Women and their retirement future Advice for businesses in light of #metoo Movement
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WHAT’S 4 LETTER FROM THE EDITOR 7 failure
How to overcome your fear of failing.
9 background checks
Be well advised when executing employment background checks.
Advice for businesses in light of the #MeToo movement.
Concerns women have about their future.
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15 Procrastination The positive side.
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WOMEN AND THEIR RETIREMENT FUTURE ADVICE FOR BUSINESSES IN LIGHT OF #METOO MOVEMENT
Experience. Compassion. Results A Majority Woman-Owned Law Firm
•Estate Planning/Elder Law
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5 cover story Deb Pajak, CFP ®, ChFC®, CLTC, CDFA™, CFBS, and partner with uFinancial Group, stands outside her office in Mechanicsburg. Although Pajak didn’t start out in the financial world but rather earned a degree in social work, she finds helping clients plan for retirement rewarding. She is a people person and works hard to help them understand their options and to create a financial plan that sustains them through life.
635 N. 12th Street, Suite 101 Lemoyne, PA 17043
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appy Fourth of July! We are fortunate to live in the land of the free and the home of the brave, because of the dignity and courage of men and women in uniform. I hope you make some happy memories with friends and family this Fourth while you enjoy watermelon, fireworks, hamburgers and hot dogs, salads, and whatever your special picnic food is. Do you ever find yourself stuck at start? Meaning, you’d like to do something—go back to school, change jobs, start a diet, give up smoking, etc.—but you don’t. Why is that? Are you afraid that if you fail, it will define who you are? Find out how you can overcome the fear of failure! Sometimes we don’t start a project because we tend to procrastinate. Is that always bad? I occasionally find that I work better under pressure. Do you think that sometimes it looks like you’re procrastinating, but you’re really ruminating on how you want to accomplish a task? Read more about the positive side of procrastination and take a quiz to find out your procrastination personality. There has been a lot of talk lately about sexual harassment in the workplace. People we looked up to,
July 2018 Vol. 15 - No. 7
PRESIDENT AND PUBLISHER
Donna K. Anderson
celebrities we watched on television, political leaders who thought they were perhaps above the law ... the list of betrayers goes on and on. A local attorney talks about what can be done to prevent workplace sexual harassment and what to do if you experience it or you see it happening. Human resource professionals should take heed to the advice offered in the included article about executing employment background checks. There is a certain point in the hiring process when the background check should be performed; learn what the regulations are regarding the information revealed in the report. There is also a fair-hiring trend that has taken hold called ban-the-box. Find out what it is. There are a couple of deliciouslooking summer recipes inside. They appear to be quick and easy, so you may want to give them a try. Enjoy the summer!
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The Importance of Planning Ahead By LYNDA HUDZICK
eb Pajak didn’t set out to become a certified financial planner, but she did always have “a desire to help people,” she said. A graduate of Penn State with a degree in counseling and social work, her initial career was not in insurance and finance. “My journey to becoming a CFP was rather circuitous, as is the case with many moms who step away from the workforce for a period of time,” Pajak said. After staying home until her boys were a bit older, she was ready to reenter the workforce, and that was when she “realized that I could
combine my love of finances with my love of being of service, so the financial planning role seemed like a perfect fit.” Pajak holds a variety of designations in the field of financial planning and is a registered representative for MML Investors Services LLC. She is also a partner in her firm, uFinancial Group, where she focuses on estate planning, investment/portfolio analysis and design, asset allocation strategies, and other financial services. Her days are full with client appointments and planning sessions. “I do a great deal of my business in the area of retirement planning,”
Pajak said, “both the accumulation phase when clients are still actively working and the distribution phase when clients want to make sure their assets will last and provide adequate income for their golden years.” Pajak works hard to make what can often be a very complex process as simple as possible for her clients, helping them understand how to accomplish their individual retirement goals. “Seeing someone benefit from our planning and truly enjoying their retirement is the best outcome and compliment for my work,” she said. Of course, there are days,
particularly when the market “swings in both directions,” that can be stressful for her clients, and although she makes it clear that it’s a natural part of the market cycle, it isn’t always easy for her clients to accept. “Helping my clients stay focused and committed to the plan we have put into place is sometimes challenging,” Pajak said. Pajak is fortunate to have a dedicated staff, and that, she said, makes “all the difference” when it comes to great customer service and satisfaction. Her son, Chris, is her fulltime business manager and partner, something she considers an added blessing.
“Being able to rely on staff is certainly one of the secrets to success,” she said. As a woman in the financial planning business, Pajak is aware of the positive traits that women are often known for, such as attention to detail, empathy, intelligence, and a great capacity for caring. “These traits are those that clients may want to have in their financial planner,” she said. “While the industry may be a ‘man’s world,’ I find that many people may choose to work with a woman, and I feel that my gender is a strength.” Pajak gets great pleasure and satisfaction from helping others, and in her position as a financial planner, she truly enjoys the opportunities to celebrate with her clients. “I have helped orphaned young people navigate very difficult times, assisted widows and widowers in putting their financial lives back together … and experienced myriad joys when clients have new babies, get married, and enjoy
Pajak works hard to make what can often be a very complex process as simple as possible for her clients, helping them understand how to accomplish their individual retirement goals.
