3-minute article

10 ways to be a reliable resource to women

More women than men associate negative emotions with financial planning and say they are less confident about managing money according to one study. To help shift this trend, there are steps you can take to better engage women clients and build a relationship based on trust and confidence. Follow this checklist to help become a more reliable resource to women. 

  1. Treat couples as equals. 
    When meeting with couples, be sure to give equal attention and importance to each person in the conversation, helping both feel respected and included. Female clients should feel they have a voice and are empowered to make decisions. 
     
  2. Help improve financial literacy. 
    A study shows that women tend to be less financially literate than men, but are more willing to accept what they don’t know and learn from it. Recognize this willingness to deepen their knowledge by addressing questions and encouraging involvement every step of the way.  
     
  3. Consider single status. 
    On average, women are living longer than men, and many American baby boomers are splitting up after age 50, which is often called "gray" divorce. This can financially affect female clients more now than when they are younger and have fewer assets and longer timelines to save for retirement.
     
  4. Show the benefits of preparing for a long life.  
    Shine a light on the positives of a lengthy retirement and how a solid plan can help provide them with financial security for the retirement lifestyle they want.  
     
  5. Present financial products with objectivity. 
    You may feel the need to hard-sell your preferred products, but a neutral presentation of retirement savings options can be just as effective. Give female clients time to process ideas and concepts. Many women are likely assessing the impact of their decision on their legacy and loved ones.
     
  6. Be honest and transparent. 
    Throughout the conversation, provide sincere input and focus on solutions that can help meet their goals. Explain how you profit from commissions and fees from the different financial products you may offer. 
     
  7. Help inform around Social Security. 
    The program can have many stipulations — especially for those who have experienced divorce, remarriage and spousal death — that it’s easy for anyone to miss out on the best benefit option. Make sure you are well-informed enough about Social Security to be able to walk through their situation with your clients or direct them to ssa.gov.
  8. Emphasize guarantees and low-risk opportunities. 
    Take time to debunk any potential misconceptions that may be causing apprehension and show how many retirement plans can include stability and guarantees.  
     
  9. Link education and retirement planning. 
    Clearly explain retirement planning options, the ones that are the most suitable and match their risk profile.  
     
  10. Recognize the value of their business. 
    Widows may leave their financial professional following their husband’s death. Make sure you establish a valued relationship with your female clients from day one and prove that no matter what, they can count on you for support.  

Being a trusted resource to your female clients takes treating them as equal partners, actively listening to their questions and concerns and providing the education they need to feel empowered. When you understand the unique financial challenges women are facing and connect with them in a meaningful way, you are more likely to create loyal customers who stick with you for the long-term and recommend your business to others.

This information is brought to you by Athene — where innovative annuity solutions and unique interest crediting strategies are powered by unconventional thinking.