Rebel Human Resources Podcast

Episode 39: Employee Financial Wellness with Liz Davidson

April 13, 2021 Kyle Roed / Liz Davidson Season 1 Episode 39
Rebel Human Resources Podcast
Episode 39: Employee Financial Wellness with Liz Davidson
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Rebel Human Resources Podcast
Episode 39: Employee Financial Wellness with Liz Davidson
Apr 13, 2021 Season 1 Episode 39
Kyle Roed / Liz Davidson

Join Kyle as he speaks with the founder and CEO of Financial Finesse, Liz Davidson.

Liz’s rebel story includes leaving a lucrative role as a partner in a hedge fund in 1999 to go out on her own and literally invent the idea of Financial Wellness as an employee benefit; turning down interested buyers and investors because she wasn’t willing to compromise on her mission of providing *100% unbiased* financial coaching to as many employees as possible; and, this coming April, launching a virtual financial coach that flies in the face of other profit-at-all-costs “robo advisors” because it is a complement to — not a replacement for — our human coaches.

Over the years, Liz has helped HR leadership at many of the Fortune 1000 (Ally, CVS Health, Nestle, McKinsey, etc.) and other well-known organizations (NFL Players Association, Great Place to Work, etc.) to empower their employees to make the most of their pay and benefits, reduce financial stress, and achieve financial security.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/lizdavidsonff/
https://www.financialfinesse.com/
info@financialfinesse.com 

Rebel HR is a podcast for HR professionals and leaders of people who are ready to make some disruption in the world of work.

Subscribe today on your favorite podcast player!  

We'll be discussing topics that are disruptive to the world of work and talk about new and different ways to approach solving those problems.

Follow Rebel HR Podcast at:

www.rebelhumanresources.com
https://twitter.com/rebelhrguy
https://www.facebook.com/rebelhrpodcast
www.kyleroed.com
https://www.linkedin.com/in/kyle-roed/

We love to hear from our listeners!  Send us questions or comments at kyleroed@gmail.com

Rebel On, HR Rebels!

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/rebelhumanresources)

Show Notes Transcript

Join Kyle as he speaks with the founder and CEO of Financial Finesse, Liz Davidson.

Liz’s rebel story includes leaving a lucrative role as a partner in a hedge fund in 1999 to go out on her own and literally invent the idea of Financial Wellness as an employee benefit; turning down interested buyers and investors because she wasn’t willing to compromise on her mission of providing *100% unbiased* financial coaching to as many employees as possible; and, this coming April, launching a virtual financial coach that flies in the face of other profit-at-all-costs “robo advisors” because it is a complement to — not a replacement for — our human coaches.

Over the years, Liz has helped HR leadership at many of the Fortune 1000 (Ally, CVS Health, Nestle, McKinsey, etc.) and other well-known organizations (NFL Players Association, Great Place to Work, etc.) to empower their employees to make the most of their pay and benefits, reduce financial stress, and achieve financial security.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/lizdavidsonff/
https://www.financialfinesse.com/
info@financialfinesse.com 

Rebel HR is a podcast for HR professionals and leaders of people who are ready to make some disruption in the world of work.

Subscribe today on your favorite podcast player!  

We'll be discussing topics that are disruptive to the world of work and talk about new and different ways to approach solving those problems.

Follow Rebel HR Podcast at:

www.rebelhumanresources.com
https://twitter.com/rebelhrguy
https://www.facebook.com/rebelhrpodcast
www.kyleroed.com
https://www.linkedin.com/in/kyle-roed/

We love to hear from our listeners!  Send us questions or comments at kyleroed@gmail.com

Rebel On, HR Rebels!

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/rebelhumanresources)

Liz Davidson:

the traditional paradigm has been let's share all our benefits with people and talk about how great they are but the problem is that it can be overwhelming that and of itself is stressful if you're a large company and you have you know dozens of benefits and they're you know you're you're sharing all this technical information it's like okay i don't where do i start how does this relate to me what financial wellness does is provides a multi channel platform as an employee benefit where essentially employees get unlimited financial coaching

Kyle Roed:

this is the rebel hr podcast appear professional looking for innovative thought provoking information in the world of human resources this is the right podcast for you revelon hr rebels alright rebel hr listeners thank you so much for joining us i'm excited about our conversation today with liz davidson liz is ceo and founder of financial finesse what a great name a los angeles based firm providing millions of americans with access to unbiased financial guidance through workplace financial wellness solutions welcome to the show liz