their retirement,” she said. A firm believer in giving back to the community, over the years Pajak has served on the boards of the YWCA and Wildwood Lake Environmental Center. She is also a member of the Mechanicsburg Chamber of Commerce and a past member of the West Shore Chamber and the Mechanicsburg North Rotary Club. She has also served
on the national board of Women in Insurance and Financial Services. As someone who spends her days helping others plan for the future, what kind of impact has that had on her own personal philosophy? For one thing, she is very aware that there are no guarantees in life. “I have learned that life is precious,” she said. “With all the planning that I do every day, I am still amazed at
how often our plans get unexpectedly altered, for good or bad.” Because she is so intimately connected to her clients, Pajak feels blessed to have the opportunity to help her clients through the joys and the sadness that life can bring. “I count myself as extremely honored to serve my clients and my community in my role.” • MassMutual Financial Group is a marketing name for Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual) and its affiliated companies and sales representatives. Deborah Pajak is a registered representative of and offers securities, investment advisory, and financial planning services through MML Investors Services, LLC. Member SIPC. Estate planning services are provided working in conjunction with your estate planning attorney, tax attorney, and/or CPA. Neither MML Investors Services nor any of its employees or agents are authorized to give legal or tax advice. Consult your own personal attorney legal or tax counsel for advice on specific legal and tax matters. CRN202004-229789
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~ July 2018 | BUSINESSWoman
Overcome Fear of Failure By CAROLE KANCHIER
lexa would like to establish her own business, but she’s afraid she won’t succeed. Marcia would like to return to school, but she’s afraid she might fail. Abraham Lincoln failed in business and was defeated for Congress, the Senate, and the vice presidency. Thomas Edison had 10,000 trials before inventing the light bulb. Did you learn to walk or ride a bike without falling? What’s your attitude toward career mistakes? Do you persist after making a mistake? Learn from setbacks? Or, do you hesitate to pursue challenging projects because you’re afraid of failing? Is your attitude toward your career one of mastery or helplessness? What Does This Quiz Say about You? Answer yes or no. I … 1. Downplay previous successes. 2. Believe errors are part of the learning process. 3. Choose the easiest path to avoid failing. 4. Focus on my strengths and successes rather than my failures. 5. Worry about what others think. 6. Believe success is the result of hard work and persistence. 7. Give up when I’ve made a mistake.
8. Work harder when I’ve made a mistake. 9. Am influenced by what others think. 10. Do what I think I should. 11. Believe people who work hard aren’t smart. 12. Seek challenges.
13. Believe the only thing that matters is the final product. 14. Evaluate my mistakes to identify better ways of doing things. Scoring: One point for each yes to even-numbered questions and no to odd-numbered ones. 10 or higher: You accept mistakes as part of growth. You seek knowledge and challenges and feel good about accomplishing a difficult task well. You’re mastery oriented; you focus on learning and effort. You evaluate your performance, and then do better next time. 6-9: You may view failure as part of the learning process or worry about what others think. Modify your perception of success and failure. Focus on strengths and accomplishments. Read suggestions below. 5 or lower: You fear making mistakes. When you fail, you think you’re incapable and give up. You BUSINESSWomanPA.com
Put faith in your own abilities to make good things happen. Let go of old ideas about who you should be.
worry how others judge you. You downplay your strengths and hold little hope for success. Negative reactions to failure start early. You can change your perceptions and motivation. Here’s how:
Attaining Career Mastery Enhance confidence. Acknowledge your accomplishments and personality strengths. Prepare a list of these and post it where you can read it daily.
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~ July 2018 | BUSINESSWoman
Reward yourself. Each morning think of something positive to do for yourself. Every time you pull through a challenging experience, treat yourself. State positive affirmations. Say, “I can accomplish this easily and effortlessly” and “I’m confident, intelligent, and caring,” or whatever you want to be. When you catch yourself saying something negative, say, “Cancel,” and replace it with a positive word or phrase. Put faith in your own ability to make good things happen. Let go of old ideas about who you should be. Own successes. Review all your accomplishments in prior jobs, school, community, and home endeavors. Remember the times you had most control. What worked best? These are the result of your efforts and abilities, not chance. How can you do more of these things every day? Think for yourself. Don’t echo others’ opinions. Say what you
mean and want. Just because others have opinions doesn’t mean yours aren’t valid. Make your own decisions. There are few wrong decisions, just different results. Persevere. Work hard. Weather the turbulence. Success comes from adversity. How can you improve your latest project? Conduct needed research. Set your own criteria for measuring your effectiveness. Maintain optimism. Develop a positive outlook. See the glass half full, rather than half empty. Reinforce the positive in yourself and others. View failure as a temporary setback. Look for and expect good things. Develop a sense of humor; learn to laugh at yourself. Emphasize task mastery. Consider money or objects as byproducts of achieving your goals, not ends in themselves. What can you do to develop a better product or service for your employer or yourself? Remember, failure is part of success. Keep trying. Instead of worrying about failure, think about the opportunities you’ll miss if you don’t try! •
Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life by Dr. Carole Kanchier offers additional tips for career mastery. Why don’t you get a copy today? www.amazon.com. See book review in Novel Ideas column, page 19.
