Lynn Ballou CFP

Certified Financial Planner

Lynn Ballou is a Certified Financial Planner and entrepreneur with EP Wealth Advisors, LLC. Lynn says she loves being able to guide clients through the financial complexities of life transitions. She feels she has a magic wand to make people’s lives better.

Photograph of Lynn Ballou, CFP
Lynn Ballou, CFP

Lynn began her career as an enrolled agent preparing taxes. The brand new field of CFP® was beginning to emerge and she took the certification course and follow-on study groups building her knowledge. The first female firm launched January 1, 1998, and on January 19, 2016, they joined forces with EP Wealth Advisors. When Lynn began she says the female professionals only amounted to about 5% of financial planners, now that number has grown to 23%. Plenty of room for more women she says!

Advice

Starting out, building a business, Lynn knew she had to save in order to grow to a point where her business would sustain her. She has reached that point. She says those who want to be an entrepreneur need to be able to hear ‘no’, to be truthful to themselves and be capable of pivoting.

Find your passion! Become your best authentic self!

Her advice for young women interested in becoming certified financial planners would be to shadow or intern with a financial professional. She says you cannot be what you cannot see. Even more than shadowing a CFP®, Lynn says to find a professional who lives in that profession, who really understands the nitty-gritty so they can give you the most comprehensive view of the career.

Resources

Lynn advocates for financial literacy for everyone – man, woman, child. She says we should be requiring financial literacy courses in order to graduate high school. Not simply how to buy and sell stocks; more practical money applications. How to budget, how to save, how to spend and invest and grow your wealth.

We can all get started on our financial journeys with some education ourselves. Lynn recommends perusing the CFP® board website at LetsMakeAPlan.org On this site one can find a local CFP®, or a mentor in the financial planning realm, and even learn a plethora of topics ranging from budgeting to growing your nest egg thru to retirement.

You can also get a hold of Lynn and she’ll guide you! Email her at lballou@epwealth.com

Philanthropy

Lynn has made it a focus of EP Wealth Advisors to invest in their client’s charities. She also manages EP Wealth and Women Initiative wherein they support the careers of fellow femme financial pros.

Lynn also supports the YWCA Berkley Oakland Chapter and Girls Inc of Alameda in Oakland.


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Leave a review on your podcatcher, or send me any feedback to anna@careertalkwithworkingwomen.com

Career Talk With Working Women Episode 001

Career Talk with Working Women logo

Career Talk with Working Women Podcast Launched!

Introducing you to the podcast, Career Talk with Working Women, where we explore the vast array of careers and lifestyles women have crafted for themselves. I’m your hostess, Anna Doo, and I possess an insatiable curiosity about how women navigate work, life, and define what success means to them. Join me on a journey to explore every possible career; the challenges, the benefits, the work-life harmony. No more fairy tale fluff. Let’s talk about the truths, the nitty gritty for each career.

Women Working Together

I am interviewing women who are interested in sharing their thoughts, advice and journey with the next generation of the workforce and even those of us adults trying to figure out where we fit.

I want answers.

  • How do you know what you’re meant to do for work?
  • Does it change at different phases of life?
  • Or is it best to craft life around work?
  • What defines career success?
  • How can we change the rhetoric that a huge paycheck equals success?
  • Are there any parallels between childhoods of those women finding fulfillment in their careers, or is it all a whim?
  • How many adult women change careers completely at different phases of life?
  • And what triggers those changes?

All of these questions and more are what I aim to explore in this podcast.

Why a Podcast About Women’s Careers

The idea for this podcast came about after I had my second child in my mid 30s. I had never really gotten onto the path of a lifelong career. I had dabbled here and there in many different things. Most of them full-time Army National Guard work which I thoroughly enjoyed. I was a photojournalist for the Army National Guard and that afforded me the opportunity to ask people questions.

I am curious by nature and this trait has only strengthened the older that I’ve become. But once I became a mother, working full-time, taking care of two very young children, trying to be a good wife, and just be everything that I feel that I’m expected to be, working became much more challenging. I really didn’t know what I was supposed to do.

