Mar 13, 2020

Your Sherpa Your Guide To Teaching Children About Money

At first, I told people my mission was to help them become financially literate. Eventually, I realized that merely mentioning the term ‘financial literacy’ can put people to sleep, as they perceive it to be tedious, academic, and all about math.  It then became clear that my true mission is to show people that financial literacy is a means to an end, a tool, to achieve better life outcomes. Don’t we all want better life outcomes? like the independence and freedom to enjoy and care for our kids, not to be dependent on our kids when we are old, to be able to give to others, and in general be able to take control of our lives so that we can unlock our potential.

Another realization I had was the importance of delivering age-specific messages:

For a very young audience it is best to motivate them to want to save money by showing them how money can grow.

For a high school student, the message needs to be clear that they are making huge life decisions, even at this seemingly young age, such as choosing an initial career path and selecting a college.  Many of their peers are making purely emotional decisions and choosing colleges they can’t afford and careers they are not passionate about or do not generate the earning power needed to pay off college debt.

For soon-to-be college graduates or anyone relatively new to the workforce, a key message is that it is their responsibility to embrace change and keep investing in themselves to stay employed and employable in our changing world.  And for those making ‘real money’ for the first time, they need to know a realistic method to make daily decisions to save and build wealth. The approach I advocate does not use tedious budgets but rather focuses on the mindset and daily lifestyle choices needed to succeed.

And lastly, for parents, they need to know that they can team up with us to get these critical messages to their kids.  Plus, and they don’t need to admit this to anyone, they will surely learn more themselves and benefit financially (e.g. by avoiding accumulating college debt themselves which could torpedo their retirement dreams).

Since people learn in different ways, I developed a full platform approach including a book (typically for parents, at Your Financial Sherpa), downloadable audio files (typically for students and young adults), speaking engagements, and through third party partnerships.  

Again, financial literacy is a tool to achieve better life outcomes.  Let me help you see the NEED to save, motivate you to WANT to save, ensure you remain in the POSITION to save by avoiding debt or underemployment, and teach you HOW to save with an emphasis on the mindset and daily lifestyle choices needed to succeed.

Guest Author Jeff Tyburski worked as an engineer, analyst, and portfolio manager for a combined 33 years. He created and led an internal school to teach new analysts and is the president of a non-profit helping aspiring entrepreneurs in Africa. The analyst in him identified the problems solved in the book. The engineer created the framework. The teacher, mentor, and parent deliver the message.

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