Liz Davidson:

thank you for having me

Kyle Roed:

well i'm really excited to dive into this this topic of financial wellness as an employee benefit and it's an area admittedly i don't know a whole lot about so i'm curious to just learn a little bit more about financial wellness and how did you get into the financial wellness benefit game

Liz Davidson:

got it what's funny because you know financial wellness now you're kind of hearing everywhere it's very pervasive even you know on commercials large financial institutions everyone's in the financial wellness business and you know it's it's you know i want to make a really important distinction here done right when we look at financial wellness we're looking at it from the impact on the participant from being able to provide completely unconflicted personalized guidance that's in the best interest of an employee to get them to a place where they are financially stable so you know their debt is under control they have insurance in place where needed they have an emergency fund so you know they can they're resilient they can weather a shock they have their goals mapped out a lot of people don't you know they have goals in a loose way but they know i want to buy a home you know this time period i want to send my children to college i want to do you know retire at this time period and they are on track based on what they're looking at in terms of timeframe they're on track to reach those goals and then you know their wealth is protected to the extent they have accrued wealth does not mean you're financially secure but it means you are in a position where the things you are doing day in and day out are contributing to your financial security and it's the only sustainable way because think of lottery winners for example if the only sustainable path to financial security because once you're financially secure you have to maintain that security right and not make decisions that jeopardize it so companies are increasingly recognizing that employees are so you know very financially stressed both you know market volatility which we saw at the beginning of COVID just the uncertainty of life the fact that benefits now you have more funding that you have to do as an employee more decisions to make and the traditional paradigm has been let's share all our benefits with people and talk about how great they are but the problem is that it can be overwhelming that and of itself is stressful if you're a large company and you have you know dozens of benefits and they're you know you're you're sharing all this technical information it's like okay i don't where do i start how does this relate to me what financial wellness does is provides a multi channel platform as an employee benefit where essentially employees get unlimited financial coaching through all even mediums digital phone based you know app based through webcasts they get unlimited personal financial coaching to make the best possible decisions around how to maximize their comp and their benefits so all of a sudden the benefits are really truly benefits because they're they're fueling my family's financial future or my financial future as opposed to an spd that i'm trying to navigate like what exactly does this mean how much can i take out as alone how you know it all of that

Kyle Roed:

so yeah yeah every time somebody asked me for summary plan description and i'm like you sure you want the 90 page summary plan description document well yeah i just want to see okay here you go have at it that's good luck with that

Liz Davidson:

for insomnia

Kyle Roed:

yeah and then there's so much i mean there's so in this is you know coming from an hr standpoint like there's so much legales that you have to put in all that stuff it's like you have to have a juris doctorate just to even understand what is this sentence say and what does it actually mean and then trying to try to work through you know a scenario where an employee has a question as an hr professional you're like i don't know

Liz Davidson:

yes and as an hr professional you have to be very careful right about not crossing that line into giving advice you know especially around the retirement plan and things like that so it's you know some of this is is really a tool to the hr professionals can leverage to the extent they have employees that are confused about benefits complaining about benefits asking for their advice what are you asking what do you do in your 401k plan you know so that they can do the same thing but they may be in a different situation so you know it's it's it's also a you know a good resource from that standpoint both to legally protect hr but also to just you know be able to to refer to a resource that's trusted that they've implemented as an employee benefit and tell the story of look how committed we are to your financial success we've actually contracted with the firm that this is all they do to help employees become you know more financially well and financially secure so it's a it's we hear all the time it's one of the few things they get thank yous for and i don't you know i you know i don't know if that's something you find but often in hr especially in retirement there's a lot of oh this is wrong or i don't understand this or why aren't we yeah