You know you talk to people here and there and they know exactly what it is in life that they’re meant to do. I don’t have that feeling. I don’t have that ‘this is me, this is exactly what I am supposed to be here to do.’ So I started asking around. I started asking other women who are in the same space of life that I’m in with young children and who maybe had budding careers that they either try to continue on after this phase of life and some of them stopped their careers because of becoming mothers.

Passionate Career Women

I also just talked to women who seem genuinely passionate and interested in the work that they did on a daily basis. I want to know what drives them, what gets them to that mindset. Is it really just identifying that this is what they are good at in life and this is where they can be of service to others and then crafting your mind and your brain around this is what I’m supposed to do? Or do people truly feel like they have identified their calling?

I have a number of female friends who have gotten past this phase of life if you will. They’ve had children, or chosen not to have children, and their children are grown and out of the house and so they’re back in the paid workforce. I wanted to ask them whether they are still doing the same jobs that they were when they began their careers or are they changing constantly in what they’re doing for work. How do they define what success is? Is it really the amount of money that they’re making? Is it that they feel like they’re making a difference or that they’re just genuinely happy in the work that they’re doing and the people that they’re doing it with?

I had all of these questions that I just started asking people. I started asking women in particular because I feel like we tell young girls that they can be whatever they want to be when they grow up. But then the examples that we show them are rock stars and actresses and princesses. While those are wonderful things to aspire to be, the vast majority of us are not going to make it to those careers.

I want young girls to be able to see women in all sorts of careers.

Podcast Guests

The guests are women firefighters, women zoo keepers, women scientists, women entrepreneurs, women who have worked in restaurants their whole lives; whatever it is that these individual, local, you could reach out and touch them type of women are doing.

Along with this podcast, I’m writing a series of children’s books that are going to highlight individual women doing their jobs. The first one is a firefighter. She’s been a firefighter for more than 16 years and she’s actually one of the guests on the podcast. You’ll be able to listen to her interview and then by springtime you’ll be able to find that book and purchase it. I will of course include that information once it’s available.

In addition to the firefighter I’ve also had the privilege of speaking with a mechanical engineer. I’ve had the privilege of speaking with a Ph.D. candidate in communications and a clinical counselor. All of these different women doing all of these different types of jobs and they’ve all found peace in their work. They’ve found a sense of purpose and that really resonates throughout the interviews.

They’ve all found peace in their work. They’ve found a sense of purpose.

I hope you’ll listen to all of the interviews. I really hope that you’ll give me some feedback and let me know what other kinds of careers you would like me to seek out that women are doing. I also hope that you’ll share those podcasts with other women who you feel might be struggling with identifying what it is that they’re supposed to do with their lives and accepting that what they are doing is enough.

I also hope to reach young women and young girls who are just starting to identify what it is that they want to be doing for the rest of their lives. Whether they’re in mid high school, late high school or even college and going through that phase of life where you’re really just sort of experimenting; trying this job, volunteering over here, seeing what kind of work this kind of career would entail on a daily basis. That’s what I hope to share here as I interview women doing different jobs.

Inquiring Minds Want to Know the Daily Life in a Given Career

I am asking the questions of what it’s like day-to-day. What’s been the most exciting thing that’s happened in their career so far. What are the challenges that they have. How are they creating and crafting a work-life harmony that works for them. Is it a career that allows you to do so. Or is it a career that you really have to craft your external life around your work life. I want all of those answers because I want to share them with you. I want you to be able to listen to all of these different careers and kind of go ‘oh man that sounds perfect, that sounds fascinating. That sounds like something that I could do day in, day out for the foreseeable future’. Then hook you up with some resources to find some ways to talk with other women in that same career or go and volunteer.

One of the guests is a director of a non-profit and her advice for young girls is to go volunteer, go try out spaces that you think you might be interested in and just see what they are. I think that’s great advice for all of us is to just volunteer and to give back to our communities. But bigger picture than that is to try out a whole bunch of different things.

