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Money Matters: Financial Inclusion for Business Growth

Lista kicked off this week with a lively event held in partnership with our good friends at Adobo Magazine. We invited a panel of esteemed content creators to come together for a special edition of adobo Talks in which they shared powerful insights regarding personal finance, savings and financial planning. Once again, we’d like to thank Mommy Gracie of Tipid Mommy, Coach Yani Moya of Peridot Consulting and Antonette Aquino of Money Health Check for their invaluable input, as well as our charming host MM Gigante.

The conversation began with Lista’s cofounder Aaron Villegas highlighting our continuing mission to improve the financial literacy of the Filipino people, fostering growth in an economy that is gradually recovering from the pandemic. Through tailoring our service to meet the needs of our users, we aim to provide an application that is easy to download, navigate and use. We are proud of the community our users have built together across different social media platforms, one whose members are eager to learn and share valuable tips on business and savings.

Our panelists certainly had many gems of advice to offer them during our Q&A session. Here are a few choice tidbits from the event for all you go-getters out there:

1. What is the most challenging aspect of saving money?

Mommy Gracie: "As a freelancer the no. 1 challenge is the inconsistent income flow...if it's hard to save for those with fixed income, mas mahirap sya for freelancers..."

Coach Yani: “When I finished college and started working I got super excited with short-term activities, with my gastos...that’s what I’ve also noticed [with Filipinos] ...hirapan sila mag-save simply because they now are excited to use their money...the challenge is that people don’t really set long-term goals...”

Antonette: “For the majority, it’s simply starting...more so, being consistent at it ...I only realized the importance of it when, back then, my family went into debt. So we lived on borrowed money...yung pambayad naming sa utang ay utang yung nag-motivate sakin to start saving...

2. What sparked the need to use Lista?

Coach Yani: “I learned about Lista app when they reached out to that time I was starting a new business...wala pa kami talagang tracker, wala pa kaming listahan of anything...I said: “It’s perfect for my new business!” ... the app will remind your supplier or your customer...super happy ako because it made our startup business to track and to manage.”

Antonette: “Prior to using Lista I was more of a pen and paper type person... I’ve always believed that when everything is listed down instead of running the numbers in your can definitely increase your savings you navigate the app, you realize that it really cuts out the hassles of tracking expenses which overall saves you time...”

Mommy Gracie: “...I’ve used the traditional method din...however, since I am a work-from-home mom, I don’t always have the time...big help sakin na sa smartphone na sya, tas user-friendly pa...”

3. Which feature of the app do you like the most?

Antonette: “What makes a great app is simplicity...navigating the app [Lista] is very easy for beginners...yung second feature naman that also attracted me to the app was the invoice generator...I used to work as a freelancer back then and very important for us yung mga invoicing...” Mommy Gracie: “Dapat user-friendly sya especially sa mga nanay, hindi naman kami masyadong ma-techy...kaya very helpful sa mga newbie at mga moms...” Coach Yani: “...the debt reminder. As Pinoys, we have a belief around getting or asking for our money...nahihirapan tayo singilin yun [utang], nahihiya...what I like about Lista...yung mangutang yung mahihiyang di magbayad because there’s an app reminding you na “hey, nakalista pa yung utang mo, you should pay it.”

4. What is the lesson, if you could only teach one, about financial literacy you would like Filipinos to learn?

Coach Yani: “I would always teach unlearning negative beliefs around money. Because no matter how much money we make, if we have negative beliefs around money...then we will be stuck in a rut...for me it’s the money mindsets, the limiting beliefs and unlearning all the negative beliefs around money.”

Mommy Gracie: “For me, stewardship...yung finances natin is part of being a good steward, and knowing that we are only stewards and managers we will be better spenders, better savers and better investors.”

Antonette: “I took this concept from the book Atomic Habits by James Clear: “You rise to the level of your systems, you don’t rise to the level of your goals.” Meaning, a lot of us tend to set goals...but then at the end of the day it’s our systems that bring us there. It’s the habits you do every’s the values that you take one to develop your character...”

To our viewers who took part in the event, thanks for tuning in and leaving such nice comments! If you’d like to hear all the advice our panelists had to offer, be sure to check out the full recording with this link:

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