When attending meetings or conferences, women in the financial services industry have a secret code. There is a specific look we give other women we see; a nod or glance that conveys support and admiration for what they are doing. A look that shares our hopes that we had more women to share this look with.
Depending on your source, the amount of female financial advisors is anywhere from one-fifth to one-third of the financial advisors working today. And the number of female leaders in this industry is dismally lower and decreasing since female executives leaving the financial services industry is nearly double that of their male counterparts.
Women’s History Month is a reminder of how the financial services industry is ripe for a second glance from women. Women looking for a second career or one that allows flexibility in juggling a family or other commitments. All while allowing you to be in control of a business where you are doing worthy work that makes all the difference in the lives of the people you reach.
Not to mention, clients are looking to work with someone that looks like them. Someone who has had a similar journey in life and has solutions to similar financial concerns they may have. Our industry can better serve ALL consumers by taking intentional steps to recruit more women into the industry, by providing a work-life flexibility that accommodates the needs of mothers (and all parents for that matter), fostering a supportive environment for women, and making more opportunities for advancement and development available to women. This will also help our industry understand the value of bringing in diversity of thought and perspective.
We all have a role to play in this so that our industry isn’t seen as the female version of Find Wally (fun fact – twins Wenda and Wilma are the two female characters in the puzzle books). The first step is to acknowledge the lack of women in our industry and then make small or large changes to help change that. No matter your position or role in this industry, we can each take part in making our industry be more representative of the individuals, families and businesses we promise to protect.