Why financial education is utterly essential

Think of your schooling for a moment. Go back to your childhood, your young adult years, your time in college. Now, ponder this: When did you first learn of the need to save for retirement? When did a teacher, or professor, or parent, or trusted family friend first broach the subject?

It's a topic you may well consider as you read the following thought-provoking story on financial literacy by Plexus Financial Services Senior Vice President Karie O'Connor.

In the story, which was published in the January 25 edition of the Daily Herald Business Ledger, O'Connor writes about the importance of plan participant education -- and the utter lack of education some receive about their finances.

"Most individuals have never received financial education," O'Connor writes. "It has not been part of the standard educational curriculum. Financial illiteracy isn’t an issue unique to any one population. It affects men, women, young people and old people, and it spans all racial and socioeconomic lines. Most individuals have experienced financial setbacks; these setbacks can create fear, procrastination, and the inability to focus on longer term financial goals. In the midst of sophisticated, repetitive retargeted advertising and the constant bombardment of social media, our culture breeds temptation and a focus on short- term wants.

"Successful employee education for the corporate retirement program will move participants from a contemplative state to one of preparation, action and maintenance. It will take into account the demographics of the organization, the participants’ investment knowledge, general financial literacy and challenges facing the employee group. Tailored communication will become all the more important as education specialists come to understand the current needs of the audience. Much has been written about generational differences, and understanding how the learning styles of various age groups impact engagement will be critical."


Plexus Financial Services, LLC is dedicated to helping corporate retirement plan participants and sponsors reach their goals. For more on PFS, visit PlexusFs.com or call 847-307-6222.