Kyle Roed:

yeah we don't get a lot of thank yous on in the context of our benefits package even if we feel like we've done a good thing relatively thankless that's fair but i do think you know it's such an important topic and you know the events of 2020 and the the market crash and subsequent like crazy rebound and just the volatility you know we certainly got a lot of questions related to the 401k plan you know i had people who the minute the market crashed we're you know saying hey i want to get all my money out you know you know okay that yeah be the recommended path forward here you know and and then we had you know people who wanted to put a bunch of money in when it when it crashed and you know those kinds of things and but then the the other thing that i've seen throughout my career so you know little context of my career so you know i graduated college in the in the early 2000s and when i came out one of the first big events was the great recession yeah and i and i i ran across people who were planning to retire within a year or two and they couldn't and then now just over the last year i had an employee who when the when the crash happened they were planning to retire and they also didn't and you know it's just to think that you know your life plan could be completely disrupted by market volatility is kind of scary and shocking and you know i mean i think it should be a call to action if you're so worried about the market going down 40% and you're two years from retirement maybe you need to reevaluate

Liz Davidson:

you know you make a really good point which is you know i uncertainty i think is only going to increase both in terms of the market but just even life right i mean you know how how many times have we heard you know in the last 10 years kind of this you know once in a lifetime weather conditions but yet it happens every once in a lifetime anymore you know what i mean yeah and

Kyle Roed:

you mean like snow during spring break

Liz Davidson:

it's so so i think with the uncertainty and the pace of change accelerating and everything else it becomes more important to focus on the things you personally can control and to be resilient because that's how you protect yourself is making sure that you have you know liquid assets that you know the risks you are taking on you are comfortable with them and you're just dying Then and, and, and buttoned down, so to speak. So if you know if there's a decline, yeah might impact your balance on paper, but it's not going to change your life. And it can even be for those that are well ahead of the curve, it can even be an opportunity to invest more, again, that gets, you know, day see, if you're very close to retirement, but you have more flexibility than more resilience, you have an, you know, understanding that is, obviously considerably more difficult at lower income levels than higher ones, and so forth. So everyone's situation is different. And it's something similar working out, you know, you might start with where you're at, but you can always improve, and, you know, the more you improve, you start developing really a different lifestyle and mentality and

Kyle Roed:

fitness level. Absolutely. Absolutely. So, so you use that term a couple times. So financial fitness, do you consider this something where somebody goes and gets, you know, gets a physical trainer, so to speak, or I don't know, if you want to call it an investment trainer or something like that, they get a trainer, and they educate them? And then they kind of let them go off and do their own plan? Or how does how does that work with the benefit?

Liz Davidson:

You know, you you set it, it's um, so the benefit has multiple components, there's the financial wellness assessment, which we look at is kind of a scale. So think of it as stepping on the scale, and kind of, you know, I know that feeling can be anxiety producing, but seeing where you're at. From a financial wellness perspective, this is different than financial planning, this is really understanding your habits and behaviors based on your situation. And your goals are, how are you the things you're doing going to impact you in the future and kind of giving you a score based on that? Then from there, you get very, you know, tangible, personalized next steps based on your situation. That's where the coaching comes into play is, you know, similar to a personal trainer, right? You step on the scale, and, you know, with them, you probably do measurements and bodies with us, but, but then they have a starting point, right? And then they talk to you about Okay, so what do you want? What do you want to do here? Like, you know, is this across this situation financially? Or is it a situation where I just want to be healthier, I want to be under less stress, I want to feel like I'm progressing. But I'm, I don't want to do extreme things that, you know, are going to deprive my current lifestyle, he says, just figuring out where are people and what do they want? And then how do you work with them on an ongoing basis. And I think the best physical trainers, you know, very similarly, really tailored to their client, you know, if someone is, you know, really passionate about certain types of exercise, and they're more likely to stick to those, okay, let's make sure, you know, we're integrating that so that you, you know, this is fun for you, and you're making progress and feeling good, as opposed to, oh, I have that appointment again. You know, I'm going to come up with any reason that, you know, I'm not able to, I'm gonna have to cancel it, you know, so. So it's really the same kind of model of, you know, what has really worked well in the physical wellness movement. And, you know, the trainer, in this case, our financial coaches are its accountability, rights and accountability partner that you respect, it's on your side, but is going to, to really help you stay honest with yourself and, you know, make sure you are progressing because it's easy to go to a workshop or webcast, get all these ideas, maybe next couple of days, you might get started and then like,

Kyle Roed:

been there. Yeah, I'm gonna do that. I'm gonna do that tomorrow, I got that I'm gonna write that down. And then that sticky note gets stuck on the, you know, whatever stuck in your pocket, then you wash it, wash your jeans, and then you lose the sticky note.

