From Nancy Drew Mysteries to solving financial problems: Elaine Bechthold’s Path to Financial Empowerment
Empowering Individuals and Businesses with Money Measures Inc.
Elaine Bechthold is a passionate advocate for personal finance management and the creator of Money Measures, an innovative budgeting app designed to empower individuals and entrepreneurs and help them navigate financial challenges.
Unknown to Elaine at the time, part of the journey that led to the creation of the web app happened in her mid-20s when she found herself lacking the down payment necessary to purchase a house. Determined to change her own financial situation, Elaine realized that she needed to revamp her budgeting and spending habits, sparking her eagerness to learn different ways of handling money.
Early Experiences and Financial Services Career
Elaine’s journey towards creating Money Measures was shaped by her passion for learning, mathematics, and the interconnectedness of paperwork, books, and continuous education. As she observed the office assistant in her elementary school, her town’s librarian, and many teachers hard at work, she recognized the integral role they played in enabling her own personal development. Inspired by their dedication, one of her goals became to work hard for others and make a meaningful impact in helping them on their own paths of growth and achievement.
In high school, faced with the decision of pursuing nursing, teaching, or office work, it became apparent that the best fit would be office work. Her ultimate goal was to work for Mutual Life, a renowned company in the financial services sector. Persistence paid off, and she started working at Mutual Life in 1985. Prior to working at Mutual Life, Elaine also worked for Dominion Life.
Once she secured a position at Mutual Life’s head office in Waterloo, Ontario, Elaine eagerly embraced opportunities for learning and growth. Throughout her tenure in Commission Administration, Product Research and Development, and Competitor Intelligence, she gained valuable insights into the fluctuations of income for agents. These firsthand experiences would play a pivotal role in shaping the essential features she considered a must for her app.
The Birth of Money Measures
In Elaine’s 40s, an opportunity emerged for her and her husband to expand their farm operation by purchasing a second farm. A feasibility study for purchasing the second farm was done and included leveraging her self-made and well-established cash flow forecasting system, which provided a clear picture of the impact the purchase would have on the operation’s cash flow. The second farm was purchased. It increased the operation’s revenues and provided a passive income from renting the house on the second property. This pivotal moment showcased not only Elaine’s financial expertise but also her unwavering determination to overcome potential obstacles. Through this experience, a key feature of the Money Measures web app was inspired, namely the concept of ‘green light, yellow light, red light budgeting.’ This concept was pivotal in the decision-making process for purchasing the second farm and continued to play a crucial role in maintaining good cash flow within the farm operation.
Motivated by her desire to assist others with their budgeting and transform her approach into a software solution, Elaine initiated conversations with individuals who recommended seeking assistance from Communitech. Engaging with Communitech, Elaine commissioned them to create a prototype of her app, gradually realizing her dream step by step.
Money Measures: Empowering Financial Confidence
The successful acquisition of the farm boosted Elaine’s confidence in her unique budgeting approach, especially in her forward-looking process of identifying challenges and opportunities. Her overarching goal was to assist individuals with various aspects of their finances so that they could put the pieces of the puzzle together in their own financial journey, allowing them to see the big picture. She endeavours to bring clarity to those needing help with debt management, saving for home purchases, navigating fluctuating incomes and expenses, and funding business growth. Elaine’s choice to achieve this goal was to have the Money Measures web app developed.
Adding Structure Where None Exists: Control What’s in Our Control
Elaine Bechthold doesn’t subscribe to the common view that most financial matters are beyond our control. She has a history of streamlining and improving processes. The most impactful achievement has been identifying a process that can be used to manage the very real financial challenges that people face in life.
Elaine Bechthold continues to drive change in the field of finance management, leveraging her experience, expertise, innovation, and passion to help individuals and organizations gain financial confidence and achieve their goals. Her dedication to providing accessible and impactful budgeting solutions has the potential to positively impact the lives of countless individuals and the very real challenges being faced, entrepreneurs launching their businesses, and families wishing to provide financial literacy to their children.
Elaine’s system for budgeting can add the much-needed structure that people need to manage money. Through her innovative app, Elaine has provided solutions that bring order and clarity to financial management, even in situations where traditional structures may not be readily available.
On a More Personal Note: Elaine Can Sing and More!
Elaine’s vibrant spirit extends beyond the world of finance. She has a passion for music, and her favorite female vocal artists are Whitney Houston and Celine Dion. Her favorite pastimes include bowling, coaching a t-ball team, and engaging in sports like hockey and baseball. Despite her belief that she could be the lucky charm for the Toronto Maple Leafs, she has yet to attend a game.
Not only does she excel in her personal pursuits, but she also dedicates herself to supporting meaningful causes. Elaine is a proud supporter of the Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child program, an international initiative bringing joy and hope to children in need during the holiday season. Additionally, she’s a financial supporter of her local Stuff a Cruiser program which gathers toys for children at Christmas to ensure that every child experiences the joy of the season and makes sure no child goes without.
Beyond her personal interests and charitable endeavors, Elaine’s caring nature extends to her community. She is dedicated to helping others and utilizes her resources to raise awareness about her web app, aiming to positively impact the lives and businesses of others, just as it has transformed her own. With a heart filled with empathy and a genuine desire to make a difference, Elaine is committed to empowering individuals and fostering success.