Over 50 alumni, students and guests attended a Personal Finance workshop hosted by the Imperial Women’s Network, 22 September. Andrea Solana* (MBA 2014) challenged the audience to assess their spending habits, attitudes toward money and personal financial goals in this interactive session focused on financial planning and investment principles.
“Key to achieving your financial goals,” Andrea explained, “is to prioritise your needs, identify problems and opportunities, and carry out a thorough review of your spending for a 6 month period, to highlight areas of unexpected over-spend. A personal balance sheet will help you understand your current position and then spend time upfront assessing your future cash flow,” Andrea advised. “It is important when defining goals to assess priorities and trade-offs – find the right balance between personal sacrifice and splurges.”
The workshop went on to look at the various investment and savings options, with Andrea explaining that: “The earlier you can start to save, no matter how big or small, the more time the savings have to grow – compound growth can be very impactful.”
However Andrea had several words of caution regarding investing, advising not to put too many of your assets into one company/commodity, as this possess a greater risk.
Diversification can reduce volatility and improve performance, by balancing out the risk and attempting to mitigate loss.
Summarising the discussion Andrea finished with some key action points, including:
- Keep track of how much money you earn and spend
- Make adjustments to your spending based on values and priorities
- Don’t ignore debt repayment
- Build up savings
- Save for retirement
- Use the tax-efficient vehicles available to you
- Make your money work for you
Dere Rewane (Full-Time MBA 2000), who attended the workshop, commented; “The content and delivery was very insightful; and the delivery was excellent.”
The event was attended by Business School and Imperial College alumni and students as well as external guests, and was followed by a drinks networking reception to allow attendees to quiz the network facilitators more and connect with like-minded individuals.
The Imperial Women’s Network is planning a variety of events in the coming year, with the focus on ‘Personal’, such as personal brand, and personal well-being. Keep up-to-date with news from the network through the LinkedIn group or follow them on Twitter @ImperialWomen’s
Andrea graduated from University of Virginia’s McIntire School of Commerce in 2005 with a degree in Finance and Management. In 2005, Andrea joined a well-known Washington DC based international tax and global wealth management firm where she provided advisory services to U.S. expatriates abroad and foreign nationals living in the U.S. In 2014, Andrea completed her MBA at Imperial College London and holds her US Series 65 license and UK Investment Advice Diploma.