Amanda Steinberg, President and Founder of DailyWorth, admits that prior to founding DailyWorth she knew how to make money but didn’t know what to do with it. And, she’s not afraid to share that she’s “still a work-in-progress”.

Me too.

Before I left Wall Street I was a personal finance failure. Granted, I earned a good income – some of which was being directed to a 401(k) – and I bought an apartment that fortunately grew in value. However, on the converse side, I had no idea how much my life cost, I used credit cards as if they were free money, I spent too much on cabs and other frivolous purchases and I frittered away the opportunity to save A LOT. Despite working in finance the topic of personal finance didn’t excite me in the slightest. The idea of budgeting was akin to wearing a straightjacket and saving was something I might do if I ran out of imagination about what to spend my money on!

And then I heard Manisha Thakor speak at the first S.H.E. Summit in 2012.

It was just six months after I left Wall Street to embark upon a journey of career discovery. This process forced me into acknowledging (and fixing, or at least starting to fix) my financial follies. Manisha woke me up from my “financial coma” and through a few serendipitous connections I became involved with GoGirl Finance. Exposure to the topic of personal finance – in a way that resonated with me – sowed the seed of interest that motivated me to learn more. I am very grateful for that!

Full speed ahead to 2014 and I was honored to be invited to moderate the panel discussion, “Managing Money, Making Meaning” featuring Amanda Steinberg, Manisha Thakor (founder and CEO of MoneyZen Wealth Management) and Gail Cohen (Vice Chairman and General Trust Counsel at Fiduciary Trust) at S.H.E. Summit last Friday. You can watch it below – if you enjoy it, please share it on Twitter and Facebook with hashtag #SHESummit.

The opportunity to talk about women’s desire to connect money with meaning particularly enthused me. I’m buoyed by the research from the Center for Talent Innovation which found that 88% of female survey respondents “look to wealth to provide a larger basket of goods, not just for themselves and their families, but also for society at large.” This research, when combined with the fact that by 2030 women will control two-thirds of the wealth, points to an enormous opportunity for society at large.

As Amanda said on Friday, “the influence is ours.”

Panel_SHE Summit

Share the Wisdom

But, we have a confidence gap to close before we can fully embrace this opportunity – both, for ourselves and as stewards of wealth for society. Fortunately, the panel had a ton of advice, and plenty of inspiration, for anyone trying to wake up from their own financial coma:

Don’t beat yourself up: “the default language of finance is ‘male speak’” @ManishaThakor @GoGirlFinance #SHESummit http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh [TWEET THIS!]

“Even some people working in finance don’t understand what they’re talking about.” @ManishaThakor #SHESummit http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh [TWEET THIS]

When it comes to personal finance: “There is no stupid question” – Gail Cohen http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh SHESummit [TWEET THIS]

Only 30% of Americans keep a budget – struggling w it doesn’t make you a personal finance failure -@AmandaSteinberg http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh [TWEET THIS]

“The ultimate point of a budget is so that you can save money” – @AmandaSteinberg http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh #SHESummit @GoGirlFinance [TWEET THIS]

50/30/20 rule – 50% needs, 30% wants, 20% savings (&/or debt if you’re in NYC) – @ManishaThakor #SHESummit http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh [TWEET THIS]

On budgets “Boundaries can set you free” – @ManishaThakor http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh #SHESummit @GoGirlFinance [TWEET THIS]

If a financial advisor doesn’t answer your Qs in a way you understand find someone who will – Gail Cohen #SHESummit http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh [TWEET THIS]

Fees: every incremental 1% in fees over a 30 yr period eats up 20% of value of your assets @ManishaThakor #SHESummit http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh [TWEET THIS]

“This is an unprecedented time for women’s economic power” @BKLYN_Brummie @GoGirlFinance #SHESummit http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh [TWEET THIS]

“Not every day that a woman in our circle launches a new fund to support other women” @AmandaSteinberg #SHESummit http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh [TWEET THIS]

.@CatalystInc studies show that stocks of co’s with more women in l’ship roles perform better – Gail Cohen #SHESummit http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh [TWEET THIS]

“It’s not just about the return on your money, it’s about the return on society as well” @BKLYN_Brummie #SHESummit http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh [TWEET THIS]

And, last but not least: “It’s time for the finance industry to lean into women” -@BKLYN_Brummie @gogirlfinance #SHESummit http://buff.ly/1ip0Ygh [TWEET THIS]

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We want to hear from you for a chance to win a $100 Amazon gift card.  

Women’s economic power keeps on growing – to fully embrace it we NEED to talk about money! We’re giving away 3 $100 Amazon gift cards to our favorite responses to the following questions:

What 3 things would help you:

  • Become the “Chief Financial Officer” of your life; and/or
  • Align managing your money with meaning

Send your ideas to info@gogirlfinance.com by June 30, 2014. Open to US residents only: Full contest rules are here.