Think Like a Breadwinner with Jennifer Barrett


Apr 23, 2021

This episode is particularly for
ladies (though the boys could study a little one thing too). My
visitor, Jennifer Barrett, a monetary skilled and creator of the brand new
Think Like a
Breadwinner: a wealth-building manifesto for girls who need to earn
more (and fear much less)
shared some vital concepts about how we will modify our mindset to
take higher care of ourselves, in enterprise and at residence. If you want
what you hear, we’d find it irresistible should you write a overview,
subscribe on
Apple Podcasts
and signal
up for
Quick Tips from Marketing

Here’s the transcript:

Ilise Benun
When I heard the title of Jennifer Barrett’s new ebook, I knew I had
to have her on the podcast and I could not even wait to read the
ebook first. It’s referred to as “Think Like a Breadwinner,” and it made so
a lot sense to me on so many ranges that I’m thrilled to share this
dialog with you. We talked about what that breadwinner
mindset is why ladies should not socialized to take duty for
themselves, and the position that confidence performs in all of this.
That’s a thread that’s woven into virtually all the things I’m pondering
about and instructing today. So hear, and study.

Hello, Jenn, welcome to the podcast.

Jennifer Barrett
Thanks a lot for having me. My pleasure. I’m Jennifer
Barrett, and I’m the chief Education Officer at Acorns, which is a
saving and investing app with about 9 million customers and counting.
And I’m additionally the creator of the brand new ebook, “Think Like a
Breadwinner,” which is a wealth constructing manifesto for girls who
need to earn more and fear much less nicely.

…and who would not need that? Very cool. And full disclosure. I
haven’t read the ebook but. But I can not wait to and I simply wished
to have you ever on even earlier than I read the ebook, as a result of I really like the
title. And I liked your TED Talk. And I liked the dialog that
we had. And I simply really feel like there’s a lot we will speak about. Maybe
after I read the ebook, we’ll do a half two, primarily based on what I discovered
there. But let’s start by speaking in regards to the title of the ebook,
suppose like a breadwinner, what does that imply to you?

Well, pondering like a breadwinner actually means making the sorts of
cash selections that may guarantee you possibly can assist your self all through
your life, and possibly others too. And one key ingredient of that’s
investing to construct wealth. And you already know, for most girls, we have now
not been taught or inspired to take a position and even actually given the
message of how critically vital that’s. So that is a large half
of it. And then even, should you step again, I imply, although more
ladies than ever earlier than are shifting into the primary earner or
breadwinner position, we’re nonetheless being socialized for probably the most half
not to consider ourselves as breadwinners, as wealth builders.

And that’s to our detriment. So even when we find yourself in that position,
we regularly really feel unprepared. And both method, we’re actually lacking out
on reaching our full incomes and wealth constructing potential, if we
do not consider ourselves in these phrases, and actually give attention to not
simply incomes sufficient to pay the payments, however constructing sufficient wealth to
assist the lives that we would like.

I’m inclined to sort of use myself as the instance right here, and possibly
inform you a little bit about my tackle this from my previous. Maybe you
can remark and assist it with some concepts, and preserving in thoughts
that my listeners are for probably the most half, self employed inventive
professionals. One of the issues I’ve with a lot of the cash,
ideas and steering that is on the market, particularly for girls, is that
it is all about having a job and negotiating salaries. And I’ve a
large chip on my shoulder about that. So I’m consistently making an attempt to
translate all of it for the self employed girl who really is in a
place to do more than I believe she would be capable to do in a job.
Do you agree with that?