Liz Davidson:

Exactly. I used to have new year's resolutions when I was much younger, where, you know, I'm a crazy disorganized entrepreneur with no physical organization and I was like, okay, we're gonna, I'm gonna be clean and neat and organized all year, well, the first week of January that would kind of wear off and, and so that's another, you know, small point to make which is, a lot of this is about really being real with yourself and setting goals and establishing habits that that you can stick to and you enjoy and then you can build upon rather than saying you know if i am someone that really loves life experiences and that gives me a lot of joy i'm going to go i'm going to completely deprive myself in the interest of being more financially well well then you'll crash and burn and do something very expensive just to get your fix right so it's it's you know there's there's also that balance there that i think is critically important in what we're learning about behavioral change in all aspects of people's lives you know you don't you don't want to punish yourself or completely change who you are you want to find a lifestyle that works for you

Kyle Roed:

right right yeah and i think so much of it it's it's it's not even about money for me it's about freedom it's about it's about having the ability to do what you want to do on your timetable whether that means you want to retire at 55 which that's probably not in the cards for many of us or you want to continue to just work comfortably at a job that you enjoy that you know for a long period of time and just be comfortable in retirement you know it's it's it's but for me it's that wellness it is about freedom it's not about being you know wealthy it's about what is wealth or freedom look like for you

Liz Davidson:

you know that so well said and i think that's something that the industry seems to be rapidly shifting and we've always been very focused on is yeah it's not that ending account balance it's when when are you at a place of financial security where you can do what you want with your life right and you know that may be for a lot of people i mean we work with a lot of technology and consulting firms where people love their work law firms you know like they love their work they do not want to retire until they have to but just the freedom of saying you know i potentially could kind of take a step back or maybe change my role within the organization that something to something that's more fulfilling or god forbid something medically or you know something happened in my life where i need to retire in part or full i'm able to because i'm financially able to and so you know that you know that i think we got to change our our thinking about retirement you know i think it has meant for so long the absence of work as opposed to the presence of a really meaningful life where all the work he's done in life leads to this place where you have the flexibility and the resources to do what matters most to you and what fulfills you the most

Kyle Roed:

right absolutely so i want to explore a little bit more about your your vision for for your organization and the word that stuck out to me as i was reading through your bio and preparing was you wanted 100% unbiased financial coaching so walk me through what your focus was as it relates to bias

Liz Davidson:

yeah so i started this business in 1999 dating myself here a bit but um i was in the investment industry and i i had i was ceo of my own hedge funds and you know i was the one responsible for selling and marketing the fund and you know so i was on the other side and i was selling people and i was you know this was during the.com era and we were a value you know kind of warren buffett benjamin graham investing fund that was very focused on long term stable blue chip companies and you know this is cats.com era right

Kyle Roed:

yeah

Liz Davidson:

and you know just really recognized that people there there were at that point and you know it's probably more now but hundreds of 1000s of financial iq people calling themselves financial advisors um you know 10s of 1000s of you know stocks bonds mutual funds you know even more you know products and services everything was oriented towards selling something to someone and all the accompanying guidance you know was attached to that so you know you go to you know life insurance broker and it's gotten a lot better but you no matter what your issue life insurance is the solution

Kyle Roed:

we got whole life we got variable life we got term life

Liz Davidson:

yeah when i was graduating college with a lot of student loan debt no dependents and this is what you need to be focused on right so so i saw this going on and I, I even felt like I was part of the problem because I have something to sell, right? So I got to a point where I was like, I want to be on this other side of, of having no conflict of interest and just focus on helping people and how can I, how can we do that, and it became obvious that the best way to do that was for the companies to pay us as an employee benefit. So we get paid from the company, but we do not sell any financial products, services investments, we're not affiliated with any firms that do, it's completely financial coaching. It delivered in an unbiased way. And all of our coaches are certified financial planners, that have really made a lifestyle and career change, they've given up their licenses to sell securities, they've maintained all their credentials and designations, and increase those. And then now we're on the other side where their entire livelihood in addition to their base salary, their their bonus, which is significant, if they, you know, perform well, which obviously, all of them do, or they wouldn't be here is based on the behavioral change, they're able to impact or support from employees. So instead of being based on conditions, how many policies do so it's what percentage of employees are taking next steps, short, medium and long term? Like, what is the impact you're having on these people's lives, knowing obviously, the employee does the heavy lifting here. But as a coach, you should be judged by the results. You know, the people you're coaching are getting, as opposed to anything else in my mind. So it's a it's, it's really, it's fun.