Be Well Advised When Executing Employment Background Checks By KIM KLUGH
ttracting the most qualified candidates for the job you’re looking to fill can be time consuming. After you’ve culled through the resumes and conducted interviews with the most promising prospects, you’re ready to make an offer. Only after you’ve made a conditional offer to an applicant should you execute the next step — the background check or screening. These checks can be a useful tool in the hiring process in that they provide a preventive measure to help reduce employee issues, and they can identify persons who may be prone to various workplace crimes and acts of violence. When conducted by a thirdparty background-check firm, the screenings are referred to as consumer reports and are regulated by the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act and enforced by the Federal Trade Commission. According to the FCRA, the regulations help protect both employers and job seekers by ensuring the “accuracy, fairness, and privacy of the information contained in the files of consumerreporting agencies.” Employers need to comply with the background-check laws in their respective jurisdictions, including fair-hiring practices, such as banthe-box laws. Companies typically use a third party to conduct the background checks, says Michael Trachtman, a founder and shareholder at Powell
Trachtman P.C. Attorneys at Law in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, with an office in Harrisburg. Trachtman is also general counsel to the MidAtlantic Employers’ Association, a trade organization of over 500 companies. He says there are layers of regulations at both the state and federal levels, and as a result, stringent procedural requirements are imposed that cannot be ignored by employers and reporting agencies while conducting background checks. To comply with the assorted regulations and steer clear of discrimination claims, he says many jurisdictions integrate the best practices set forth in the 2012 U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission guidance on the use of arrest and conviction records in hiring decisions. The guidance was drafted to give a fairer shot to the growing number of U.S. adults with criminal records who are attempting reentry into the workforce and would benefit from an ease in hiring barriers and fair-hiring practices. Trachtman also recommends the EEOC/FTC publication on background checks, which can be found at www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/ publications/background_checks_ employers.cfm. Ban-the-box is an example of a more recent fair-hiring practice that was initiated to give those with a criminal record a fairer chance to compete for a job based on their qualifications, without the blemish of a conviction front and
center on the application form. It’s a pivotal component of a national campaign that calls for removal of the question and check box, “Have you been convicted by a court?” from employment applications. Trachtman says ban-the-box helps decrease the negative impact on particular nationalities, racial groups, and minorities as they seek employment despite a criminal record. Nationwide, as of March 2018, more than 150 cities and counties, including some in Pennsylvania, as well as 31 states, have ban-the-box
laws that restrict employers from asking job applicants about their criminal history until later on in the hiring process. Due to the range of FCRA obligations placed on employers and reporting agencies and the fact that laws and requirements can vary from state to state and city to city, Trachtman says, “The reporting agency you choose to do the background check must be reputable and know what it’s doing.” Likewise, the employer must certify to the reporting agency they’ve enlisted that they will also
comply with the law from their end. For example, there must be written authorization from the applicant to conduct the report. “The background check is a timing issue,” Trachtman says, “and unless a conditional offer of employment has been made, the employer cannot make any inquiries regarding criminal history, even in the interview.” This way, the applicant has the chance to favorably impress a potential employer before a full history is disclosed that may or may not unfairly influence the hiring decision. Consumer reports obtained for background-check purposes can be more than just credit reports or checks of criminal history. They may also assess an individual’s character based upon general reputation, personal characteristics, and mode of living. An investigative consumer report is obtained through personal interviews with neighbors, friends, or associates. Trachtman says if the reporting agency searches for more than the individual initially authorized, such as personal interviews with the applicant’s neighbors, the individual must be informed in writing as to the nature and scope of the investigation. Employers must also be aware of the specific regulations that determine what can be done with the information that’s revealed in the report. Trachtman says the employer must provide the individual with the requisite form in which the findings are presented. The individual is then afforded the
opportunity to dispute the results if they so choose. This option is in place because criminal and other records may be erroneous, inaccurate, or outdated. A reason for either denying employment, a raise, a promotion, or for firing an employee based on consumer report findings by a third party is referred to as an adverse action. A statement and a copy of the findings must be given to the applicant in the
reporting agency must notify the applicant as well as any other parties with whom the initial findings were shared. Should the background check reveal a conviction, an employer must weigh the relevance of the conviction before denying employment. For states and cities with banthe-box laws, employers may deny an applicant based on a criminal record only if the individual poses
These checks can be a useful tool in the hiring process in that they provide a preventive measure to help reduce employee issues, and they can identify persons who may be prone to various workplace crimes and acts of violence.
instance of adverse action. Should an applicant receive written notification that an adverse action is pending, that is, the background search resulted in findings that could lead to a denial of employment, the individual must be given a reasonable amount of time to respond and/or dispute the findings with the third party that conducted the search. In a dispute, according to Pennsylvania law, the agency must then conduct a sufficient investigation. Should the inquiry reveal that the initial report was erroneous or incomplete, the
an unacceptable risk to the business or to other employees. Accordingly, Trachtman says a fair assessment should be made to determine whether or not the criminal record increases the risk of something going wrong if the individual is hired. Trachtman describes this as a “difficult area” and says that in Pennsylvania there is a separate statute prohibiting an employer from using background-check information to deny employment to an individual unless the information deals with suitability of the individual for the job.
For example, if an individual is denied a janitorial position due to findings that attest he or she stole a small amount of money, it may not necessarily be used against the decision to hire for this job category. On the other hand, if a CFO applicant had been convicted of embezzlement, that conviction could be directly related to suitable denial of employment. Similarly, Trachtman explains that an individual with an assault record may not be deemed a good hire for a delivery driver position. Because the standards can be vague or confusing, he says it’s a good idea to seek counsel when there may be an inconsistency between the FCRA guidelines and an applicable state law. “The upshot,” Trachtman says, “is to look at the individual circumstances and ask to what extent does the offense relate to the job category.” In Pennsylvania, if an individual is rejected from employment due to the report’s contents, the employer must send the decision to the individual in writing along with a copy of the background report issued by the reporting agency. When striving to comply with the laws regarding employment background checks, Trachtman offers the following guidance: “Deal with a reputable reporting company; deal with counsel; recognize there are requirements; know when and how you can use forms and notices; and lastly, be well advised. You don’t know what you don’t know, and ignorance of the law is not an excuse.”
~ July 2018 | BUSINESSWoman
Advice for Businesses in Light of the #MeToo Movement
By THEA A. PAOLINI
he past six months or so have seen a dramatic uptick in the visibility of sexual harassment cases in the workplace. This comes partially as a response to the solidarity women have felt thanks to a hashtag encouraging people to share their stories of workplace sexual harassment: #MeToo. As a business, it is important to understand how this may affect day-to-day operations and even the bottom line. Studies have shown that sexual harassment in the workplace costs American companies and government organizations money in turnover costs, sick-leave pay, and reduced productivity of employees, in addition to legal liability. This article aims to shine some light on what can be done in a particularly sensitive societal climate to realistically prevent workplace sexual harassment and how to deal with it should sexual harassment be brought to management’s attention. Sexual harassment can be perpetrated in two different ways.
