There’s always a lot of good natured speculation about which sex is better at managing money. The truth is whether you are a man or a woman actually makes no difference. I’ve seen equal numbers of good and bad money behaviours from both men and women. There is however two really distinct types of money managers and the best results seem to come when couples have one of each.
- The Delegator: Just focuses on the big picture and leaves the details up to someone else. They think about the overall scenario, the long term and trust the experts to handle the rest.
- The Detailer: Sure they care about the long term, but only after they have reconciled the latest monthly bank statement. They happily run the household accounts through an online program that imports from other websites and they want to understand why financial projections are only done to the fourth decimal point.
So the question arises; are you a Delegator or a Details person? Are you hands-off or hands-wringing?
Both behaviours are important and they are highly complementary. The point is to understand what your preference/type is, as well as your partners if you are in a relationship.
I’ve had meetings with couples where the husband took verbatim file notes of my comments while the wife yawned. I’ve had meetings where the husband said “That’s enough, I trust you” while the wife still had questions about the fine print on related party transactions between her super fund trustee and the fund insurer. Both couples work well together because they understand what they are each like and they agree how to share the roles.
To cut a long story short my point in detailing this is that ‘What you are isn’t as important as knowing who you are’. Success with money is being aware of how you act with money. Know your strengths and your weaknesses!
So now for some easy tips for the Delegator and for the Detailer:
- Delegator key actions: It won’t be easy, but pay attention to the details. It’s true that if you look after the pennies, the pounds will be ok. For example, you don’t have to keep exactly to a budget, but you do have to have one!
- Detailer key actions: Often getting caught up in the details means you can delay making important decisions, or stress over things you can’t control. Don’t forget the big picture plans, and to enjoy the success along the way.
- And if you are in a relationship where you are poles apart in your money habits look at it as a good thing and see if you can make both methods work together – the results can be extremely impressive.