The term “financial literacy” slowly came on to the scene about 15 years ago. Before that there was little discussion about the need for financial literacy for today’s youth, millennials or the general population at large. Man, have things changed.
Since that time there’s been billions of dollars spent on financial literacy efforts by non-profits, financial institutions and government entities. All well-intended but with little change in financial behavior.
The ROI is not there because traditional financial literacy is missing the mark big time.
Traditional financial literacy is boring. The two words “financial literacy” are two words that should never go together. It sounds like and is education. There’s a big emphasis on credit scores, APR’s (annual percentage rates), budgeting and how to be a good spender. Today’s financial literacy is a cause for yawning, leaving a workshop early or not showing up at all.
I’m not alone. Ask any millennial and they will tell you the same thing. They don’t want be financially literate or financially educated. They just want to know HOW to be financially successful so they can push forward to achieving some life goals and dreams. And I’m guessing that’s what you want as well.
Here’s what I believe needs to happen on a global scale:
- Financial literacy needs to change its name to financial success. With a focus on what it takes to be financially successful in life starting in middle school.
- We need to stir the heart and mind of young people to understand why they ultimately want to be financially successful in life. This is the foundation to a successful financial success program and the impetus to creating real behavioral change.
- Focus on the time value of money and power of compound interest through investing. This will affect dreaming, spending, student loan decisions and make a dent in frivolous consumer debt accumulation.
As a result, lives and entire families will be positively changed along the way. Looking forward to seeing a major shift in how we teach money. In the meantime, we will keep on teaching money differently through Young Money University.
“Today’s financial literacy is a cause for yawns, leaving a workshop early or not showing up at all.” – Todd Romer