I might agree, I believe that there are nonetheless some very actual exterior
obstacles inside company America to ladies, you already know, ladies
who’re formidable, and who need to transfer up the ranks, and
particularly if we need to try this, and still have a household. So it is
not simply the socialization that we get, however it’s very actual obstacles
by way of office bias by way of ladies being paid and
promoted much less and by way of insurance policies that actually reinforce these
outdated assumptions. And I believe what you see and what we’re
seeing proper now’s that a lot of girls are leaving company
America and turning into solopreneurs entrepreneurs, small enterprise
house owners, as a result of there’s more freedom there. There’s more
risk, the sky’s kind of the restrict. And not solely that, however
what I noticed once I interviewed a lot of them is that we then
create the sort of firms that we want we had been a a part of. We
study from our expertise in company America, that is the place we
began. And we attempt to do higher after we create our personal

So I believe a lot of those ladies led firms are actually main
the best way in creating a more inclusive office tradition and a higher
stability between life and work and can in the end create a mannequin
that I hope the remainder of company America follows within the

So I could have stated this — I’m completely unemployable. First, it was
as a result of I simply do not like different individuals telling me what to do. Then,
finally, after now, 33 years of being self employed, I’m to a
level the place no person can match my wage and the potential for what I
can earn, the sky is the restrict. I imply, that’s the actuality if I
wished to give attention to that.

And but, this is the attention-grabbing factor: for my part, after 33
years supporting myself, I’m not married, I’ve no youngsters, I’ve a
canine, she’s not all that costly. I’ve a lot of freedom. And
but, it wasn’t till possibly 5 years in the past, that it occurred to me
that I actually acquired that I can care for myself. In different phrases, I
had been caring for myself for, for instance, 28 years. But nonetheless,
at the back of my thoughts, there was at all times this, “Oh, another person
ought to take duty for x.” There wasn’t even a individual
there. But there’s this fantasy that another person is meant to
care for me.

So once I take into consideration my previous, and rising up, it was definitely
my father who taught me — I keep in mind very clearly watching him pay
the payments, write these checks. He would let me write all the things however
his signature. And so I sort of discovered, and I keep in mind getting my
first checkbook. And but and I nonetheless didn’t get the message that I
will be capable to care for myself, although I used to be studying
a few of the sensible expertise.

So reply to that, should you would.

Yeah. And I’d be curious to listen to more about what occurred 5
years in the past to to shift your mindset round that. But to reply your
query, I believe and I skilled this myself rising up is,
there’s a lot of analysis round how dad and mom converse otherwise to
their ladies than to their boys, and the sorts of conversations they
have are inclined to middle more round budgeting and spending neatly. I
suppose you possibly can even embody paying the payments and managing a funds.
And they converse more to their boys about constructing credit score and
constructing wealth.

Those are essential expertise for everybody. And this isn’t to play
down the significance of with the ability to handle a funds. But managing
a funds is just one piece of it, proper? What I’m speaking about
with the breadwinning mindset is a lot more expansive. It’s not
nearly paying the payments, it is about asking your self, “what sort
of life do I need? And what do I have to do with the intention to afford

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You know, should you’re in a profession, it is asking, “what sort of
revenue? What profession path do I want with the intention to make the sort of
revenue to assist the life I need?” If you are beginning a enterprise,
it is asking, “how am I going to usher in the income I need to? And
how is that this enterprise going to permit me to have the life the
life-style that I need? And how am I going to construct wealth on the
aspect with the intention to be certain that I can cowl our midterm targets,
retirement, all of this stuff?”

I believe whenever you’re self employed, these are even greater
questions, as a result of it is actually in your shoulders, it is all in your
shoulders, paying taxes, saving for retirement, saving for midterm
targets. All of that actually rests in your shoulders. And so that you want
to be that a lot more proactive. But I believe most of us simply weren’t
introduced up to consider cash that method, to consider wealth
constructing, to consider what’s the profession path? Or what’s the
enterprise I need to begin that may generate the income to assist
the life that I need.

And so it typically takes a whereas earlier than that clicks into place. And
to your level, you already know, I do not suppose we’re like ready round
for Prince Charming to save lots of us anymore, essentially. But should you
have a look at the info on the market on ladies and cash: ladies make investments
much less and later and we save lower than males. We have
more bank card and scholar mortgage debt. And we have now decrease credit score
scores. I may go on, you already know, the gender wage hole is eighteen%. The
gender wealth cap is 68%.

So you have a look at these numbers, and it is onerous to not suppose, “are
we ready for somebody to rescue us,” as a result of we are sometimes not
making the sorts of monetary selections that may permit us to assist
ourselves all through our lives.