My Career Background

I was afforded a loving wonderful childhood. I have no qualms about the way that I was raised. The only thing I would say though is that when I was raised and where I was raised there weren’t a whole lot of opportunities to go and try a whole lot of different careers. There really wasn’t a lot of rhetoric in my early education about a vast array of careers and only when I got to college did I start to really look at options.  I thought, well I can make this a career or I can make that a career. But then you’re already there and you’re going OK well I’m paying for this, so maybe I should figure out something to get a degree in and hope that I can create or craft a career and a life out of it.

My undergrad is in Visual Communications in Graphic Design and Website Design from the fantastic Northern Arizona University. And thankfully that has proven to be a space that I really, really enjoy. I love creating. I love the visual design, color theory, the psychology behind why we do this for branding and why we do that for a website and user experience. It’s all very fascinating to me and I’m still trying to craft a career out of it. It’s one of my other side hustles if you will,  is website design for small businesses.

But I really feel like I’ve had to kind of create that myself. I don’t feel like there was a very good resource when I was coming up for trying out a whole bunch of different jobs and just seeing what they are, seeing what they entail.

That’s the whole point of this podcast. It’s to talk with these women who’ve been there, done that, or are currently doing it, and just find out what advice they have. What they would recommend for young girls who might be interested in being a lawyer. What is the time commitment? What is the education commitment? How do you get there any way?!

I hope that you will enjoy listening to the interviews that I conduct with these women. They are fascinating, genuine, wonderful human beings and all they want to do is give back to the next generation and help other people find the happiness and fulfillment that they have found in their careers.

Support the Show

Would you like to show your support for the show? I’d love to have you join the growing community of backers at Patreon.com/AnnaDoo. Here you’ll be able to have access to a patron-only news feed, monthly Q & A sessions, and lots of insider information that you just can’t get elsewhere saved especially for those who are able to financially support this show. I’ll see you there and thank you so much for your support.

Career Talk with Working Women is the best career planning resource for young girls

We are always telling little girls they can be anything they want to be when they grow up; but then we show them actresses, pop stars, and princesses in much of the media surrounding that statement. I’ve done some searching and have yet to find a good resource that presents real women in a variety of careers in a manner consumable by our young ladies.

This is not to say there’s a dearth of female-focused girl-power spaces online right now! There are some amazing websites and organizations showcasing notable women who’ve done some incredible things. I jumped at the chance to purchase the book Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls
and read a biography to my 3.5 year-old daughter each night. The book is full of women who have grabbed hold of their talents, positively reacted to their individual circumstances and done some extraordinary things with their lives!

A Mighty Girl is a website that houses a wonderful pile of curated toys, books, and movies for girls. Love this resource for all things mighty!!

But it’s hard to picture yourself in their high heels.

Career Talk with Working Women fills the gap

I want to share the stories of the women in my community who are approachable, are tangible, are not in the news or on the global stage. Rather, they are simply living out their lives, being members of their tribe and community, working a job they may or may not love to provide for themselves and their families. Women who are interested in and willing to share the good, the challenging, and the raw reality of their careers and lives in order to better prepare our young girls with factual information as they embark on finding fulfilling careers for themselves.

That’s what Career Talk with Working Women is all about. Regular women who are quietly living out their lives in careers they enjoy and find fulfilling. Women who care about the next generation and see the dire need to educate our children on all the possibilities available to them. To provide the down and dirty reality of the amount of education, the expected hours of work, the potential for a work-life harmony for each career and the financial compensation that comes with them.

Join me on the trek!

I’m on a mission to interview as many women as I can and then compile and share their stories with you, your teenagers and your young girls who are just beginning to be asked – what do you want to be when you grow up?

If you are interested in participating, please send me an email at anna@careertalkwithworkingwomen.com. I need women to interview as well as sponsors to fund this ongoing project, any amount helps.

No more fairy tale fluff!™