On Women’s Day, we should recognize and appreciate the trailblazing women who are taking on roles in finance. From CFOs and financial advisors to entrepreneurs and venture capitalists, women are increasingly becoming influential voices within the industry.
They are pushing for greater gender equality, challenging outdated norms and disrupting the status quo. By embracing new ideas and technologies, they are creating innovative solutions that are transforming the way businesses operate.
Nidhi Nagar, an Instagram finance content creator tells MintGenie in an interview about how women have an inherent ability to think things through and plan ahead and hence, they are moving away from sitting on cash to making it work.
In 2021, she began her journey of creating finance content while pursuing her MBA in Finance. Her video "Zero Charge on Phone repair" went viral and has 6.8 million views on Instagram and "Free Baggage air allowance at Air India" has garnered 7.7 million views.
What does money mean to you?
Money for me is freedom, freedom to choose a life which I want, freedom to do things which I want not what society wants me to do. Once you start earning, you start living your life on your terms.
For some reason, finance is still considered a man's industry. Take us through the beginning of your work in the financial industry and the challenges you faced.
We are never taught about finance, money or investing. What our mothers have taught us for decades is to take care of the family and kids. Just do the home chores, and raise the kids, that’s what we are expected to do. And they set us this limit.
When the boys are in school or working, girls are nevertheless frequently left in charge of household duties. One of my friends got married last year right after graduation, and they aren't permitted to work or do anything else. In my class, there were a lot of females who excelled academically while yet remaining at home due to the mentality we currently possess. But, we must overcome the obstacles and build the life we deserve for ourselves.
We need to break that mindset, the only way we could break this mindset is by becoming financially independent.
Share with us a piece of advice you always follow when it comes to money.
Be a kanjoos, we often tease others for being kanjoos. But I feel it’s good, you are not spending on useless/impulsive purchases. I personally don’t spend on random things. I take time before I make any purchases. This way I have more time analyze whether I need this product or service or not max believe 90% of the time it’s NO. So don’t make random purchases, give yourself some time and be a little kanjoos.
How do you think men and women differ from each other when it comes to handling money?
Women are the savers whereas men spend more on random things. Typically, men spend more on food, transportation, and entertainment, while women spend more on clothing, personal care, and healthcare. Women spend around 70 to 80% of their money on family or home utilities. Men are more interested and well-versed in investment strategies on the other hand women are much more conservative when it comes to investing.
Women are better at planning their finances and meeting their monthly saving goals, while men tend to make more last-minute decisions. Both have their own perspectives, but we can definitely learn from each other and ease the game.
What changes have you seen in the way women approach their finances in the last few years?
Participation of women in the workforce has increased, and we saw a surge in brokerage accounts as well. Women have started taking charge of their finances. They have an inherent ability to think things through and plan ahead and hence, they are moving away from sitting on cash to making it work.
What do men need to learn from women on the money front?
I think men take decisions a bit faster when it comes to money whereas women take time, they analyse the risk factor better as women are often taught to save more. Men tend to overestimate their abilities around planning and investing, thus leading to overly risky investments. So, they could learn from women that it’s better to analyse the risk and don’t run for faster returns.
What money advice would you give to young girls, students, and newly working women?
Take your own decisions, be rebellious, and focus on money because that is what going to give you freedom and confidence in life. Start making a budget, and plan/control your expenses. Learn about investing. Start SIP. Don’t just depend on a single source of income, create more streams of income.
How can women be more confident when making financial decisions?
Knowledge. Focus on gaining knowledge skills that help you do better in your respective career or life goals. Nothing can beat the level of confidence you have once you become financially independent. So If you want to be confident in your life, be financially independent first. When you are financially independent, you take charge of your own life and that’s when you become confident. You know what’s wrong what’s right? What’s going to work for you? And that is what confidence is.
What do you think needs to change to improve gender equality in the finance world?
We need to support each other and men need to come forward and push their mothers, girlfriend, wife, and sisters into managing their own money, teaching them how to invest. We need to come out of the mindset that money is related to the men only.
Recently, I was watching some content where a few questions were asked to men like if they would be comfortable if their partner earns more money. Who should pay on the date? Who should take care of the household expenditure?
Shockingly 90% of the men said they wouldn’t be comfortable with a woman is earning more than them, they said the men should be responsible for all the expenses.
They need to take care of the house expense. We need to change this mindset.
55% of women in the country are either not investing or are unaware of their investments. So we definitely need to teach them. Make them aware about the finance world. And come out of the mindset that women can’t manage their money.