First, when a superior makes a quid pro quo or “this for that” offer for an employee boon, or to prevent a negative action, in exchange for a sexual act of some kind; and second, when the employee is subjected to a hostile work environment. A hostile work environment claim is established when an employee shows that the harassment was so pervasive that it materially altered the terms of employment, and the business knew or should have known of the harassment and did not act appropriately to stop it. When a supervisor is empowered to use his or her authority given by the company to coerce sex, the employer will be held strictly liable. This liability is predicated on the idea that an employer is responsible for the acts of management and should be motivated to prevent sexual harassment. The employer may, however, be able to avoid liability in hostilework-environment cases by proving that it took reasonable care to prevent and correct any sexual harassment, and the employee failed
to take advantage of preventive or corrective opportunities put in place by the employer. Because the EEOC, the government agency responsible for handling workplace discrimination cases, and the Supreme Court have articulated their stance on what an employer must do, much of the training surrounding the issues serves to inform employees of what constitutes sexual harassment and how to avoid legal liability. These certainly are important concepts to cover in sexual harassment training, but teaching employees what sexual harassment is and stopping them from doing it are two very different things. Studies have shown that programs focusing on recognition of sexual harassment do not actually work to change or prevent harassing behaviors. So what does work? Most experts agree that a shift in company culture is necessary to truly reduce or prevent sexual harassment. Although sexual harassment can be female on male, female on female,
or male on male, the most frequent type of harassment seen is male on female. There are steps companies can take to go beyond liability prevention to reach the root cause of the sexual harassment. Studies have found that when employees see leaders in the company embracing sexual harassment awareness and training, it helps to underscore that the company is taking it seriously, instead of simply forcing compliance to check a legal box. This can be as simple as bosses sitting in as learners in the trainings. It has also been found that when men are either conducting or integrally involved with training, employees are more likely to take the issue seriously. This seems to be because if the persons statistically most likely to offend are saying “Don’t do this,” it lends an air of seriousness to the training. Another way to improve the company culture is by hiring and promoting more women into highlevel leadership positions. When women are clearly respected as
equals and leaders in a company, men are less likely to see them as vulnerable, and therefore, less likely to perpetrate sexually harassing behaviors. Another crucial piece of the puzzle is reporting. A company needs to have a clear method for employees to report harassment or suspected sexual harassment and a strongly articulated anti-retaliation policy so that they are protected when they do report. Studies have shown that most individuals who report sexual harassment end up facing some type of retaliation — some studies put this figure as high as 75 percent. The EEOC reports that almost half of all harassment cases filed are due to retaliation and not necessarily the underlying harassment, so it is very important to know how to handle a report of sexual harassment without retaliating. It has also been found that having multiple avenues to report an incident makes it more likely that people will disclose the
harassment. If an employee does not feel comfortable reporting to a certain individual, he or she must have other avenues to do so. Perhaps the most important success factor, however, is bystander involvement. When bystanders feel like they can effectuate change by speaking up against sexual harassment, the culture perceptibly shifts. This can be in the form of supporting someone a bystander sees as a victim or confronting someone a bystander sees as being in the wrong. When this type of awareness and sensitivity is encouraged, the cultural norms shift, disallowing and discouraging sexual harassment and truly preventing it from taking place. Contrarily, if bystanders feel that sexual harassment is accepted by the work culture, or that they will face ridicule or scrutiny for speaking out, they are more likely to stand by silently endorsing the continued harassment. The most successful sexual harassment prevention
programs empower the bystander. What happens if a company takes the appropriate steps to educate its employees and shape the company culture and it still has an incident of sexual harassment reported? Having a solid plan of action ready to be employed is imperative not only to make sure the accuser’s allegation is handled appropriately, but also to avoid vicarious liability on the part of the business. This plan should include how the business will carry out the investigation, how the business will aid and respect the victim, how it will discipline a person determined to be a sexual harasser, how to handle claims determined to be false, and how the business will document the investigation to protect itself and maintain confidentiality. This plan should be clearly communicated to employees, so that in knowing what to expect, the reticence to report can be dispelled. #MeToo was used almost 12
million times in 85 different countries in 2017, which reveals that what employers are currently doing to prevent sexual harassment is not working. Instead, businesses should augment current programs by taking steps to address the underlying cultural issues with a more holistic approach to prevent sexual harassment. #MeToo has jumpstarted the discussion, making now an excellent time to conduct a meaningful dialogue within your business. • Thea A. Paolini is an attorney in the Business & Employment practice group at the Harrisburg-based law firm Nauman Smith. With an MBA, she has a special interest in legal issues impacting business operations.
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Women and Their Retirement Future By LORI A. HAGY
any women have concerns about their financial futures. From gender-specific complications, to underfunded savings, to sometimes self-inflicted financial downfalls, women generally do not receive as much monthly income as men.1 Let’s try to answer some of the “why” questions. Why do women generally receive less in Social Security? First, let’s look at Social Security. Social Security helps provide financial support in retirement to millions of recipients, and the formulas that govern how much people receive in benefits ensure that women and men who have identical work records earn identical amounts from Social Security. Although Social Security calculations are meant to be “gender neutral,” there remains a wide disparity in actual benefit amounts, with women usually receiving the Social Security “short end of the stick.”2 In addition, on average, women today who reach age 65 tend to outlive men by over two years, which places extra pressure on their Social Security income and savings. In 2016, more than 50 percent of all Social Security benefits were paid to women.3 Yet when you
look at what the data shows about women’s benefits compared to men’s, you’ll discover a somewhat troubling fact: Typically, women’s Social Security payments are far smaller than men’s.4 More than half of all women receive less than $1,000 in monthly Social Security checks. In contrast, the typical man earns about $1,500 from Social Security.