Kyle Roed:

Wow, I'm just I, my brain is going so many different directions. I'm hearing what you're saying. And so, you know, full disclosure, I actually one of my internships in college was selling insurance. Under the guise of financial coaching, I mean, it really it but it was exactly what you just described, it was, you know, I came in there with my first damn bright eyed, bushy tailed. And I said, Okay, when do we, you know, where are we going to start to learn about financial wellness? And they're like, no, give me a list of people to call. And that was it. Right? Your first task was give me 100 names. And then it was cold, calling people and selling them insurance. That was the whole internship, it was awful. And I was like, I thought we were going to help people. But it was Yeah, it was so much a it was a vehicle for sales. It wasn't necessarily, you know, the, the intent wasn't to help the intent was to sell. And if we help people, that was great. It was like, it was like an unintended consequence. But oh, okay, cool. Yeah. And I'm like, I don't think this is for me. So I, you know, and then I, you know, I like to say, HR found me, but, you know, I, I like to think that, you know, those products are there for a really important reason. And if you have dependents and you need life insurance, you need life insurance, like you somebody needs to sell that to you, that's critical, but knowing when you need it, and what product is actually helpful versus you know, eroding your wealth slowly, is critical. So I love that, that that context. And we could go we could go really deep on this, but like, I have a I, you know, the the approach on like, you know, mutual funds, and the the fact that, you know, really, the fund manager is selling the fund, not necessarily trying to get the best investment. It's just trying to get the right investment mix to sell it. Yeah. Yeah, there's so much there.

Liz Davidson:

There's so much there. And that really quickly, you make a really good point. So I think there's a distinction between being sold, and buying. So what we're trying to do is get employees where it is appropriate for them to buy life insurance or whatever it may be disability insurance for them to hire a financial advisor to manage their, their buying because they know this is what's needed. This is what's in their best interest. They know they're smart, informed consumer. Right. And that makes a huge difference. Because although I will say most financial advisors, especially those that are certified financial planners are absolutely aboveboard, and additive. You know, you have those Bernie made offs of the world, right? Where if you make the wrong decision in some of these areas, you can really, really hurt yourself. So having a, you know, a financial wellness benefit where you can, you can have kind of an advocate that works with you and sorting through through all of this and is helping you buy as opposed to being sold, you know, is a big benefit.

Kyle Roed:

Yeah, absolutely. And you touched on something that you know, every HR professional loves slash hates to talk about. And that's, that's incentivizing behavior. Right. You know, so it's the question is What? What behaviors incentivize? So I'm curious, maybe just the HR nerd in me wants to know, how do you measure a financial advisor on how good of an advisor they actually are? Do you have like a KPI that tracks like? The the improvement on that the score of somebody financial health? How do you how do you do that?

Liz Davidson:

Sorry, you talk about internally for our coach? Yeah, yeah, yeah. So distinction. We we call them coaches, as opposed to advisors, because we're not giving advice and not selling anything. So. So our financial coaches, yeah, it's a bunch of KPIs, we have 30 days, we have a behavioral change study that goes or survey that goes out to everyone that meets with a coach, what have you done since? So there's that. And then we look over 135 years, the same users, we have our you know, remember that scale, I talked about our financial wellness assessment. So similar to trainer, where maybe you start, the only difference is, we want to go up in the scale. Typically, with a trainer, personal trainer, people want to go down. So keeping that in mind, you know, where are you starting? And where do you finish with your overall score, but also with key aspects? I mean, the assessment is dynamic, and, and very personalized. So, you know, were you prepared for retirement? Prior? And then are you prepared for retirement? Now, when you, you know, you run a projection based on your deferral rate, and you're, you know, overall different accounts and situation like, that's, you know, just getting to see not only your overall improvement and wellness, but what are the areas where you've made improvements. And so all of this, we're tracking, and all of this really informs us, as to which coaches, you know, should get the highest bonuses and end up, you know, you know, how do we leverage these talents, where we see patterns, you know, certain coaches are really strong, similar, certain trainers in certain areas, okay, so let's leverage them more in this area versus others in this area. And, you know, just make sure we're kind of the highest and best use of our talent to team.

