Tales From The Wallet: Help! I’m in My 20s & Have No Idea What I’m Doing with My Money

Money Moves to Make in Your 20s | CorporetteWhat money moves should you make in your 20s — and what should you avoid doing?  Rhiannon Payne, editor in chief of Feminspire, reached out with a fabulous guest post on this very topic.  I think her tips are solid however old you are, particularly if you’re just starting a new career with more money (like I was at 27, my first year in BigLaw).  Thank you for guest posting, Rhiannon!  (Pictured:  Lodis Accessories Audrey Cassie Cell Case with Wristlet, available at 6pm for $36.99.)

So you’ve finally landed that amazing job, the one that pays you enough to not only cover your rent and other basic expenses, but also affords you the luxury of having money left over – money that you’re not sure what to do with. The options seem limitless. While you once had to count up the pennies in your change jar if you wanted to buy a new outfit, you’re suddenly thinking about all the exciting ways you can improve your life with your new funds. Things you would have never considered are suddenly options – a tablet for working on the go? A newer, shinier car to replace your old model? The fancier silverware sets from Bed Bath & Beyond?

This is a trap that a lot of young people fall into, especially when entering the workforce after college or going straight into the professional world in their early 20s (the latter was me – I set my sights on an industry where a degree was more of an option than a requirement, and I didn’t want to risk a negative ROI on my tuition). Unfortunately, the financial education provided to American students, in both high school and college, is generally pretty limited. When a young person starts earning a healthy income, they often have no idea what to do with their money. Thus, some unfortunate financial decisions usually occur. This is especially true for women, who not only make less (on average, $0.77 to the dollar) than men, but are traditionally given even less financial guidance than their male peers. [Read more...]

Guest Post: 360 Review: MacKenzie McHale of The Newsroom

Today’s guest post is a 360 review of MacKenzie McHale of HBO’s The Newsroom.  If you’re not familiar with them, a Corporette 360 review examines a fictional “professional” woman’s attire and critiques it from all perspectives: underling, boss, friend. Today’s guest post is from Emily Ward-Dickerman, the editor-in-chief of mock-off.com. Welcome, Emily!

If you passed MacKenzie McHale walking down the street you likely wouldn’t suspect she was a highly successful news producer. But, as the executive producer of News Night, a nightly news show on fictional cable network ACN, MacKenzie — or Mac as her associates call her — manages a team of 100+ producers, researchers, bookers, editors and controllers. Mac is played by English actress Emily Mortimer* who does a brilliant job of portraying Mac’s clumsy quirks, wide-eyed honesty and savvy instinct. Her wardrobe can best be described as simple professional –- a collection of pieces that can be found in the local mall, but nothing close to the top-trend designer clothing you might expect a television producer to sport. [Read more...]

Guest Post: How to Travel Internationally in Comfort and Style

Aeroplane, originally uploaded to Flickr by Vox Efx. Hot on the heels of our discussion about where to shop in Asia, today’s guest poster has some advice for how to travel internationally in comfort and style — and to keep your cool as a business traveler. Readers, welcome Courtney Gould Miller, a Los Angeles attorney and founder of the blog Chinaful, focusing on all things China, from law and business to culture, food, and travel. – Kat.  (Pictured: Aeroplane, originally uploaded to Flickr by Vox Efx.)

Before joining a law firm, I spent much of my time traveling Asia and Europe for study and leisure, learning new cultures and having a few mishaps along the way. As I’ve learned since joining the firm, international business travel is very different – you’ve got to be prepared and ready to work, regardless of the setting. Kat keeps us all up-to-date with the latest clothes, supplies, and technology we need as busy professional women, and I’m excited to share with Corporette readers a few of my must-haves to travel internationally for work in comfort and style. [Read more...]

Guest Post: Rush Hour Doesn’t Have to Suck

CALM LAKE, originally uploaded to Flickr by ~~~johnny~~~How do you turn rush hour into a productive, calming time?  While in the past I’ve used my subway commute to catch up on reading via Read it Later (now Pocket) or writing, guest poster Rebecca Hulse has a much more meditative, reflective take on it.  How do you spend your rush hour, readers?  Do you make time for meditation or some of the other strategies that Rebecca suggests? – Kat

On average, 50 minutes of your day is taken up in rush hour traffic commutes, either in a car or on public transportation, and most people don’t relish this time. Why the heck not? This time is mostly spent by yourself, in a space where you are not encouraged to converse with others — at any other time who wouldn’t jump with joy to have a full 50 minutes to yourself? So let’s be efficient, ladies, and multitask! (Pictured.)

So how can you turn this solitary time into quality pampering for your soul?  [Read more...]

How to Build a Professional Wardrobe for $150

Mossimo® Womens TRS Boyfriend Jacket - BlackI know a lot of readers love Target for workwear — but since I’m almost never in the physical store (and invariably rushing to look at baby stuff when I am), I jumped at the opportunity when today’s guest poster (who has no affiliation with Target) offered to round up her favorite workwear pieces.  Cassie Boorn blogs at Ask a PR Girl.  Welcome to Corporette, Cassie!

Right after college, I started working from home for a PR agency that is based in New York.  (Here is the story of how I landed that gig.) While I work at home most of the time, I spend a lot of time traveling to the city and various blogging conferences. I don’t get to see my colleagues often so I want to look good when I visit the city but I also don’t want to spend a fortune on a professional wardrobe.

The way that I keep my wardrobe fresh without spending a lot of money is by wearing classic pieces and dressing them up with bold accessories. I live in the Midwest and because I live on a budget I have a secret trick to buying classic pieces on the cheap.

What is my secret? Target. [Read more...]

Guest Post: The Fees That Eat Away At Your 401K

Erosion Control? originally uploaded to Flickr by muffinman71xx.401K fees can be such a complicated topic — so when the good folks at DailyWorth offered to guest post I jumped at the chance to have someone wiser than myself cover it! – Kat

Is your 401k plan costing you too much?

Many people don’t realize that they’re being charged a fee (or fees) for participating in their 401k plan–and over time, those fees can eat up a chunk of your savings. (Pictured: Erosion Control? originally uploaded to Flickr by muffinman71xx.)

Shocked? You’re not alone. In fact, new federal rules requiring 401k plans to be more transparent about fees take effect in July — and women everywhere should sit up and take notice.

[Read more...]