What Do Wealthy Women Want?

According to an article in AdvisorOne, it’s no great secret that advisors frequently lose women as clients after they divorce or when they become widowed. The bigger secret is figuring out how to make them stay. To emphasize just how critical this is, Kate Healy, a TDAI director, noted that at least two-thirds of the nation’s wealth will be in the hands of women by 2030. Eileen O’Connor, a vice president of wealth management at McLean Asset Management of McLean, added that an increasingly significant portion of generational wealth transfer now goes to daughters.

According to Ms. O’Connor, when it comes to getting and keeping ultra high net worth women as clients, it comes down to one thing: “Women need more education and validation than men to make financial decisions, and they can easily detect whether an advisor is really listening to them.” She notes that advisors need to be softer and states that it’s okay to ask emotional questions. For example, O’Connor stated that its okay to say ‘I notice that you are not as upbeat as you normally are, can I ask why?’ According to Healy, women also want to be understood in terms of their unique profile and values. In this regard, she outlined the financial planning needs of four distinct demographics of ultra high net worth women: (1) married women; (2) working women; (3) retired women and (4) sandwich women (women providing for both aging parents and children).

To address the needs of these women, changing the font to pink will not change the service provided. Instead, O’Connor notes that ultra high net worth women want to work with an advisor who recognizes the importance of an authentic relationship. Because of that desire, she notes that 80.3% believe it is critically important to have an advisor who is a fiduciary, which she notes as a primary indicator of whether the advisor has a client’s best interest at heart.





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