So there may be I believe there’s something very deep in our
unconscious. And a lot of that comes from the cultural
conditioning that we have now gotten, which has stated ladies’s revenue is
much less vital, which has stated the person would be the breadwinner,
which has stated the prescription is, get a job, get a profession, possibly
begin a small enterprise, get married, save a little for a wet day,
save for retirement — however it leaves out all of the many years in

So I might say we should not blame ourselves for that, as a result of a
lot of this actually is the best way that we have now been socialized to suppose
of ourselves in relation to cash. And it takes a actual aware
effort, if that’s the method that you’ve been introduced up. And it is
been strengthened by popular culture to acknowledge that after which shift
your mindset to consider, “I’m able to doing this, I’m a wealth
builder, I’m a breadwinner, I’m a profitable enterprise proprietor,” to
reinforce these beliefs and take some aware reconditioning

I’ve so many ideas. I’m simply gonna select one. Because I’ve
been pondering a lot in regards to the position of confidence in all of this,
and to say, “just shift your mindset to become a wealth builder,”
simpler stated than executed, clearly. And so what I’m occupied with is
what is the position of confidence? And in my very own private expertise,
it is taking actions and constructing expertise, that convey the boldness
that construct the boldness. It does not come from simply pondering a
sure method.

And in order that acquired me pondering, I used to be making an attempt to recollect once I put
my first $100, in my Fidelity SEP IRA. I could not even discover it on
the web site. It’s been that lengthy, however no person instructed me to do this. I
solely had two jobs and none of them had an IRA or any sort of
retirement plan related with it. So I do not even know why, at a
sure level, I made a decision to only begin placing $100 a month into a
SEP IRA. But I do keep in mind, I had a consumer, I used to be doing bookkeeping
for him, he was a psychiatrist. And he had Fidelity Contrafund, and
I used to be like, “Okay, nicely, he is making a living at that, I’m gonna do

And so I simply began placing $100 into Contrafund, and for
years and years it has been constructing.

So like, what’s that motion additionally? And the place is the boldness,
like, “Yes, I can construct a enterprise and save for retirement on the
similar time, not all of my cash has to go to the identical factor.” 100%,
I agree with you. And I believe to your level, after we simply begin
implementing these habits, even when we’re saving a little bit,
investing a little bit at a time, it begins to construct our
confidence. So one of the vital vital issues is simply to get in
the sport, is simply to start out investing, it is much less vital, what
you are investing in.

And I at all times say, in case you are feeling intimidated in regards to the inventory
market, and I believe a lot of individuals, women and men, nonetheless are, however
you see that more in ladies than in males, then simply to put money into
an S&P 500 index funds. That offers you publicity to 500 of
the largest firms that characterize more than 80% of the whole
market worth. So you are mainly in some ways, investing within the
market itself — one funding in a single fund over time that has
returned about 10% per 12 months on common, or seven to seven and a
half should you take inflation under consideration. And that’s a good fee of

So should you do nothing else, begin there. And I believe, to your
level, whenever you begin investing, and also you begin to see that cash
rising, it has a actually unbelievable impact in your psyche and your
confidence. Because there’s one thing about really seeing the
numbers and seeing your wealth develop, that may improve your
confidence, that may improve your sense of safety, all of those
emotional advantages to it. And we see this in Acorns, too.

So at Acorns, individuals can begin investing with their change
actually — we are going to you join your card and you utilize your
card and we spherical up your purchases, take the change, and when it
hits $5 we make investments that for you. And so individuals who begin there, and
there are a lot of people that do begin there, make investments about 30 to
$35 a month on common. So we’re speaking about round $400 a 12 months
however what we discover is that they begin there, after which after a few
months, normally when the market goes up which it has been for
probably the most half for you already know a number of months now, their confidence
builds and so they begin including more. So they add $5, $10. And then
they proceed to extend their contributions. I believe that is
really the best way it really works for a lot of individuals, if we’re a little
tentative about leaping in.

