Yes, it’s Mother’s Day. But after you take a few hours of well deserved rest, I encourage you to consider the most amazing gift you can give your daughter. It will allow her to keep the gift giving lonnnnnng after she leaves home for adulthood.
I read a recent article about the pay gap that women experience in this country. It sums up the number of years that women will have to work in order to reach pay equity with men.
And yes, women of color have a glass of something first. You will need to calm your nerves when you see the differences.
I want to challenge you to help your daughters and the next generation deal with this issue. They need to be prepared for the current inequities. None of the stats will probably surprise you. But, there are small steps you can take today to help them shift the trends:
Allow them to make age-appropriate family financial decisions
My daughter is pint sized. But I sent her up to the register recently with cash. I wanted her to buy the cookies by herself.
First, we talked about the correct change. We also discussed the conversation that she might have with the cashier to ensure that she received the correct change. And yes, I hovered at a distance.
It’s soooo easy in our cashless environment to do everything ourselves. So involve your daughter in decisions where possible.
Let them make mistakes
I purposefully stood back and let my daughter handle the entire cookie buying exchange.
And it took every bone in my body to keep my mouth shut. LOL
This is key. We want to empower our children. But it’s sooooo easy to want to step in and do all of the decision making.
Nope, let them learn about financial decisions through experiences. Even when you see them crashing and burning. Even when you want to jump in and save them.
Otherwise, they won’t feel the sting of the lesson.
Be clear. I am not suggesting that you give them the PIN codes to the family bank account. But where possible, give them the opportunity to make family financial decisions.
Perhaps you give them a set amount that you’ll pay for extracurriculars. Let them do the research and pick the classes.
Why not give them money to buy back to school clothes? And allow them to deal with the rough choice of having only a few pair of stylish clothes vs a full wardrobe.
Or if they have to sell something for a school fundraiser – walk with them to friends and family and make them deliver the sales speech? Don’t do it for them. As much as it would be easier.
Each child is different. So use your judgment. But have them start making more decisions.
Teach them how to negotiate
I can remember the first time I negotiated with a client. I was nervvvvvvouuus. Because I had always been told to be grateful for whatever was offered when I first got started.
Until I realized that many other businesses were earning WAY more.
Luckily for me, I had visited countries like Egypt and Morocco when I was younger. Countries where negotiating is a way of life. It was almost insulting if I didn’t go through the negotiation process with the seller.
So I had a teensy bit of practice.
It’s a conversation that affects many women when they start their first jobs. They often are willing to accept whatever salary is offered. And that has a lifetime impact on their career earnings.
So don’t jump into these ideas all at once. But consider tackling them on a regular basis.
Have her start negotiating in small stages. And yes, I know that teens are good at negotiating for things with their parents or teaches. But encourage her to test that boundary with others respectfully.
Your daughter – and her future financial earnings – will thank you for this investment of time.