Liberty's National Women's Financial Advisory Council taps into collective power of women

26 November 2021 Liberty

The National Women Financial Advisory Council, whose mandate is to elevate women in this field is gaining traction, thanks to more experienced women advisers lending their voice to the council.

Launched by insurer Liberty in August this year, the Council is an industry first, and the long-term goal is to attract more women in the field and retain existing talent.

Liberty Group has an adviser force of about 2042, of which only 24% are female advisers.

"This disparity is something that has not gone unnoticed. Diversity remains a key issue across the industry. According to Statistics SA, the numbers of women continue to grow in the workforce, as does their spending power, yet they continue to remain behind men in this regard.

This forum is one example of how we want to be part of this acceleration," says Liberty's Executive for Omni Channel Engagements and Sales, Bongani Khulu.

While the creation of a women's forum is a step in the direction, a diverse adviser force has been a priority for insurer, Liberty, and this is to further the course, he adds.
In the advisory business, as is the case in other careers, the reality is that women tend to be a lot more loaded with extra family responsibility than their male counterparts, and this may be some of the reasons that weigh women in this sector down.

The forum will support and grow existing talent, coach existing leaders to support women in advisory positions more effectively, establish a mentoring programme for new recruits, help with business development approaches, and attract and retain female clients.

"We want to continue with recruitment efforts to acquire new advisers, but more importantly to fully understand these advisers and engage with them more meaningfully to arrest the attrition rate and drive retention," Khulu explains.

There is a broad understanding that female advisers do bring a different perspective to financial planning. From one perspective this could be seen as a more family orientated view to planning, as well as an understanding of the unique issues faced by women in society and business.

The power of a woman adviser is both enormous and underrated. The idea of this forum is to address these issues that are unique to South African women and explore ways female advisers can really make a difference, to both their clients and to other women who want to enter this industry," Khulu says.

"We’re not just driving the employment of women advisers – we are learning a new language of thinking and adding diverse layers of perspective, skills and experience to retain and empower our women advisers.

While this initiative is meant to make the industry more representative, Liberty is calling on industry peers to jump in and be part of this forum. " Men are most welcome, in fact, we need to show up," says Khulu.

Anyone wanting to know more or get in touch with the forum can find out more information here.

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