So a very powerful factor is to only get began and get in
the behavior so that each time you could have a new consumer, for instance,
you are mechanically pondering, “Okay, I have to take this quantity,
from no matter fee I get to place towards taxes, and I have to take
this quantity to place towards my investments.” A SEP IRA is a nice
automobile as a result of you possibly can deduct these contributions. So it helps you
in more than a method, you already know, you are already constructing your
wealth, and also you’re saving cash for retirement, however you are additionally
saving cash in your tax invoice.

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Excellent. I need to offer you more time to inform us more about
what’s within the ebook by way of the precise methods that individuals
can use and implement. So what would you say? Where else would you
go with that?

So I took the the breadwinning mindset, and I used it as a
filter to have a look at sort of each side of our funds. And one
place to start out is credit score. I believe anybody who’s ever taken a mortgage
out for his or her enterprise is nicely conscious of the significance of getting
good credit score, with the intention to get the very best phrases. But once more, the best way
that credit score has been marketed to everybody, however actually predominantly
to ladies, since we’re are inclined to make a lot of the client choices
and the family, is that credit score is a method to shut the hole between
the life which you can afford and the life that you really want. And that
is such a harmful message.

But what the breadwinner mindset would say is credit score
as a method to get the very best phrases on the mortgage that it would be best to
put money into one thing that you just suppose will improve in worth. So for
instance, your bank cards as a method to construct your credit score
rating, in order that whenever you get a mortgage or enterprise mortgage, you will get
the very best phrases.

I’ve some analysis within the ebook that exhibits that in case you have the
highest vary credit score scores and might get the very best phrases, that may
prevent over $42,000 over the course of a conventional 30 12 months
mortgage mortgage for a mean priced residence. That is important when
you concentrate on constructing wealth and the sort of cash which you can
put aside $42,000 makes a large distinction, particularly should you’re
in a position to make investments that cash versus paying it in curiosity.

Same goes for a enterprise mortgage. So having a increased credit score rating
really makes a large distinction. You may leverage credit score
playing cards to really earn a living as soon as you’re snug paying off
your bank card invoice each month, you can begin utilizing bank cards
to get money again to get rewards factors. You know, there are
implausible offers on a few of these enterprise bank cards. But it is a
totally different method of credit score. It’s actually like you do not need
to pay for the privilege of utilizing the cardboard. You need to leverage
credit score to really earn a living and construct wealth. So that is one

The different space, once more, is investing from day one as a
method to lower your dependence in case you are in a common job, to
lower your dependence on paycheck. And constructing wealth on the
aspect is a method to offer you that cushion that would permit you to
depart a company job and begin your individual enterprise.

In reality, final night time, I did an occasion with Luminary and Kate, who
is the founder and CEO of Luminary, was telling me that she had
been investing for the purpose of getting a little one. They had been going
by way of a lot of fertility therapies and he or she had saved apart all
this cash and so they ended up not having a little one. But she had
all this cash, so she used the cash to start out Luminary.

So it is actually occupied with constructing wealth to assist the
targets that you just might need sooner or later and to provide the freedom
of alternative. Right. And that is a very totally different method of it.
Same with financial savings. I imply, I believe we regularly consider financial savings and
it has been kind of pitched us as like saving for an upcoming
buy like a costly purse or a getaway with our
girlfriends, which isn’t to say that these aren’t fantastic
issues to save lots of for too.

But financial savings is a lot more than that. It’s like having financial savings
is having peace of thoughts, it is supplying you with alternative. It’s realizing for
instance, in case you have financial savings, should you all of the sudden get a tax invoice, if
you underestimated what you should pay, having that financial savings there
offers you that safety that you will be okay. If you are
beginning a enterprise and oh my god — the pandemic. I imply,
some individuals misplaced 50 – 80% of their income within the pandemic. Having
financial savings lets you journey these instances and so your small business will likely be
okay and you will be okay. So it is so vital to only take into consideration
all these totally different areas of your funds as actually supporting the
life you need and supplying you with as many selections as you possibly can have within the


Actually the final line of your TED Talk is the one which I instructed
you I used to be going to be quoting you instantly, as a result of it has a
corollary in my work.

