Jen Hemphill is a mom, wife, mentor, money coach and entrepreneur. She is passionate about teaching busy, go-getter women how to effectively use their money as a tool to live their best life. This passion was evident even before she became a FINRA Foundation Military Spouse Fellow in 2008, but in a short time she has built a business and a community that allows her to live her best life while giving back to others. This month, get to know fellow AFCPE® Member, Jen Hemphill.
Tell me a little about your background. How did you get into the field of personal finance and what motivated you to start a private practice?
I am a military spouse of 16 years and have various degrees that have nothing to do with each other – you could say I have a diverse interest in learning. With the constant moves, I was trying to figure out what I could do that was mobile and where I didn’t have to start over. Managing money has always been something I was good at, even to the point where family and friends would come to me for advice. One day my husband forwarded me an email he got at work about the FINRA Foundation Military Spouse Fellowship Program. I applied, my journey began and I have not looked back!
You currently host a weekly podcast called “Her Money Matters.” What inspired you to start a podcast and what have you learned along the way?
I started the Her Money Matters Podcast in order to serve my audience in a bigger and better way. In the beginning, I was writing blog posts but, honestly, not too frequently. Later, I realized that writing blog posts was not my forte but I loved speaking, so I decided to try podcasting. I can proudly say that this is definitely my medium to provide free content to my audience. I actually used to cringe when someone would call me a blogger!
There are two things I have learned about podcasting: #1: It is a commitment, a lot of hard work, and it takes a team (I am so thankful for my virtual assistant and editor). #2: People are listening and it is so rewarding to hear about the impact you are making globally! (Recently, I was contacted with a request to interview a U.S. Treasury Senior Official for my podcast, so yes people are definitely listening!)
At AFCPE® we know the value of building a community. Over the last year, you’ve done just that. Creating a community of like-minded women through Fearless Money Sisterhood. Tell us a little more about the program you’ve started and your purpose behind building the community.
I started the Fearless Money Sisterhood (FMS) not only to provide women with a more economical option to work with me, but also as a way to surround myself and others with like-minded women to cheer each other on.
Getting your finances under control can be done on your own, but it’s much more fun to go on the journey with others. Plus, it opens up the doors to learn from each other. I may be the one teaching and guiding them, but they are the ones sharing their lessons learned (what has or has not worked for them) – so I am learning as well!
The program focuses on getting your finances under control. Each participant is provided with classes and tools accessible 24/7, along with monthly live calls, monthly hot seats, weekly office hours and access to the FMS group on Facebook. While the program contents are the same for each person, the program is flexible enough to meet the needs of each individual’s unique starting point.
The other community I have been building is the community of my podcast listeners, which has been incredibly rewarding. It’s one thing to have listeners, but it is priceless when you are able to connect with them and build a relationship outside of the podcast episodes! It allows me to get up close and personal. I get to hear their interests firsthand and provide more information on topics they want to learn more about. They also get to connect with each other which is huge.
Another unique aspect of your practice is your focus on giving back. Tell us more about your giving philosophy.
I honestly believe that we are here in this world not only to serve in some capacity, but to give financially as well. The power of people giving really adds up and makes a significant change on an individual/family (whoever the organization is serving). It also creates a sense of abundance within us which allows us to grow personally and acknowledge how lucky we truly are.
What advice would you give to an AFC® professional interested in building a private practice?
The best advice I can give is to know who you want to serve and be clear about your particular story and unique message. People resonate with stories; they need something they can relate to! In our field, our end goal may be the same (helping people to be in control of their finances), but how we teach and our message is unique.
What have you found most beneficial about being a member of AFCPE®?
Hands down, the educational opportunities. In this world of the internet there is a lot of information floating out there and we know we can’t trust everything we read online! I know I can rely on AFCPE to provide the necessary, unbiased education I need (including the well done research I can trust).
And the question we ask in every Member Spotlight: if you had to choose, what is your favorite personal finance advice?
My favorite piece of financial advice is around budgeting. We always talk about tracking expenses and knowing our non-monthly expenses. We tell the people we serve to put the non-monthly expenses in their budget, but typically no action follows. These numbers just sit in the budget template. So my advice is to remind them that their budget does not have a conversation with their bank account and they need to create an action for that. I also suggest opening up separate account(s) and transferring that money over, just like a bill, so when a non-monthly expense/bill comes due you know the money will be there.