I recently had the privilege of speaking with Jean Chatzky, a prominent figure in personal finance. Jean is the CEO of HerMoney and host of the podcast Her Money with Jean Chatzky. Our conversation offers a wealth of knowledge, shedding light on the evolving world of financial coaching and its myriad opportunities.

This conversation with Chatzky was not just a peek into Her Money but also a masterclass in understanding the role of financial coaches. Her emphasis on empathy, personal connection, and adaptability offers a blueprint for anyone looking to make a mark in this field.

For financial coaches, these insights are golden – highlighting the importance of personal growth, adaptability, and understanding the diverse needs of clients in this dynamic landscape.

Below is a truncated and edited look at our Q&A session. For the full interview, be sure to listen to the whole episode.

Me: Jean, it’s fantastic to have you here. Can you tell us more about Her Money and the audience you primarily serve?

Jean Chatzky: Absolutely! Her Money began as a podcast and has grown into an award-winning website with free newsletters and coaching programs. Our primary focus is on women’s financial empowerment. We offer programs like Finance Fix, focusing on budgeting and cash flows, and Investing Fix, an investing club teaching women how to invest. We’re continually evolving to meet our community’s needs.

Me: That’s a significant shift from financial literacy to actual coaching. What inspired this transition?

Jean Chatzky: My experience in conducting money makeovers and television series like Oprah’s “Debt Diet” showed me the power of personal financial guidance. Over time, I developed a methodology that proved successful. We noticed a recurring pattern of questions in our community, which led us to package and offer our coaching services.

Me: It’s interesting how curiosity and empathy play crucial roles in financial coaching. I’ve found that being genuinely inquisitive about a client’s experiences can open up new avenues for guidance.

Jean Chatzky: Exactly, and that’s why these interpersonal skills are vital for a coach. Money conversations are deeply personal. Our approach combines one-on-one coaching with small group learning for accountability and a sense of shared journey.

Me: Now, about hiring financial coaches for Her Money. What qualities and skills are you looking for?

Jean Chatzky: We’re scaling up, adding more classes for our community and corporate clients. We need coaches who are not just financially savvy but also empathetic and great listeners. These part-time roles are perfect for coaches developing their own practices. They should be comfortable with our methodology, dependable, and capable of fostering a personal connection with our participants.

Me: Could you share more about the ideal fit for a coach in your team, especially concerning your methodologies and tools?

Jean Chatzky: We ask our coaches to go through our program as students first to ensure they’re comfortable with our approach. They must be dependable, as our participants get attached to their coaches. We also offer opportunities for coaches to continue working with clients after the eight-week program ends, fostering long-term financial guidance.

Me: The landscape of financial coaching is certainly evolving. Where do you see it heading?

Jean Chatzky: Financial coaching is gaining momentum, especially with big companies investing in financial wellness. There’s a growing realization of the impact financial stress has on employee engagement and productivity. For financial coaches, this opens up a plethora of opportunities in the corporate world.

Me: That aligns with the shifting perception of financial coaching. It’s no longer just about fixing financial distress but about enhancing one’s financial well-being.

Jean Chatzky: Absolutely. It’s akin to hiring a personal trainer but for your finances. The role of a coach is not just to educate but to help implement and sustain behavioral change. Financial literacy is the foundation, but coaching is about guiding through the nuances of personal finance.

Me: Lastly, for those interested in joining Her Money as coaches, what steps should they take?

Jean Chatzky: They can reach out directly to me via email. We’re looking for passionate individuals who align with our methodology and are eager to make a difference in the lives of our participants.

Me: Thank you, Jean, for these incredible insights. Your perspective is invaluable for anyone in the financial coaching space.