Advice ‘about emotions, not numbers’

Female financial advisers have the opportunity to highlight their different skill sets as female clients do not want to be “talked down to” by a male adviser.

Speaking to Money Management, Natallia Smith, principal financial adviser at Melbourne-based TruWealth Advice, said she had specifically focused her practice on female clients who were single, widowed or divorced.

“When you first start a business, you work with everyone but as it went on, I found I really loved working with women,” Smith said.

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“A lot of them were worried about making mistakes and I found I could add real value and satisfaction to their lives.”

She said there was a trend among women who had relied on men in their life to look after finances which meant they were unsure how to act after a death or divorce.

“I have women come to me who say they left the finances to their partners, or that they’re ‘bad at maths’ or are fearful so they haven’t achieved financial independence and my job is to give them the knowledge they need to do so,” Smith said.

“Women have the mentality that it’s the ‘man’s job’, they might be good at saving and budgeting but they haven’t got into investing. They accumulate this money and then they struggle to know what to do with it and have it sitting in cash.”

She said female advisers had a different skillset to male ones which meant female clients sometimes preferred to speak with an adviser of the same sex as them.

“It’s more about communication, women are more empathetic, men focus on the results achieved in performance terms but for women it’s about the impact and the outcome of the investments. Women don’t want to be ‘talked down to’ by a male adviser,” she said.

“Financial planning is about people and emotions, not numbers.”

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Don't disagree with the points made except it doesn't have to be a female adviser, we have a reasonable sized group of death/divorce female clients. Males are capable too or supporting these people. Provided you are empathic and caring I don't see your sex as being material, nor is the making of generalisations.

It's pretty sad that M/s Smith generalises and thinks that most male advisers talk down to women.
In most cases, where there are couples, in 99.0% of decisions including financial ones, they are made by the women. And men know it just as much as the male adviser does, because if the "lady of the house" isn't happy, then nothing is going to happen without her consent.
As far as single women go, it's been my experience that gender isn't the issue. Each client whether male or female usually seeks financial advice on the basis of their needs, which entails growing and protecting their assets.
It doesn't get any more complicated than that.
For instance I've had a single female client for 18 years that had nothing when she started with me, that was married but now widowed and is 47 years young. She owns an unencumbered $1m property, has other financial assets in excess of $1.5M that I assist her to manage, and has no debt.
I have a number of hard working single females from all persuasions that fit your profile of the ideal client, but none of them are treated any differently from my male clients.
M/s Smith, I think it's good that you have decided to segregate a segment of the market that you think you can help, but stereotyping most male advisers as you have does nothing to enhance the sisterhood and adviser relationships.

I find this offensive,

I am a male adviser and I have found a niche with this client base and they would certainly say that I don’t talk down to them

I am compassionate, understanding and caring and it shows in the relationship with my clients

Don't get too stressed by the comments fellas. I've had numerous women over the years that have told me exactly what Natallia is saying. Even had one woman tell me that even though she did all of the interaction with the planner and it was her money to be invested in her name, the SOA was addressed to her husband, who had never met the planner.

So, it's probably not common, but it is still too common.

Have a great day.

Thanks for your feminist input, Jack Doff...

It's not feminist input it's probably a real case and I'm sure it happens from time time, hopefully less common than it used to be.

Read his name again... but slowly.

I was making a funny

Soz. Got the name first time, thought the feminist comment was serious. My bad.

Funny cause I have had a lot of women who went to Female Advisers and said the exact opposite, and said male financial advisers seem to be more caring. The vast majority of my clients are actually female too. My wife said when you go to another female for advice whether it's the Dentist or Doctor the female knows how much pain you should be able to take whilst the male always starts from a point of sympathy, caring and tenderness. Bit like when I punch a guy in the guts for a laugh I'll give my best but against a female I'll hold back and say are you sure...

It obviously all depends on context and tone. this woman says that women dont want to be talked down to by men. While your intent might be good, you might actually be one of these guys. When you treat a woman different to how you treat a man and ask "are you sure?", this could well be interpreted by some women that you dont trust their judgement or you dont think they are capable of making their own decision. A woman knowing the pain point and capability of another woman and empowering her is not necessarily a negative trait and is the opposite of "talking down" to someone. Just food for thought.

Really???…...I mean really ???

Yes. Really. Just because your intention is good does not mean that it might not still come across as condescending, it depends on tone and context. So you can take this opportunity to reflect on that, or you can be obnoxious and think you know better. The woman in this article will then continue to benefit from people like you.

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