Benefits Advisory

Let’s talk about money – taboo or topical?

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People are scared or embarrassed to talk about money – it is often considered taboo to bring up the topic in conversation with friends or colleagues. This notion is not uncommon in countries around the world. In France, the origin story tells of French farmers and how they learnt quickly not to mention money that they had under their mattress, as this increased the chance of being robbed. This led to the fallacy that the less you talked about your riches, the more likely you would maintain it. This seems to be the story in many different cultures, with South America and Southeast Asia as examples where it is taught from a young age that discussing money is discourteous and frowned upon. 

However, this belief is being phased out! One simple way of assessing this outcome is the increasing level of “Financial influencers”. This being a reference to social media influencers who preach about #personalfinance on TikTok, with this hashtag exceeding 3 billion viewers. 

As the number of studies and research continues to develop about financial wellbeing, there has been an increasing revelation that money is associated with poor mental health. And despite popular believe, it is not just people with relatively less money who are affected. A study by the Bank of America Corp. found that in a sample of people who have enough investable money to qualify as “mass affluent”, 59% experienced financial concerns that dampen their mental health.  

Of those people, the financial anxiety led to 56% of them having negative physical flow on effects. 

It is because of this that businesses (now more than ever) need to invest in their employee’s financial wellbeing, to ensure they are healthy and happy at work, and are able to maintain, if not improve, productivity at work. Furthermore, mentally healthier employees lead to reduced medical costs for businesses and reduce sick leave, allowing for the conduct of work to be overall, a more joyful experience.  

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