The main drivers of the inequality in benefits between the sexes are5:
• Unemployment (women have a higher rate than men)
• Career length (due to childrearing, caregiving, and supporting spouse’s career)
Since women have been in the workforce for many years now, is the gap between what men and women receive in Social Security shrinking? The gap doesn’t appear to be shrinking. I cannot say with certainty, but it appears that the
• Career path (lower-paying jobs) • Unequal pay (within the same industry)
biggest disparity today is the “gender income gap.”6 According to the U.S. Census Bureau in 2014, women who work full-time made just 79 cents for every dollar paid to men. This lower pay translates into lower Social Security benefits, and because women live longer, this has a much bigger impact on their financial security. What should women be doing to make up that difference? There are several ways women can mitigate the financial effects of lower Social Security income. One is to fund their own “nest egg.” The second is to strategically decide when to take their Social Security benefits. Women should start saving and investing as soon as possible — the earlier you begin saving and investing, the more time your nest egg has the potential to grow. If available, establish automatic deductions from your paycheck into
an employer-provided retirement plan. If your employer provides a match, always set a goal to contribute at least as much as you need to capture the entire match. If your employer doesn’t offer a retirement plan, additional savings options include Traditional and ROTH IRAs. Most women are astute investors. Multiple studies reveal that women are known to plan ahead, earmark money for savings, and avoid costly, kneejerk reactions to stock-market turbulence better than their male counterparts. An ability to follow rules, maintain a diversified portfolio, and stick with a plan are key to accumulating more dollars for retirement. Female investors also appear to maintain more balanced portfolios than do men, which may potentially be beneficial during market volatility. Eight to 10 percent of women
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~ July 2018 | BUSINESSWoman
hold all of their assets in stocks, versus 10-15 percent of men. Are women more likely to attend a retirement seminar than men? Why? I find that women are interested in attending seminars, but due to juggling multiple tasks (careers, families, and other commitments), there’s very little time remaining to attend. Seminars that encourage, empower, enlighten, and guide women through their decision making (including finances) are much more powerful than the basic topic of budgeting, saving, and investing. For women who are close to retirement age, why would it benefit them to wait to receive their Social Security benefits? When to claim Social Security benefits is vitally important! Delaying the start of benefits until full retirement age (FRA) is a strategy that may increase their monthly Social Security benefits for life. A delay in taking Social Security benefits will raise monthly income benefits, and by continuing to work, the average wages on which your benefit is determined will also be higher. This helps offset a portion of the years when Social Security contributions may have been lower and/or zero. By filing for Social Security when a woman is first eligible, she is setting herself up for a permanent reduction in Social Security benefits (by as much as 30 percent) for the remainder of her life. More than 40 percent of women who elect to begin collecting Social Security retirement benefits are age 62. It’s important to take into consideration that the Social Security Administration reduces benefits for anyone who claims benefits before their FRA. It would be one thing if women generally had other significant sources of income in retirement, but according to studies, women are five times as likely as men to live
only on their Social Security income. This income shortage is exacerbated by taking the benefits early.7 When seeking out a financial adviser, perhaps a “female-friendly” adviser will provide better financial guidance for complex situations such as blended families, intergenerational issues, sudden wealth, sudden singlehood, Social Security, and other challenges that women often face. The most common traits that women ask for when seeking an adviser are honest guidance, transparency, reliability, education, empathy, and great communication. Women face significant financial obstacles on the road to retirement security, but by bringing their discipline and investment strengths to bear, they can potentially offset those challenges and set themselves up for a successful savings outcome and a satisfying retirement. • Lori Hagy is a financial advisor with Morgan Stanley Global Wealth Management in Lancaster. The information contained in this article is not a solicitation to purchase or sell investments. Any information presented is general in nature and not intended to provide individually tailored investment advice. The strategies and/ or investments referenced may not be suitable for all investors as the appropriateness of a particular investment or strategy will depend on an investor’s individual circumstances and objectives. Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, LLC, member SIPC. CRC 2130513 6/18 1. Source: www.tiaa.org/public/pdf/ income_gender.pdf 2. Source: www.tiaa.org/public/pdf/ income_gender.pdf 3. Source: www.ssa.gov/policy/docs/ chartbooks/fast_facts/2016/fast_facts16. html 4. Source: www.actuary.org/content/ women-and-social-security-1 5. Source: www.actuary.org/content/ women-and-social-security-1 6. Source: www.tiaa.org/public/pdf/ income_gender.pdf 7. Source: www.ssa.gov/news/press/ factsheets/ss-customer/women-ret.pdf
The Positive Side of Procrastination: Why You Don’t Have to Do Everything (Right This Minute) By KELLY K. JAMES
hate being indecisive. When faced with a major decision — like whether to move up to a bigger house or return to work after my son was born — I feel compelled to try to make up my mind as soon as I can. Yet I worry that I’m forcing myself to choose before I’m ready. That’s when I seek advice from my mom, whose counsel never wavers: “Give yourself time. You don’t have to make a decision today.” My mom is onto something. (Hey, she has 65 years’, four kids’, and seven grandkids’ worth of experience.) Procrastinators have always gotten a bad rap, but putting off decisions — especially hard ones — may actually pay off. Research reveals that making choices depletes your self-control, as the same area of the brain controls both self-regulation and decisionmaking. That means that making even a minor decision, like what color to paint your bathroom, may affect your ability to stick to your diet. And so-called “active procrastinators” are anything but paralyzed by BUSINESSWomanPA.com
indecision to act. Instead, they make a deliberate decision to put things off as they thrive on working under pressure.
What Kind of Procrastinator are You? We tend to think of procrastinators as being lazy or overwhelmed. In fact, they may be anything but. Researchers sometimes divide procrastinators into two types: passive and active. Passive procrastinators end up postponing tasks because they can’t make decisions quickly. Active procrastinators, on the other hand, choose to postpone tasks, focusing their attention on other things. They prefer to work under pressure and are motivated by a rapidly approaching deadline, while the same deadline makes passive procrastinators feel discouraged and pressured. (As a result, passive procrastinators are more likely to give up without completing the task.) But putting off a decision or chore may simply mean that you’re
simply not ready to tackle it yet. According to psychologist James Prochaska’s “Stages of Change” theory, people move through five distinct stages when they attempt to make a life change: precontemplation (when the change isn’t even being considered), contemplation (considering a change), preparation (getting ready to make the change), action (actually making the change), and maintenance (continuing the behavior until it becomes habit). “Basically what Prochaska says is that people have to be ready to change,” says psychologist Alice Domar, Ph.D., author of Be Happy without Being Perfect (Crown, 2009). “Maybe what people call procrastination is actually contemplation.” Several years ago, when Domar was writing a book with a health expert, she decided she needed to get more exercise. “I spent the summer thinking about it and figuring out how I was going to do it, and once school started, boom!” she says.
