Uncensored Money Season Five: I Wish We Didn’t Celebrate International Women’s Day.

Melissa Browne: Ex-Accountant, Ex-Financial Advisor, Ex-Working Till I Drop, Now Serial Entrepreneur & Author, Financial Wellness Advocate, Living a Life by Design | 04/03/2024


Show Notes

This week is International Women’s Day, and you might think with the theme of Count Her In: Accelerating Gender Equality Through Economic Empowerment Mel would rejoice, talking about how important this theme is. In this episode instead, Mel talks about why she is tired of International Women’s Day, why she wishes we put as much thought into it as we do International Men’s Day, as well as some simple things you can do this week to recognise it.

Books and resources mentioned in this episode

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Hey everyone. I'm Mel Brown. I'm an ex-accountant and ex-financial advisor, so I have the theory, but I also have the life experience. I'm now financially independent in my own right after coming back from less than nothing in my early thirties. I want this podcast to be like a chat with your girlfriends about money. My aim is to help you discover why you're behaving the way you are with money, to suggest new ways you might behave that are a better fit for you, and to increase your financial literacy and financial confidence. I hope it inspires challenges, educates and empowers you with how you do money. So let's get into it. Welcome to Uncensored Money.

This week it's International Women's Day and you might think that with the theme this year of Count Her In: Accelerating Gender Equality through economic empowerment, that Lawsie and I would get together and do a big chat around how we can have that and how important the theme is. And you know what? We will absolutely chat about that next week when we are going to talk through the stats that were released last week around gender equality and what that means for you. But today I just wanted to do a short brief message because I don't know about you, but I'm freaking tired of International Women's Day. I am angry about International Women's Day and I'm gonna explain why. And I hope that by the end of our really short time together that you are kind of angry and off too because here's some stats to help you on your way.

In 2023 61 women were killed in Australia. In 2023, the WGEA average that is total gender pay gap was 21.7%. So to put that bluntly, for every $1 on average, a man makes a woman earns 78 cents in the dollar. Or to put it another way, women in Australia are earning on average $26,393 less than men a year. The superannuation gap or retirement gap is around 24%. And women on average will retire with $136,000 less in superannuation. And I'm sorry, but I am so freaking tired of talking about this because the truth, I don't want an International Women's Day. I don't want a day where corporations and government can feel good about doing something 'cause they roll out pink cupcakes and a speaker for their little women. I don't want an International Women's Day. I don't want a day where corporations can feel good about these numbers while doing very little about it.

I have been to two decades worth of breakfasts and brunches, lunches and dinners, and we are still talking about all the same issues today that we were 20 years ago. I'm tired of it. I'm angry about it and I'm over it. I mean, yes, I know that there is an International Men's Day, but we don't celebrate it because the truth is every day is International Men's Day. Now I love the men in my life dearly, but there is an advantage that is received simply because of the gender you were born with. The truth is, I wish we didn't have an International Women's Day. I wish we glossed over it in the same way that we do the International Men's Day because I wish we were no longer talking about these issues that we no longer had these stats. Now what are some simple things you can do?

'Cause I don't just want to <laugh> give you my anger, vomit and not tell you about some things that you can do. So here are four things that you can do this week. One is don't expect corporations to stand up not properly. You need to stand up for yourself. How you do that is by sharing salaries, insisting on transparency, by asking for what you are worth, by going for positions when you are 50% ready by asking the men you work with when they're taking paternity leave. So it's, it's demanding the same rights for you. In the show notes, I'm gonna put a link to how to ask for a pay rise cause Women just simply don't ask for it well.

I don't know about you, but sometimes I wish there was an easy way, a silver bullet, a magical unicorn, a fairy godmother ready to grant me three wishes. I mean, think of all the miracle diets, fitness fads, promising a six pack in six weeks, or finance bros promising riches by following this easy formula. Do you believe a word of it?Well, the part that longs for a quick fix might be taken in, but you are smarter than that. Personally, what I believe in is consistency, educating myself, finding an expert to help me, surrounding myself with a community who are going to motivate me to keep going and make me feel like I can do it because they're doing it too or are further down the road than I am. That's exactly what we've created inside the My Financial Adulting Plan. If you feel like you're on top of your finances, you have a plan for this year that you're super comfortable with and have everything you need to make that happen, then just ignore this ad. But for the rest of you, make sure you check out my life-changing 12 week course or for less than the price of a cup of coffee a day. Head to the show notes to join the wait list for the next round. Or you might be lucky enough to find that the doors are open and you can join now.

The second thing is don't expect governments to stand up. Ask your partner to share your care. You know, ask your partner to super split with you when you are off work and offer it back in return if they're sharing care. But don't expect governments to do that for you. Don't expect corporations to do something about the super pay gap. That is how you start to fix that for yourself. If you are in business, pay yourself super. It is not selfish to be looking after future you. Price appropriately. Stop using words like just baby and only again, I'm gonna put links for free downloads I have for all of these things. So pricing's an issue you have in your business and then I've got a, a freebie for you. If you are not sure how much super you are potentially missing out of 'cause you had a career break, I'm gonna put a link for you.

There's being angry and there's having knowledge, and I want you to have the knowledge you need so that you can stand up for yourself. If you're a speaker, please refuse to speak for free on International Women's Day. Small corporations, large corporations, women's groups, all of these over my time in business have been guilty of asking myself and other speakers to speak for free. Some of the biggest women's groups do not pay their speakers and it's not okay. You know, I am speaking for a small business this year on International Women's Day itself. She paid me and she paid me my full market rate When I explained to her that I was gonna get booked multiple times on that day or I had the ability to, so unfortunately I had to charge the market rate. She goes, sure, no problem, I'll figure it out. You know, last year it was a medium sized business, they paid me my full rate.

It's standing up for what you are worth and insisting that others see the value in that too. You cannot have a theme about accelerating gender equality through economic empowerment and not pay your speakers appropriately. And I've had arguments with global organisations this year where they've said, yeah, we didn't budget for that. Like, well, you should. It's simply not okay. This International Women's Day. Oh, and again, for if you're a speaker and you're being asked this week, I'll put a freebie in the show notes. It's gonna be lots of freebies this week where if you you'll have email scripts that you can use, not just on International Women's Day, but throughout the year. And if you're being asked to speak for free, just copy and paste my templates. But this International Women's Day, if you are not angry, you are not paying attention.

Whether this is your first International Women's Day that you've celebrated or your 30th. I want us to be so dismissive about International Women's Day in the same way that we are dismissive about International Men's Day because we simply don't need it because it's normalised that of course we should have equality. Of course, we should have equal pay. Of course, we should have there should not be a super gap. Of course, women should not be most at risk at if you are over 55 of homelessness. Of course, that's not okay. We need to start putting our money in where our mouth is. We need to start getting angry and we need to start taking action. This International Women's Day. I'm gonna be speaking at some extraordinary events, but you know what? I wish I wasn't. I wish that we weren't talking about this. I wish it was simply another day because I wish that these were not issues that women were facing.

If you enjoyed this episode, we would love it if you subscribed and give us a review, then make sure you come and play with me on Insta. I'm at @melbrowne.money Remember there's an E on the end of Browne. I'm one of those fancy Browne's, and don't forget to check out the show notes for even more ways you can work with me to transform your finances.



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