On November 1, 2023, we held our annual client conference, THINK, at RattleSnake Point Golf Club in Milton, Ontario, with the latest from the Cowan team and industry experts on topics and themes that matter most in group benefits today. Shelly Redwood, Principal Consultant in Pension and Retirement Consulting at Cowan Insurance Group shared invaluable insights on winning strategies for supporting financial wellness in volatile times.
Shelly addressed financial wellness as a crucial but often overlooked aspect of overall well-being. While people prioritize physical and mental well-being, financial wellness tends to be neglected. Financial security is not just something to wish for; it is something to plan for. Her talk focused on empowering employers and employees to prioritize and plan for financial well-being.
A key takeaway from Shelly's presentation was the assurance that, as an employer, it's not your responsibility to ensure employees retire wealthy or comfortably. Instead, your role is to equip them with the tools and capabilities needed for a secure financial future. Shelly emphasized that overlooking financial wellness can lead to presenteeism, affecting productivity and increasing absences. A group retirement savings plan is a crucial benefit that employees value when identifying new employment or deciding on changing employers. It also helps with employee attraction, retention, and productivity by increasing an employee's ability to focus on the job.
Shelly also delved into the gender disparity in financial decision-making. Traditionally, women exhibit less confidence than men, leading to a reluctance to take risks in financial decision-making. This hesitancy can result in lower returns on investments over time. Shelly stressed the importance of addressing these disparities to promote financial well-being for all.
Market volatility, Shelly explained, is a recurring challenge. Her advice? Portfolio diversification and resilience during market fluctuations can enhance overall financial well-being. Shelly highlights taking advantage of buying more units when the markets are down, which increases the number of units held. This positions individuals to benefit from market rebounds, boosting overall account value.
Overall, Shelly Redwood's insights provided a roadmap for employees and employers to navigate the complexities of financial wellness. By acknowledging the importance of planning, addressing gender disparities, and staying the course during market volatility, Shelly's expertise offers a blueprint for a more financially secure future.
Put financial wellness at the top of the priority list for your employees. Contact us today!