Now, almost two years later, she has exercised every day. “Someone might have said to me, ‘You’re procrastinating all summer,’ but no,” says Domar. “It took time to think about how I was going to do it.” Choosing Not to Choose — Yet Giving yourself time to gather information about a decision is likely to make you happier with your eventual choice. For example, if you’re making a major purchase, like a new car or an expensive television, you may want to do plenty of research on your options before you pull the trigger. Choosing not to decide for a period of time can help you find the answer to a difficult decision. “Procrastination allows the mind to search the extensive collection of information in the unconscious, where creative solutions to everyday dilemmas may surface,” says Burton Siegel, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist in Hinsdale, Illinois. “It takes time and usually requires a suspension of conscious thought or at least distraction so that the
unconscious process can work as in a background program on computer.” That process may take anywhere from several hours to a week or so. “Lots of people say they have these ‘aha!’ moments in the shower,” agrees Domar. “So, again, it may look like procrastination, but maybe your brain just needs some time to backpedal a little bit before the answer comes to you.” Too Much on Your Plate? Delaying a task or decision may also be a sign that your circuits are already on overload. “The research shows the average woman stresses about 12 things on an average daily basis, where the average man stresses about three things on a daily basis,” says Domar. “For a woman who already has 12 things she’s juggling, putting off handling the 13th may be just the right thing that she needs to do.” Another bonus? Delaying a decision may eliminate the need to make it, saving you mental time and energy. “Sometimes putting it off makes it go away,” says Domar. Say you’re asked to serve on a nonprofit committee that you’re not that enthused about, and you tell the person who asked you that you need some time to consider it. With luck, by the time you respond, she’ll have found someone else to take your place — without you having to decide whether to participate. Procrastination isn’t a character flaw; rather, it may wind up reminding you what’s really important. You wouldn’t put off taking a sick child to the doctor, but if you can’t get motivated to steamclean your carpets, maybe that’s just not a priority for you. You’ll always find time to do things you truly want and need to do. Things you put off just may not be meant to happen — at least not yet. To check your procrastination personality, please see page 23. • Kelly K. James is a freelance journalist (and Task Tackler) who lives outside Chicago with her family.
~ July 2018 | BUSINESSWoman
Treatment Options for Sciatica By AMIT R. PATEL, M.D.
ciatica is pain that radiates from your lower back to your buttock and down the back of your leg. The pain can get worse when you stand or sit. You can also experience numbness and tingling in your leg. It is commonly caused by a herniated disc pinching a nerve in the spine. This pinching can be caused by degenerative disc disease, the narrowing of the space in your spine where the nerves flow, as well as the slipping of a bone in your back (or a vertebra) over the one below it. A number of treatment options are available to address and alleviate the symptoms.
Medications Several types of medications may be used in the short term to treat persistent sciatica pain. The most common medications include: • Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen, aspirin, or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) • Muscle relaxants to ease muscle spasms • Narcotics and other prescription medications for more severe pain • Neuro-modulating medications to address nerve-specific pain • Oral prednisone tapers to decrease inflammation of the nerve(s)
Epidural Steroid Injections If traditional medications and exercises fail to provide adequate relief, there are host of corticosteroid injections that can provide targeted medication into the area of concern to reduce inflammation. The effects of epidural steroid injections last only a few months, but they can be very effective in reducing the inflammation that might cause the pain. Surgery If noninvasive treatment options have been exhausted and symptoms persist, surgery is an excellent option to remove the offending agent causing the sciatica. Based on imaging studies, symptoms, and the extent of nerve involvement, there are a variety of surgical options available. From microscopic and minimally invasive surgery to standard decompressive procedures, your doctor can help guide you to a solution so that you may function pain-free and resume normal activities.
Heat/Ice Heat and ice packs can alleviate the initial leg pain. They should be applied for about 20 minutes and repeated every two hours. Whether ice or heat work better depends on the type of pain. You can alternate the two until you find out what’s best for you.
Physical Therapy Physical therapy can work alongside medications to alleviate pain, improve flexibility, and regain strength and function. A physical therapist will guide your body with a set of specific and unique exercises designed not only to address current concerns, but also prevent future problems.
• Amit R. Patel, MD, an orthopaedic spine surgeon with OSS Health and is board certified by both the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery and the American Board of Spine Surgeons. Patel treats not only general orthopaedic issues, but he also has special expertise and fellowship training in the surgical and nonsurgical treatment of the spine. BUSINESSWomanPA.com
Women & Transition: Reinventing Work and Life By Linda Rossetti • www.palgrave.com Job loss, marriage, childbirth, empty nest, menopause, retirement — each major life event can begin a transition, an opportunity to realign your life. Women & Transition presents a step-by-step roadmap every woman can use to make transition positive and approachable throughout her life. Even with Harvard MBA and a track record of great success, author Linda Rossetti faced a wrenching transition when, in her mid-40s, she realized the career path she had
spent years building was no longer suitable or sustainable. Rossetti’s transition story, coupled with the frustration felt by millions of women with similar experiences, set Rossetti on a search for answers. Rossetti found the answers in the transition experiences of hundreds of women whom she interviewed over three years. Women & Transition was created for women to take on transition and to find a path that opens opportunity.
Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life By Carole Kanchier • www.questersdaretochange.com Change is the only certainty today. Embrace change! Dr. Carole Kanchier, in her ongoing research on job satisfaction, personal growth, and career change, observed a pattern. Adults who exhibited “quester” traits were happier, healthier, and more successful than those who did not. They possessed that “extra something” that could get them through transitions and other crises.
These quester qualities that enable individuals to manage transitions are common in very young children. Sometimes, people lose these as they age. The good news is, they can be “relearned!” Carole Kanchier wrote Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life (6 ed.) to help people understand change and empower themselves to manage change. Available on Amazon – www.amazon.com/books
My Plastic Brain: One Woman’s Yearlong Journey to Discover if Science Can Improve Her Mind By Caroline Williams • www.prometheusbooks.com In My Plastic Brain, Caroline Williams spends a year exploring the concept and application of “neuroplasticity” — the brain’s ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections — to find out whether she can make meaningful, lasting changes to the way her brain works. An experienced science journalist with access to cuttingedge neuroscience experts and facilities, Williams volunteers herself as a test subject. She seeks to improve on everyday weaknesses, such as her limited attention span and tendency to
worry too much, and then branches out into more mysterious areas, such as creativity and perception of time. Williams travels to labs or virtually meets with scientists and tries their techniques of mindfulness, meditation, magnetic brain stimulation, sustained focus exercises, stressresponse retraining, and more. She shares her intimate journey with readers to discover what neuroscience can really do for us.
