Health, Wealth & Lipstick - One Woman's Journey to Take the Stress Out of Money
November 19, 2018 .4 min read
myWorth wants to help women at every stage of life to feel comfortable and confident when it comes to taking control of their financial future. To do that, you need comfort in knowing just who is providing you with insight, knowledge, and confidence.
Meet Carol L. Hager, a Financial Adviser to myWorth. Carol is one of the many diverse women, with incredibly strong career backgrounds and life experiences, who is here to help you take control of your narrative and help you make the best decisions for your future.
Check out our recent interview with Carol and just how she got her start in her career and what prompted the birth of Health, Wealth and Lipstick - a sisterhood of empowered women that provides support to those who are ready to embrace the life they want and deserve.
What Prompted You to Become a Financial Adviser After Retirement?
When I retired, I rolled my money over to a young man with Merrill Lynch. I told him I did not know anything about what he did, but I that was good at what I did.
So first, shame on me for not knowing any better – but no one ever talked to me about the need for understanding my financial wellbeing or how to think about financial goals, let alone how to define them.
After I retired, I became a Realtor and sold homes for one year and did not like being a Realtor.
So I put together a resume and was called into American Express for a career fair – I was by far the oldest of the group and one of the very few women.
When they described the job, I thought,
Oh my gosh, I love numbers and I am good with people. I can do this
Never did I imagine being an entrepreneur – which is what we truly are, to be so hard.
I think it probably took at least five years before I became comfortable and had some confidence in my ability. So, you could say, it was by chance that I am a Financial Advisor today, and often I think to myself,
Why Am I Working this Hard?!
But when I think about my clients, I know exactly why I work so hard. I love my clients, I love taking care of them, and I consider each of them a dear friend. And with some hard work, an open mind, and by working together, we can make positive changes in their lives.
What is Health, Wealth & Lipstick (HWL)? Why Did You Start This Group?
The board of HWL is made up of myself and five other women who each know firsthand that major events like divorce, the loss of a spouse, a career change, and financial shifts elevate our emotions and can shake us at the core. The mission of HWL is to empower women to make informed, confident, decisions while encouraging self-care and self-worth. Our goal is to help women suddenly alone to make sound decisions in a time that is very emotional and to understand that the choices they make at this moment will impact them today and in the future.
We believe every woman should be informed and feel confident when making decisions during times of uncertainty. Our ladies’ monthly educational events provide open, non-biased, and relative information in an intimate, confidential setting.
Why Health Wealth & Lipstick?
I am a CDFA® and while attending a conference, I learned about various groups providing education and support to women going through a divorce. It was then that I just knew what I wanted to do. I developed the idea for Health, Wealth and Lipstick - a program aiming to make a difference in the lives of women, and it got a great response.
Health, because we women must take care of our health. All too often we put others first and neglect our well-being. We must realize, we really cannot take care of anyone if we do not take care of ourselves first. And health is so much more than physical: it is mental, it is social, and it is spiritual. We must learn to respect ourselves if we expect others to respect us.
Wealth, I like to say,
Money matters, money matters, money matters. We must understand how money works.
This is balancing your checkbook, saving for retirement, buying a car, buying a house, understanding our P & C statements, legal issues in our lives, and living within our means.
Lipstick is the fun piece. But how we feel about the way we look is very serious. Women say they do not care, but we know that they truly do. If we feel like we look good, we feel better about ourselves and we have more confidence. Lipstick can be so much more than our appearance, it is also how we carry ourselves and our self-health, self-talk has a dramatic impact on our overall appearance. Lipstick must be addressed.
How is Working with Women Different?
While I do have men as clients and I like working with men and their wives, I find women much more open and easier to have a conversation.
I think communication, which is mostly listening, is the foundation. With that, I think women are looking for something or someone different than men. I think women want a relationship, something more personal while men want to be taken cared of.
Why Do You Think Women Are More Reluctant to Seek Help When it Comes to Their Money?
I had a woman find me on the web. She was going through a divorce and was looking for a financial advisor. She told me she was embarrassed because she was 53 and did not know anything about this "stuff."
I believe women feel they know less than they really do and they are hesitant because not only do they not know where to begin but they don’t know who would be willing to listen and guide them.
What is Your Approach to Making Women Feel More Comfortable Talking to a Financial Adviser?
We have 15 seconds to make a first impression and I believe that in the brief window of opportunity, we must connect with a sincere greeting and still project confidence without arrogance. From there, we have a conversation where we learn about them and engage on a woman to woman perspective - where we usually find things in common.
It boils down to connecting authentically and building trust, which is the foundation of any meaningful relationship.
What is One of The Most Powerful Things You Have Learned From Our Clients?
They need us and I am humbled by that need.
What is One Thing You Wish All Women Going Through Major Life Changes Should Know?
Don’t do it alone. It is okay to ask for help.
Don’t be embarrassed. I have women constantly saying that they’re just not good at this "financial stuff" and that's when I say "that's why you need me".
And I would say, don’t wait until the last minute. Begin the planning process early, develop a relationship with an advisor and make sure you review whatever you are doing.
Ande has made it her mission to break down the emotional, behavioral and societal barriers that stand between women and strong financial foundations.
She's widely recognized as a driving force in the financial community, having risen to the top of the primarily male-dominated insurance world as the former head of a multi-million-dollar fintech company and a VP at Penn Mutual.
Ande launched myWorth to inspire a financial awakening among women who are eager to take control of their financial journeys. Her first book will be published in October 2019.