So you stated, “There is nothing more empowering than having the ability
to convey the long run you need to life. And to know you could have the
financial savings and the wherewithal to stroll away from any scenario you
don’t need.”

So I translated that to, “There is nothing more empowering than
with the ability to convey the enterprise you need to life. And to know that
you could have the advertising and marketing in place, and the pipeline, and the
wherewithal to stroll away from any consumer or challenge you do not
need.” What do you consider that?

I really like that. I really like that a lot. I actually do. I believe that is so
vital. And the ebook just isn’t essentially written for
entrepreneurs and small enterprise house owners. But I believe the teachings
apply. And should you translate the breadwinning mindset to an
entrepreneurial mindset, it truly is having the boldness that
you are able to do this, that you’ve the talents that you’ve the
pipeline, and you’ve got the advertising and marketing capabilities to climate these

And I imply actually, there’s nothing more highly effective than being
in a position to say no to a consumer, to have the ability to stroll away from a consumer
who’s poisonous. I imply, I’ve talked to so many individuals who’ve
companies and really feel like after they’re beginning, they should put up
with a lot. But as they begin to construct their enterprise, construct
their wealth, they are saying, “This is an incredible, that is an incredible
second for me once I can say no to a consumer who’s simply a ache in my
butt and I do not need to should deal with them.”

That’s a fantastic feeling to be in that builds confidence. That
by itself, I believe, can construct confidence. Yeah. Cuz take into consideration how
you will present up the following time you are negotiating with a consumer when
you already know which you can stroll away. I imply, that is the primary rule of
negotiation, proper? Yep, the best method to negotiate is
realizing in your thoughts which you can stroll away, and it offers you so
a lot leverage in a dialog and negotiation.

Alright, my final query for half one among our dialog. I believe
a lot of individuals need to speak about speaking about cash, as a result of
that is one thing I educate, I’ve a new presentation, really, I’m
giving a model of it tonight, referred to as “Show Me The
Money: Learn to like the cash dialog,” as a result of I believe
one of many methods individuals, not simply ladies, women and men I see, get in
their very own method is simply by not bringing it up within the first place. So
do you could have any ideas from the ebook or from your individual expertise
about speaking about cash?

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Well, primary is speak about it. To your level, I believe that we
typically really feel disgrace, or embarrassment, or no matter it’s, particularly
when we have now questions on cash, make investments or issues that we
suppose we should know. But in actuality, you already know, only a few individuals
on this nation get a actually strong monetary training. It’s not
a part of the curriculum in most colleges. So a lot of individuals have a
lot of questions nicely into their profession. And so there is no disgrace in
asking questions. So that is vital.

But the opposite side of this, particularly in case you have your individual
enterprise, is to speak to different enterprise house owners and get a sense of
what they’re charging and have these conversations. I imply, it is
kind of the equal, you already know, in our careers, when I’ve talked
to different individuals about what they’re incomes, what their revenue is,
and boy are these eye opening conversations.

And it is so highly effective. I used to be simply pondering yesterday about a string
and one among my community networking teams about getting paid to
converse. I had been making an attempt to determine what to cost and that string
was eye opening. The vary was like zero to 10, on what individuals had been
charging, and it was not essentially a reflection of expertise, or
the quantity of instances you’ve got spoken or your platform. It was actually a
lot of instances about what you requested for. And having read that whole
string, now I do know this, this spectrum, the vary, and I understand how
to have that dialog, I felt so significantly better outfitted to
negotiate the following discuss that I used to be requested to present. That was vastly
highly effective.

I’m pondering of 1 pal particularly and I embody her in
the ebook. She holds these workshops to assist others run robust PR
agency, to assist different enterprise house owners with negotiations. But
even you already know, she did some work for me and he or she stated, “I hope you
do not thoughts, however she’s like, honey, I acquired to receives a commission. Like I acquired
payments. I’ll offer you a pal low cost. But I acquired to receives a commission.”

And I believed I might by no means ask you to do work and never pay you.
You know, however I believe you possibly can have these conversations, even in a
case like that the place you are working with a pal, and so they say, I
love you, however I acquired to receives a commission.