Kyle Roed:

That's great. That's great. And, you know, I'm just thinking you're talking about, talk about financial challenges. And then I think about the interrelationship between mental health in the workplace, and stress, and then, and then the fact that somebody's finances also need to be in a good place, or that's going to be another stressor that they bring with them to work. And then you get into people who, you know, get, make make poor decisions, because they're under stress, or, or, you know, can't think clearly or, you know, or, or, you know, we deal with this every once in a while, and HR get a little cranky, because they've got a little stress, they're like, you know, so it's such a, it's such an important thing, but if you manage it, it's, it's not as stressful, right? So it's almost like, you know, if you ignore it, and just hope that it goes away and eventually open up your 401k dot com account or whatever, and see, Oh, good. I have multi million dollars, I can I can retire now. It just doesn't really work that way.

Liz Davidson:

Yeah, you I mean, you make a great point on the unstress, the American Psychological Association did a study, I think with AP, where they found and you may have read it 60% of chronic illness is directly related to financial stress. So I'm imagining just to the back end of the study, you know, when you're at the doctor filling out that form, that's probably asking you what your financial stresses and you know, correlating because it was 10s of 1000s of people, but the the reality is financial stress is a feeder stress for relationship stress, you know, for work stress, because you don't perform as well at work. So it feeds into all these other aspects of your life. And so it's, it's particularly detrimental from that standpoint. And also from the standpoint that it is it's not, you know, with stress, we release cortisol, which is a fight or flight hormone that's helpful in dangerous situations, but to have that coursing through your body. All you know, on a regular basis because your finances mean they're ever present, right? It's not a one time thing. And that's a big deal. And so we've done a whole lot of work with healthcare companies, as clients that have looked at, you know, how can we improve both? You know, what are the synergies here, because you really can make a bit, I mean, so much. So many chronic conditions, ulcers, anxiety, has even been tied to heart attacks, migraines, you know, can be tied pretty directly to financial stress, you make an impact there, you're going to see a resulting impact on people's health and well being and mental health certainly as well. Those are so interrelated. I mean,

Kyle Roed:

yeah. And I, so I'm curious, as you have done this work, and and helped companies address some of these issues, have you been able to measure some of the, you know, kind of the ROI of, you know, improving somebody's mental well being and financial well being and how that actually reflects in the company's performance?

Liz Davidson:

Yes, and we have, we have several studies. So we've been able to measure AI ROI, as I mentioned, coordinated to reduction healthcare claims of the same people. So this is, you know, this is like a double blind placebo study, we're looking at the same people over time, and they have fewer claims, versus those that did not interact, you know, having more. So we've been able to look at that we've also tied it to reductions in apps, unplanned absenteeism, garnishments, 401k, loans, all of which costs money to administer. And, you know, unplanned absenteeism obviously has, you know, financial implications. performance and productivity, those are harder. So those are more based on performance ratings, and how those are changing. So there's, that's harder, right? We were a knowledge economy in a large part, it's hard to completely track productivity. But benefits satisfaction and turnover, its turnover is hasn't a pretty significant correlation. Because as you know, the more an employee values, their benefits, and the more they have in their retirement plan or their HSA, the more they're seeing their employer as a really critical component of their financial security. And you don't want to leave when that's the case versus, you know, not so

Kyle Roed:

that's huge. Yeah, and I just think, you know, depending upon your organization, in which study, you look at, you know, turnover cost could range from, you know, a couple $1,000 per person, kind of, on the lower end up to like, three, four or five times somebody's annual salary for these, you know, really critical, hard to fill jobs. That's a pretty, that's a pretty quick ROI. On some of that,

Liz Davidson:

yes. Yeah, I think you're right, it's very variable, depending on the field and degree of specialization. But, yes, absolutely. We work with a lot of health care organizations, where there's a shortage of nurses already. And there's nurse burnout, and all of that. And, you know, obviously, we're just one part of, you know, much larger solution on how do you retain these nurses and make sure they don't burn out. But, you know, the financial aspect is, is a key piece of that.

