Are you a young professional that finds themselves with an advanced degree and high paying job, yet you struggle to manage your finances from day to day? If so, don't worry; you're not alone. My generation is unique in that we our making more than our parents ever dreamed they could, but there's no denying that we lack certain money management skills that hinder us from financial independence. In attempt to give our generation the skills they need, Kimberly Palmer, Alpha Consumer columnist and blogger for US News & World Report, just released her book entitled Generation Earn. Her book looks to give you a plan for every big decision you'll have to make to create a successful life—in whatever form it takes for you. Kimberly was gracious enough to sit down and answer a few questions.
1. What inspired you to become passionate about personal finance?
I love how empowering money can be. It can help us to feel secure – financially but also emotionally – as well as enable us to support the causes and values that are important to us. It can let us pursue dreams like starting our own businesses or retiring early… the possibilities are endless. In pop culture and the media we focus so much on the negative side of money, but I like focusing instead on what it can do for us, instead of the ways it can be limiting.
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2. How did those passions influence your book?
I was frustrated with the negative stereotype about our generation – people in their 20s, 30s, and 40s, those of us usually called “gen Y” or “gen X.” We’re often told we’re bad with money and referred to as “generation debt,” but I don’t think we’re all as incompetent as we get credit for. In fact, I think the recession really inspired a lot of us to get more on top of our money. So I wanted to write a guide that would help people do that and take their money management to the next level.
3. What would you say is your mission statement for your book?
I want to help people make smart decisions so they can be financially secure, support their families, and give back to the causes they support.
4. When you look at our generation, what are some of the positives you see with managing our money?
The recession and overall green movement really helped shape us into being smarter, more frugal-minded consumers. That doesn’t mean denying ourselves pleasures, but just being more aware of how the choices we make everyday can add up. We’re more interested in researching our investments and understanding just where our money is. We also want to know about the companies we’re supporting with our purchases, such as whether they treat their workers well, support green causes, and otherwise behave ethically.
5. What's your most crucial piece of advice for the young professional?
To save like crazy! It is shocking to hear but I really think we need to save about one-third of our income – including for retirement, emergency savings and long-term goals. That means living below our means but in exchange we get a plan for financial independence, which can provide such deep feelings of satisfaction.
He can get her book here on Amazon.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.