Clunk on the Head: How the Holy Spirit Got Our Attention By Gina Napoli and contributing authors • www.touchpointpress.com Clunk on the Head: How the Holy Spirit Got Our Attention is a collection of true anecdotes that focus on the Holy Spirit’s presence and direct interaction with Gina Napoli and the other authors whose stories are featured in this book. When the Holy Spirit makes God’s glory known, there is no mistaking He is connecting with you. Crafted with conviction, this book comprises incredible stories of how the Holy Spirit takes so many forms, clunking
~ July 2018 | BUSINESSWoman
us over the head in creative and compelling ways. Twentyeight amazing stories from 12 authors. Editor’s Note: You may recognize Gina Napoli’s name. She is a frequent writer for BusinessWoman magazine. She also makes homemade soaps and lotions and coordinates IT projects for the Department of Defense. https://ginanapoli. com.
Crowd-Pleasing Summer Entertaining If you’re hosting a backyard barbecue, game night, or TV show marathon with friends this summer, it’s helpful to have a plan in mind before diving in. Consider these tips and recipes featuring Mrs. T’s Pierogies that can help make planning a breeze and allow you to kick back and enjoy the fun alongside your guests. • Master the Music. Set the mood as soon as your guests walk in with an upbeat playlist. • Add a Creative Twist to Your Menu. When you’re craving something real and satisfying—but want to keep things simple—reach for an option like Mrs. T’s Pierogies. Available in 16 varieties, including mini-size, these pasta shells, filled with creamy whipped potatoes, are loaded with
flavor and perfect served alone or as part of creative recipes like a Farmers Market Mini Pierogy Salad. You can also grill them up like in this Mini Pierogy Slider Kebab recipe. • Create Self-Serve Stations. Arrange a buffet-style table to allow your guests to help themselves to food. It’s a simple way to ensure you get to enjoy yourself. Just remember to provide the necessary fixings at each station. • Bust Out Some Games. Whether it’s a game night or just a get-together with friends, keep games like cornhole or bocce ball on-hand to keep your soiree lively. For more recipes perfect for entertaining, visit MrsTsPierogies.com.
Mini Pierogy Slider Kebabs Prep time: 15 minutes Total time: 20 minutes Servings: 4-6 • 1 box Mrs. T’s Mini Classic Cheddar Pierogies • 2 tablespoons olive oil • kosher salt • freshly ground black pepper • 1 pound ground beef • 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce • 1 tablespoon minced red onion • 4 deli slices Colby Jack cheese, quartered • 4-6 skewers • 14 pieces curly leaf lettuce • 7 cherry tomatoes, halved • 14 cornichon pickles
Heat outdoor or indoor grill pan to medium heat. Toss pierogies with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill 8-10 minutes, flipping halfway through. Remove. In medium bowl, combine ground beef, Worcestershire sauce, onion, salt, and pepper. Form into 14 equal-sized patties. Add patties to grill and cook 3-4 minutes per side. Add one slice of cheese to each during last minute of cooking to melt. Remove and cool slightly to handle. To assemble: skewer one pierogy, flat-side down, then one piece of lettuce, tomato, pickle, burger, and another pierogy, flat-side down, to sandwich it all together. Repeat with remaining ingredients.
Farmers Market Mini Pierogy Salad Prep time: 12 minutes Total time: 18 minutes Servings: 4 • 1 box Mrs. T’s Mini Classic Cheddar Pierogies • 1/2 cup white balsamic or cider vinegar • 1 small garlic clove, crushed • 1/4 teaspoon salt • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil • 1 large tomato, coarsely chopped • 1 medium cucumber, seeded, if necessary, and coarsely chopped • 1/4 cup red onion, thinly sliced • 4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled Saute pierogies according to box directions; place in large bowl. In small bowl, combine vinegar, garlic, salt, and oregano; whisk in olive oil until well blended. Add tomato, cucumber, red onion, feta, and vinaigrette to bowl with pierogies; toss to mix well. (Family Features)
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~ July 2018 | BUSINESSWoman
Every Hero Has a Name. Is your military hero also your spouse, child, grandchild, friend, or neighbor? Help us put a face and a name to the courageous men and women who are currently serving or who have served in any branch of the U.S. Armed Forces.
Salute to Service
is an online photo gallery honoring the military heroes in our lives.
Upload your hero’s picture, name, and information at VeteransExpo.com/salute-to-service.
Marketing and Your Business You need to get your product or service in the hands of potential consumers. Marketing does that, and it includes sales, public relations, pricing, packaging, and distribution.
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We’ll gather fresh information on marketing strategies, and bring them to you once a month in an easy-to-read e-newsletter called The Fresh Press. We won’t spam you with offers. That’s not what this newsletter is. Look for an email from The Fresh Press in your inbox or go to www.BusinessWomanPA.com and sign up to receive this FREE newsletter.
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Kim Cregan has been hired as a
Sarah Clark has been hired as property manager for Moove In Self Storage in York. Clark comes to Moove In with 10 years of customer service and sales experience.
technology consultant for DOCEO Office. Cregan will educate and provide office solutions to York County businesses and nonprofit organizations. She brings over 20 years of sales and customer service experience to DOCEO.
Kelly Thomas has been hired by Godfrey as public relations copy director. Thomas manages public relations’ writing assignments from inception to completion. She brings more than 20 years’ experience in public relations and marketing to Godfrey.
Kathryn L. Simpson, an attorney with
THIS SPACE COULD BE YOURS!
