Workshops developed by women can help inspire attendees to take action to improve their financial futures
New York, September 24, 2014 — TIAA-CREF, a leading financial services provider, announced today that more than 10,000 women have participated in its Woman2Woman Financial Empowerment Workshops, a series of interactive workshops developed and delivered by women to promote retirement readiness and financial well-being. Since the program’s creation three years ago, hundreds of individual workshops led by female financial advisors have been held across the country to help women take control of their finances and plan for the future.
Women face a number of challenges ahead of retirement due to factors such as longer life expectancies, lower average wages and a larger share of caregiving responsibilities. On average, they put aside just 6.9 percent of their pay compared to 7.6 percent for men.1 What’s more, recent research has found that women are less confident than men about what they are doing with those savings, with only 26 percent feeling confident making investment decisions.2
"We started these empowerment workshops to turn the statistics around," said Catherine McCabe, senior managing director, Field Consulting Group, TIAA-CREF. "Through this initiative, along with other financial education programs, we're giving women the necessary tools to help build long-term financial well-being for themselves and their families."
Importantly, the workshops are inspiring more women to take action. More than one-third of attendees later request in-person meetings with a financial advisor to discuss their retirement goals and objectives, and more than two-thirds of attendees increased their contributions to their retirement plans. Many women also reviewed their investment portfolios to help make sure they’re on track to accrue adequate savings.3
"Our experience with the Woman2Woman program shows that women who receive financial education and support – in a way that's relevant to them – take concrete steps toward a secure retirement," said McCabe. "While every individual has their own financial needs and goals, many women are playing catch-up with their retirement savings and can benefit from our guidance."
Through the Woman2Woman Financial Empowerment series, the company has developed a number of workshops for women who are in a variety of life stages, from the early-career woman paying down debt to the woman with more complex estate tax issues to consider.
- "She's Got It: A Woman’s Guide to Saving and Investing" introduces core concepts and strategies to help build a plan, set goals and take action.
- "Postcards from the Future: A Woman's Guide to Financially Ever After" shares strategies for women nearing retirement to identify a retirement vision and define the next steps.
- "Start to Finish: The Early Career Woman's Guide to Financial Wisdom" explores the benefits of early savings and the essentials of budgeting.
- "Attention to Detail: Financial Finishing Touches for Women" focuses on understanding how to build an estate plan as well as the flexible income choices for retirement accounts.
"Yale was thrilled to be an early adopter of the Woman2Woman program 'Postcards from the Future' and we congratulate TIAA-CREF on this milestone," said Kate Castello, benefits planning, Yale University. "More than 200 women from Yale's faculty and staff have attended this dynamic and highly informative workshop, which is geared toward the unique challenges faced by women in investment and retirement planning. Feedback from our attendees has been highly positive, and we look forward to reaching even more Yale women in the future."
"The Yale Working Women's Network is committed to the empowerment of Yale's women employees, both personally and professionally, and has been a strong collaborator in TIAA-CREF's Woman2Woman program. WWN looks forward to continued engagement with TIAA-CREF and this exciting initiative," added Kathryn Bell and Tanisha Asbery, Yale Working Women's Network co-chairpersons.
"The biggest success story here is the impact these programs have made in the lives of women," said Nina Charnley, managing director, Individual Advisory Services, TIAA-CREF. "This serves as a powerful example of how we can help women, and all our clients, achieve their financial goals."
The workshops are a part of a larger initiative that also includes a greatly expanded online community for women. On its newly launched Woman2Woman site, women can share financial insights and learn from financial experts. The site is rich with articles and resources than can help women navigate financial challenges.
For more information on the Woman2Woman Financial Empowerment Workshops and other financial education programs, please visit: https://www.tiaa.org/public/advice-guidance/Woman2Woman
TIAA-CREF has been providing advice and guidance since 2005 at no additional cost to clients. The company currently offers in-person financial services at more than 100 offices across the country, in addition to phone representatives who are licensed and trained to provide advice. These services provide individuals with suggested asset diversification strategies and investment recommendations to support their success in reaching retirement income goals.
TIAA-CREF (www.tiaa.org) is a national financial services organization with $613 billion in assets under management (as of 6.30.14) and is a leading provider of retirement services in the academic, research, medical and cultural fields.