Well, my tackle the family and friends low cost is they need to pay
more as a result of they understand how a lot you are value and so they need to
assist you.

I instructed her that too. I stated I’m keen to pay full value,
more than keen since you’re precisely proper, they know more than
anybody how proficient you’re and they’ll need to assist that. I
fully agree.

But I additionally suppose it’s simply so vital to recollect, you want
to receives a commission, you should receives a commission what you are value, there is no method
round it. And there’s nothing unsuitable with saying, “I need to make a
lot of cash,”

I positively need to make a lot of cash, I’m very open about
it, I need to make a lot of cash so I can have the impression I need
to have on the earth, so I can have the life I need. And, you already know,
I believe a lot of instances, we do not speak about that sufficient. There’s
this bizarre disgrace round saying, particularly as a girl, that you just
need to make a lot of cash. And we have to recover from that.

And I might say — after which I’ll get off my horse about
this — But after we speak about enterprise capital, I’ve talked to
so many feminine entrepreneurs, and so they inform me that one of many
issues that drives them nuts after they’re elevating cash is that
there’s virtually this concept of like, it is charity to place cash into a
feminine led firm proper now. It’s like, “we should do it to assist
feminine entrepreneurs.”

That is such BS! Invest within the firm as a result of we are going to make
cash and we are going to make you cash. That’s why you put money into a
firm. We’re not a charity. And we have now each intention of constructing
a lot of cash. And so it is even reshaping the dialog round
that to love, the explanation it is best to put money into a feminine led enterprise
is as a result of we have now a increased fee of success. And we’re simply as
formidable and proficient as male founders. Not as a result of there’s some
quota to fill, or since you really feel like oh, I have to assist
feminine founders, however since you really see the worth in what
we’re doing.

All proper, that might be the proper place to place the bookmark. But
I did consider one different query that I need to ask you
is: Do you could have a favourite feminine private finance “guru” that
you suggest individuals hearken to or read?

Well, it is onerous to read her, however she does have a weblog, however my mother
is my, she actually is my hero. We discuss on a regular basis about cash
and investments. She will name me when she makes a good funding
and makes cash. So we have now that sort of relationship the place she
says, I’m so glad I can name you and inform you about this cash I
made immediately with Baidu or Amazon or no matter. 

She has a background and a PhD in accounting. And she
really takes the time to read all these stories that firms
put out and search for alternatives. That just isn’t one thing that the majority
individuals have the time to do, however I love her for more than that.
She is self taught and actually began managing the funds after
my dad and mom had been divorced. And she acquired remarried. And has did not
begin fairly from scratch, however virtually and has constructed a actually
spectacular portfolio in shares and bonds and in actual property. So I
have a lot admiration for what she’s been in a position to do. And she
additionally offers simply extremely strong recommendation. She is the one that
takes the time to analysis all the things. And she’s at

She has a weblog, and she writes largely for individuals who
are close to or in retirement. That’s her focus proper now as a result of she
is retired. She was an accounting professor for a few years.

So attention-grabbing. And simply funnily my mom additionally spends what sounds
like all of her spare time studying all these stories and watching
the inventory market. She does not have an accounting diploma, really,
so she can also be self taught, and I believe has been doing it most likely
for the final 10 years. But that is what she appears to have devoted
her life to — is instructing herself care for herself —
she’s now in her 80s.

That is superb. That’s so inspiring. And I believe they might get
alongside very nicely.

Yes. All proper. So inform the individuals the place they will discover you on-line,
additionally in your ebook.

Sure. Well, I’m at I’m on all of the social
platforms and be at liberty to achieve out. And the ebook is “Think
like a breadwinner” and it is accessible anyplace you purchase books.

Awesome. I can not wait to get mine. Okay, so thanks, Jenn. And we
will certainly should have a half two. That sounds nice.

Transcribed by

Jerry Gordon

About Jerry Gordon

Webmaster, nature and tech lover. Jerry manages the day-to-day operations at DigiToolsadvisor. He loves enjoying his free time, but most of all, trying new tools to master.