By Haley Allick
Wealth management? Like most people my age I grew up learning that saving was important. When we were young my older brother and I would put our monthly allowance into a savings account. Today I’m 24 years old with a Master’s Degree in Education and have been a successful public school teacher for 2 years. Needless to say, my previous form of “wealth-management” no longer applies.
Reality check—the day I opened my 403b plan I was perplexed. My financial advisor sat me down and pulled out a chart that stated my investment options, the age I was expected to retire at and the amount of money I was expected to receive when I retired. As he spoke, I sat there confused about which mutual fund I wanted to invest in and what percentage should go into which fund. After he left, I was unsure about the investments I’d made. Questions loomed in my mind; How did this work? What was a mutual fund? How would my money grow? Where was it being placed? Did I make the best choice for my current situation?
By conventional wisdom I knew that I had done something responsible. But conventional wisdom did not explain how investing works in today’s world. I am not alone, my millennial colleagues who are lawyers, dentists, teachers and financial analysts are not sure either. Ask them about wealth management or investing and you’ll hear conventional wisdom. Such as, “I did it and that’s what counts.”
Investing is fascinating to me and I’m excited to learn more each day. In the past year I’ve read several books on investing such as, The MoneyTrack Method by Pam Krueger and Warren Buffet’s favorite book, The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham. I’ve also watched Pam’s hit PBS television series MoneyTrack. I read the Wall Street Journal and listen to the Harvard Business Review’s Ideacast Podcast daily.
Social media is an optimal tool for sharing wealth management solutions. However, how do I determine which advice to take and from who? I’m working through the many questions I have about building wealth, investing and finance. I’ll be documenting my journey towards learning how to invest for my future on the WealthRamp blog. Make sure to follow me on Twitter @HaleyEAllick!