In this world, power is often clubbed with money. In India, even in dual income families money matters are handled by men. So they wield the power over the family. Women have to look up to their spouses for their needs and wants. Our society also has the same view. Just check the advertisements of life insurance companies. They talk about the risk of death of a man only. They show the widow thanking the insurance policy the deceased spouse bought. None shows the risk of death of a woman in a family.
Behaviourally for most of the women family is their world and for most men world is their family. The stability and financial success of a family will be more if the financially literate woman manages the finances of the family because her first priority will always be the family. But unfortunately we have an irrational situation where the men whose one of the priorities is family is handling the family finances. This has to change.
Women should be financial empowered if real women empowerment should happen. Financial Empowerment of women should start from girlhood. Daughters can do wonders to you if you engage them with money from childhood!
As soon as your daughter is able to count and do basic maths, she should be taught about money. You need not take any classes for that. But get her acquainted with money like counting coins or notes. You have to engage her with the money aspects in your day to day life like asking her to find out how much balance should you receive if Rs.100 is given to buy a thing priced at Rs.35. You should ask her to collect the coins daily and put in a box and ask her to count it at the end of the month. This will make her understand how big amounts can be made by accumulating small amounts.
You can also open children’s account with a bank and ask her to deposit the money collected every month in that account. Also advise her to put the money she receives as gifts in that. She will see money growing month after month and will feel proud about herself. Tell her to set a goal like buying a cycle or a tab after 3 or 4 years. Now she will become focussed about reaching the goal and try to save as much as possible to reach that aspirational goal. She will automatically start doing her Financial Planning. If you are able to get your daughters to this level, then they will never fail in their life in money matters.
Secondly, she should be educated about the power of earning. Ideally she should get into a job after studies. But there can be situations where she could not take up a regular job. As long as she can earn money, she need to depend on anybody for money to meet her needs and sometimes can save the family from adversities. There are many things women can do in their spare time which can fetch them some income. They can even convert their hobbies into income generation avenues.
Thirdly, you should make her understand the difference between need and want. Need is the essential or basic requirement. There is no limit for spending money. But in order to live happily she has to spend wisely. Want is the desire. Buying a cell phone is a need. Buying a iphone is a want. If she starts figuring out what is need and what is want, you can be rest assured that she won’t drain out money.
Many parents do not engage daughters in money matters and do not listen to them even if they comment about parent’s money matters. Financial empowerment of women can bring more stability for the finances of the family and increase the success rate of achieving the family goals. Engage them and listen to them; sometimes you will also get valuable advice from your daughters on you own Financial Planning!
By Sanjeev Kumar G, Certified Financial Planner and Founder of PrognoAdvisor.Com