your firm will go a long way in attracting female financial advisors to the industry—and, specifically, to your team.
At Berthel Fisher, we are proud to say that 25% of our leading advisors are women and we strive to grow that number exponentially. We proudly support our RISE Women Advisor Council to encourage and inspire women in the financial industry. In addition, we make it our mission to help our advisors deliver the best client experience in the business and are continuously investing in every advisor on our team. If you are interested in joining Berthel Fisher, get started today or give us a call at 1-800-356-5234.