Kyle Roed:

Absolutely. What a critical topic. And, you know, I just, I just reflect back on, you know, some of the conversations that I've had with employees who get, you know, injured outside of work, but did not select, you know, a voluntary disability policy, you know, long term disability or short term disability, and hopefully, hopefully, most employers are offering those types of things, but they're not always, they're not always included, right, a lot of times you have to choose that. And that four or five, six bucks a paycheck, you know, is something that you don't want to spend, but when, you know, when it happens, and you don't have the protection at for instance, and you can't work, you know, it's it's those types of those types of scenarios that, you know, I'll never forget the first time someone walked into my office with a, you know, a serious health condition that would keep them out of work more than six months. And at that time, with that employer, we did not offer Long Term Disability unless you voluntarily selected it. So looking up and having to tell that individual, I'm sorry, you're only covered up to six months, you're going to have to go on disability, you know, you're gonna have to, you know, figure something out, find a job that you can perform, you know, it's like, you know, at that point, you just, you just wish that that person had made a different decision, but you can't go back in time. Right. had somebody been guiding them along? You know, it could have been a much better situation for that for that person. And in HR, most of us want to help people, but there's nothing we can do to help that person

Liz Davidson:

at that right. It's too late, right? Yeah, you may such an important point there which is and it's so fascinating to me how you know it choosing the health care plan or you know these these decisions right about your benefits people are looking at his paperwork they have to turn in by a certain literally spending you know 515 minutes in many cases if that you know it's or what are my coworkers doing i'm just going to you know do that and but they have life changing implications

Kyle Roed:

yeah

Liz Davidson:

and so that's an another very very important piece you know that we're always working with employers on is hot it's very hard and i think it's getting better post COVID because i think we recognize the importance of being prepared for unexpected shocks but very very counterintuitive to you know as humans to worry about things that may happen in the future you know versus being so focused on what's right in front of us and you know anything that can be done company wide to really take a step back and make sure employees really have the time and understanding and guidance to make those decisions thoughtfully so they aren't in that position right is huge so

Kyle Roed:

right yeah and i mean you and we you know we said this at the very beginning you know hr we're not we're really not supposed to be advising right we're not supposed to be giving any sort of investment advice at all we're not trained to do that and if we are we shouldn't be doing it in the context as a employer representative but but every time one of these young people that thinks they're invincible signs up for an hsa plan because it's like almost free but don't put any money into an hsa and i'm like are you sure you don't want to put any money into this hsa cuz you have a high deductible you know do you have five or $10,000 that in your back pocket if you go to the er because that might happen to yes but yeah you know that it's their benefit they pick it they choose you know so so does your does your organization help people actually select benefits absolutely elections okay okay

Liz Davidson:

select benefits and determine how much to fund and you know and really kind of change the perspective of if you can if you can set this up the right way you know you're going to be in such a better position long term and you know we're it's exciting to see especially with gen z coming in i feel like just based on kind of what they've been through especially this past year there is a much bigger understanding of i've got to take control of my life and it has to be a priority or i'm not going to have upward mobility i mean i think that a reality is you know we are in a situation where inflation and taxes are likely to rise and you know it's it's going to be it's going to be potentially hard on future generations but the things they do now to protect themselves and to set themselves up for success you know might be what ends up changing the trajectory so that we can restore that upward mobility

Kyle Roed:

yeah yeah i had a really really great interview with the true gen z we're back and i was you know i was asking because it's it's like it's so funny because it's like you know at one point i was the youngest generation in the workplace and you know i felt like why don't people understand you know us and now i'm asking the same question to the gen z because i'm like i don't get i don't get you you gen z are but they you know one of the things she called out specifically was you know show me the money i want to be financially successful i want to be you know i want to i want to be in control of my destiny and that was one of one of her top goals in addition to being environmentally socially responsible and being diverse and inclusive and you know it's it's an it's a wish list but you know it was encouraging to hear that there's that there's that pragmatism because i think a lot of times you'll you know people assume that you know they want the world and they don't want to work for you know kids these days is the old the old saying that you hear right every generation but you know i think there is a lot of pragmatism i mean what have they seen you know the great recession when they were young yeah now they've seen what happens when everybody gets locked inside because of a pandemic and they've seen people get laid off over the last year and and now all these people being unemployed and people in the service industry have absolutely no income besides you know an unemployment benefit and again you you're not free you can't you can't yeah control over your own destiny if you don't you don't grab grab this stuff so yeah i mean