ACHIEVEMENTS & Victoria P. Edwards, an attorney
with Mette, Evans & Woodside, was recognized by Super Lawyer as a Rising Star. Edwards is a certified specialist in the practice of workers’ compensation law by the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Section on workers’ compensation law.
Mette, Evans & Woodside, was named a top attorney in Pennsylvania by Super Lawyers. This is the ninth year Simpson has been recognized for her work in business litigation. She is a frequent speaker and author of continuing legaleducation course materials.
See below regarding how to submit your achievements and/or career changes. You have worked hard to get where you are; why not share it with other businesswomen just like you!
Do you have an announcement?
Please email your announcements of career advancements and professional new hires to firstname.lastname@example.org. Electronic photos should be saved as a tiff, jpeg, pdf or eps at 300 dpi. Or mail to: BUSINESSWOMAN, 3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512. Photos sent through mail will not be returned. Please – no duplicate releases.
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~ July 2018 | BUSINESSWoman
5th Wednesday Networking Lunch 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. Held ONLY 5th Wednesdays of the year Rotating location – West Shore Area Wicked Kitchen 30 S. Main St., Mechanicsburg Mitzi Jones email@example.com American Business Women’s Association (ABWA) Camelot Chapter 6 p.m. 3rd Monday of the month The Radisson Penn Harris Hotel & Convention Center, Camp Hill Marianne Troy, President 717.802.5622 firstname.lastname@example.org www.abwa.org/chapter/camelot-chapter Lancaster Area Express Network 7:15 – 9 a.m. 3rd Wednesday of the month Lancaster Country Club 1466 New Holland Pike, Lancaster Amy Winslow-Weiss info@LAEN-ABWA.com www.LAEN-ABWA.com Lebanon Valley Chapter 6 p.m. 4th Wednesday of the month Hebron Fire Hall 701 E. Walnut St., Lebanon Penny Donmoyer 717.383.6969 www.abwalebanonpa.com Penn Square Chapter 11:45 a.m. – 1 p.m. 1st Thursday of the month Hamilton Club 106 E. Orange St., Lancaster Laurie Bodisch, president 717.571.8567 email@example.com www.abwapennsquare.org Yellow Breeches Chapter 6 p.m. 4th Wednesday of the month Comfort Suites 10 S. Hanover St., Carlisle Kerina DeMeester firstname.lastname@example.org
Women’s Capital Area Networking (WeCAN) 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. 3rd Wednesday of the month Radisson Hotel 1150 Camp Hill Bypass, Camp Hill Abeer Allen, President email@example.com www.wecanconnect.org
Insurance Professionals of Lancaster County (IPLC) 5:45 p.m. 3rd Tuesday of the month, Sept. – May Heritage Hotel 500 Centerville Road, Lancaster Krista Reed, Treasurer firstname.lastname@example.org www.internationalinsuranceprofessionals.org
Women’s Network of York 11:30 a.m. 3rd Tuesday of the month Out Door Country Club 1157 Detwiler Drive, York Laura Combs, President email@example.com www.facebook.com/wnyork
International Association of Administrative Professionals Capital Region of Pennsylvania LAN Meeting locations vary Pam Newbaum, CAP-OM LAN Director firstname.lastname@example.org 717.782.5787 www.iaap-harrisburg-pa.org Pennsylvania Public Relations Society 5:30 p.m. Last Thursday of the month Larissa Bedrick, President email@example.com www.pprs-hbg.org Shippensburg Women’s Area Networking (SWAN) Noon 1st Wednesday of the month Rotating location Lisa Mack, President firstname.lastname@example.org www.facebook.com/shipswan Women’s Business Center Organization (WBCO) A program of the York County Economic Alliance 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. 2nd Tuesday of the month September through May Heritage Hills Golf Resort & Conference Center Windows Ballroom (next to Oak Restaurant) 2700 Mount Rose Ave., York For more information on registering or membership, contact Sully Pinos at email@example.com
PROCRASTINATION from page 16 What’s Your Procrastination Personality? What about you? Do you tend to tackle tasks immediately or put them off? Get a handle on your “procrastination personality” with this brief quiz: 1. At work, you’re assigned a research-heavy project that involves a lot of details — not your strong suit. You: a. Start on it right away, to get it out of the way. b. Promise yourself you’ll begin as soon as you can clear your desk … like next week. c. Schedule it on your calendar two days before your deadline. 2. School starts next week! Do you have all of the supplies on your kids’ classroom lists? a. Sure — I bought everything in June. b. Not yet … it’s been a crazy summer. c. Nope; I do it at the last minute, when everything is on sale. 3. To decide where you’ll go on your vacation, you: a. Research, research, research to get the best deals. b. Think about it but put off deciding — it’s always hard to get
everyone to agree on a destination. c. Pick several possibilities, then book at the last minutes to get a great deal on expedia.com. 4. At your monthly book club meeting, it’s your turn to choose the title. You: a. Pick an old favorite you think your friends will enjoy. b. Say you can’t decide and ask someone else to choose. c. Ask your sister, a voracious reader, for a recommendation on the way to book club. How’d you do? If you answered mostly A’s, you’re a “Task Tackler” for whom procrastination is no problem — you like getting things done and making decisions as soon as possible. Mostly “B” answers mean you’re more of a “Passive Procrastinator,” who tends to feel overwhelmed, putting things off until the last minute. Mostly “C” answers indicate that you’re an “Active Procrastinator,” who delays tasks but thrives on deadline pressure.
Central PA Association for Female Executives (CPAFE) 1st Wednesday of each month Refer to website for the meeting location Lori Zimmerman, President 717.648.0766 firstname.lastname@example.org www.cpafe.org
Executive Women International Harrisburg Chapter 5:30 p.m. 3rd Thursday of the month Rotating location Julie Young 717.713.7255 email@example.com www.ewiharrisburg.org
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What's Inside: The Importance of Planning Ahead, Women and Their Retirement Future, Advice For Businesses in Light of #MeToo Movement, and m...
Published on Jun 25, 2018
What's Inside: The Importance of Planning Ahead, Women and Their Retirement Future, Advice For Businesses in Light of #MeToo Movement, and m...