#77 Fixes for Feminists in a Time of Trump: Sallie Krawcheck

Anyone who cares about diversity, feminism and closing the gender gap should be fired up about this show.

Author, entrepreneur and - yes provocateur - Sallie Krawcheck is our guest.  Her forthcoming 2017 book is "Own It: The Power of Women at Work."  Sallie is CEO and Co-Founder of Ellevest, a digital investment platform and wealth management site for women.  

For years, she has been well known as one of the most senior women on Wall Street and was called "the last honest analyst" by Fortune Magazine after the 2008 financial crisis.  She has deep experience in "the biggest boys club in the world" - the financial industry, where 86% of investment advisers are men.

 First off we talk about why the Trump Presidency could be good for feminists.  “It’s (locker room talk) on the table now,"  she says. The infamous conversation with Billie Bush, and the widely discussed New York Times column "How Wall Street Bro Talk Keeps Women Down" are both "a really important wake up call."

 Sallie lists the many benefits of true diversity. Organizations where many different voices are respected perform better than those with narrow like-minded leaders from the same gender and social class. 

 Being successful does not mean acting like men, Sallie tells us. "The power of diversity is not bringing a bunch of women or people of difference together and having them act like middle-aged white guys."

Sallie’s Solutions: 

  • For women: Make sure your work gets noticed your supervisors and make sure goals are quantified and acknowledged. 
  • For men:  Be a fully equal partner with your spouse:  do the laundry.
  • For companies: Diversity is a crucial ingredient to a firm's success, but it won't happen without clear leadership from the top. 
  • Investing: Diversify your portfolio and save for the long term.  Instead of trying to beat the market, invest in a range of mutual funds that include U.S. and international sources plus large and small companies.

#74 Fixes for an Insular World: Talk to Strangers. Kio Stark

"There are genuine emotional benefits when we connect with strangers," says our guest, Kio Stark. These fleeting interactions are important interruptions in the steady routine of our lives. "They bring connectedness and belonging."

Kio is the author of "When Strangers Meet: How People You Don't Know Can Transform You."  Her popular TED Talk has received more than 1,450,000 views. "My own interactions with strangers resonate with meaning for me," she writes in her book. "You find questions whose answers you thought you knew. You reject the ideas that make us so suspicious of each other."

"We live in pretty insular ways," Kio tells us in this episode of "How Do We Fix It?"  "When you talk to somebody who is different than you, you are forced to see this person as an individual in a way that you wouldn't have done before." 

This speaks to our divided politics at a time when it is often far to easy to vilify people we don't agree with.  Being more open to people of different races, social class and age groups can open us up to surprising moments of pleasure and transformative possibilities. 

Kio explains how shy, frightened or suspicious people can benefit from being more open to briefly allowing strangers into their lives.  We discuss how dogs and babies can make it easier to speak with people you don't know.

"There's an amazing power in being seen.  We live in cities we don't see each other," Kio tells us.  "When you are seen, when you notice someone is acknowledging you it's a momentary bond."

#73 Why Nonprofits Need to Stop Begging: Jennifer McCrea

Do you believe you can make a difference?  What improvements to the world have been made by nonprofit organizations?  What lessons have been learnt by philanthropists about delivering services and furthering their cause?

These and many more questions are answered here by our guest, Jennifer McCrea.  She's a leading global expert on giving and fundraising.  Jennifer works to transform the practice of philanthropy She discusses her important work with the Born Free Africa collaborative, which works for the eradication of mother-to-child transmission of H.I.V.

"While of course we have to get money moving in support of the work we are doing," Jennifer tells us, "it's not about money at the center of the relationship."

In her course at Harvard University, Jennifer has worked with leaders from the nonprofit and social enterprise sectors to improve their organizations results from fundraising.

"I keep the work itself at the center of the relationship and money just becomes the gas that goes in the car."  Philanthropists need to avoid "a begging bowl mentality," she says.

Solutions:

  • Philanthropic groups need to be collaborative, working in concert with other organizations in their space. 
  • Transparency and learning from those who these groups are trying to help should be part of their DNA. 
  • For those of us who give money to nonprofits, sign up for more than donations. Be part of their cause. Monitor their mission.
  • In our personal lives, when someone needs our help, listen openly and don’t always try to fix their problems.

#66 Fixing Everyday Money Mistakes: ABC News Correspondent, Rebecca Jarvis

How much do you know about money?  Many of us make simple mistakes that cost us hundreds, if not thousands of dollars a year.

According to a recent study by The FINRA Investor Education Foundation, only 37% of Americans have high financial literacy. 29% of 18-34 year-olds with a mortgage have been late with a monthly payment and more than one in four people use high-cost forms of borrowing like pawn shops and payday loans.

And even worse, many of us think we know much more about personal finance than we do.

In this episode we have simple fixes for money mistakes.  Our guest, ABC News Chief Business, Technology and Economics Correspondent Rebecca Jarvis, explains how a few simple steps will improve our chances of staying out debt and avoiding scams.  

"One of the things that drives me nuts is the number of charlatans out there who are selling products saying it can't lose it can't fail you're going to make money no matter what, " Rebecca tells us.  "Anyone who tells you that... run in the opposite direction." 

Solutions:

  •  Never use credit cards to borrow money.  Most have very high interest rates.
  • Understand why compound interest hurts borrowers and helps savers.
  • Fix it and forget it: How everyday habits automatic saving - putting a small amount of money away each week - can lead to a secure retirement.
  • How employers can help workers to save money.
  • Why better financial education should be a priority for schools and colleges. 

Useful websites:  Mint Quicken and other websites can help you with a weekly budget. Betterment and Wealthfront are savings and investment sites. Blooom offers advice about how to improve the rate of return on 401k and other retirement savings funds.