Liz Davidson:

yeah i am too we we work with a lot of nfl players and nfl players association as a client and seeing you know we started in 2009 seeing just the shift in perspective it is now cool to be good with your money you have marshawn lynch and you have some of these really big names oh yeah look you know you got to pay attention to this we don't want to go bro we want to be future moguls you know it's it's it is very cool and i'm seeing that i mean it's anecdotal but i have a nine year old and not nine year old sorry 11 that was

Kyle Roed:

wow it's been a long long year

Liz Davidson:

have a tween basically that is you know i'm just him and his friends and the way they talk about life and you know global warming and just the future they are they are very in tune to the world they are inheriting and what they need to be thinking about for kids you know yeah their kids you know i don't remember i'm a gen x or we didn't sit around and talk about the future of the world right that was not what we were doing

Kyle Roed:

so yeah tell me about your views on diversity equity and inclusion was not was not one of the things that i grew up you know discussing it just wasn't it wasn't as top of mind for me so yeah

Liz Davidson:

brady bunch episode but yeah

Kyle Roed:

yeah i was yeah i was i was real good at everything i cared about which was nothing really important to you know making the world a better place so good for them good for them

Liz Davidson:

yeah

Kyle Roed:

oh that's great well this is this is just been a wonderful wonderful conversation and something this is a topic i'm personally very passionate about and you know i'm i'm still very much a student in my journey of financial education but if 2020 has taught us anything is that we can't take anything for granted and we need to take some control of our own destiny and and that means being educated so liz thank you for for you know starting the organization and having this be one of the things that you're you're focused on so we are going to shift gears and we're going to go into the hr flash round all right so we're gonna we're gonna come back come at you hot here so all right all right question number one what are you reading right now

Liz Davidson:

creativity inc it is ed catmull who is the founder of pixar and it's all about how do you set up a culture that just fosters creativity what's fascinating is i think we tend to think creativity is a result of outside inspiration but you actually can do a lot to get your employees to become much more creative and they've done a great job as evidenced by their all their movies i mean just the string of hit after hit after hit so highly recommended

Kyle Roed:

absolutely i may have shed a tear at a pixar movie once or twice

Liz Davidson:

well that's part of it is they're they they're looking at layers right they want to entertain the kids but there's this underpinning you know morale moral of the story that's really really powerful in almost everything they do so yeah

Kyle Roed:

yeah i feel you woody i feel yeah yeah my kids are like why are you why are you crying about the the cowboy or the you know the cause buzz lightyear and made him made him less relevant and i get that that's that's a that's a fear anyways okay we'll get we'll unpack that later after the show all right question number two who should we be listening to

Liz Davidson:

um my my two favorite and i guess everyone i think it's hard for everyone to find who resonates with them but i would say renee brown and gary vee for different reasons brittnay is just incredibly entertaining and authentic and you know i am a believer in vulnerability and you know what opening yourself up to kind of new experiences and and potential for failure kundu gary is just a force to be reckoned that inspires the hell out of me because he's so bound and determined and tenacious and you know really preaches kind of this concept of agency and leaning in and you know make life what you want it to be so those are my two

Kyle Roed:

yeah i love that look both a bit drastically different so yeah you've got the full spectrum there but i do love a well placed gary vee f bomb i mean he always uses the word you know it's it's an it's an art and yeah

Liz Davidson:

yeah it's a noun verb adjective adverb yeah and wallpapers

Kyle Roed:

versatility all right last question here how can our listeners connect with you

Liz Davidson:

um so the best way is info at financial finesse calm i actually am i receive those emails so that's the best way to reach me but also you know for any questions about our services etc

Kyle Roed:

perfect perfect and we'll have we'll have all that information in the show notes so that our listeners can connect and learn more and i strongly encourage any any hr professional that's looking at benefits and thinking about how do i maintain competitiveness as it relates to benefits package you know this this is certainly something that i'm going to investigate and look look into a little bit more for my employees it's a fascinating conversation today and i really appreciate the work liz

Liz Davidson:

great thank you so much

Kyle Roed:

all right take care all right that does it for the rebel hr podcast big thank you to our guests follow us on facebook at rebel hr podcast winner at rebel hr guy or see our website at rebel human resources.com views and opinions expressed by podcast was the authors of this podcast

Jude Roed:

baby