COF 60: Setting SMART Financial Goals with Steven M. Hughes

Steven Hughes Know Money Inc on the Carry On Friends Podcast

Steven M. Hughes is a Caribbean American social entrepreneur, and financial literacy advocate. Steven is of Jamaican parentage and is based in Columbia, South Carolina. For the past six years, he has empowered thousands of people — equipping them with knowledge and tools to develop their financial foundation, set and achieve their goals, and most importantly, take action to make positive life changes through his keynotes and workshops.

In 2014, Steven also founded and launched Know Money, Inc., a 501(c)3 nonprofit that teaches youth and young adults how to manage their money and build sustainable businesses.

After making every money mistake imaginable as a student at Clemson University, Steven took massive action over the course of the next four years to improve his financial situation. He’s now a nationally Certified Financial Education Instructor, and he’s also been appointed to the Global Shapers Community by the World Economic Forum, based in Geneva, Switzerland.

In this episode, Steven explains how money is an emotional decision and the difference between Dream Money Statements vs. SMART Financial Goals.


Kerry-Ann’s Episode Takeaways

  1. We’ve been taught about money that it’s a logical decision vs money being an emotional decision.
  2. We have to connect the emotion underlying our money habits.
  3. Good financial habits come from understanding the emotional decisions we make when it comes to money and creating good money habits.
  4. Dream Money Statements vs. SMART Financial Goals.
    • Stay away from broad sweeping financial statements. If you do, they must be broken up into smaller, more manageable and Actionable goals
    • One good money habit is setting financial goals and being clear about those goals are.
  5. If you have a side hustle and a full-time job co-mingling of money doesn’t allow you to see your financial goals for the side hustle. Therefore we need to have separate bank accounts.
  6. We shouldn’t be paying Banks to access our money. So find options to do away with monthly fees. Especially as a solopreneur, freelancer, side hustler you want to keep your overhead as low as possible.
  7. PayPal is not your bank
    • PayPal is the processing system that allows us to transact any type of sales. It’s like a bridge and our money shouldn’t be left there.
    • Money left in PayPal not insured.
    • Money collected via PayPal should go to business checking account.
  8. We should automate our savings:
  9. Gmail account for bills and financial statements


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    Personal, nuanced, and layered discussion of being Caribbean and Caribbean American. Love it!

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    My experience interviewing with Kerry-Ann was fabulous. Love what she is doing on the show and think that she has a unique gift for pulling out gems while still staying true to the Caribbean Spirit of the podcast! Would highly recommend to my fellow Caribbean Americans 🙂

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    A few outliers are cool but Kerry-Ann sheds light on some lesser known successful Caribbean American entrepreneurs. Excited about the interview series.

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    First, let me say that Kerry-Ann is very eloquent and has a wonderful voice for the radio. I listened to her segment on accountability and goal setting. This couldn't have come at a more perfect time; I recently lost my job and felt as if I was accomplishing none of my goals. For the rest of the month, I have a series of goals now that I hold myself accountable to achieve as well as being someone's accountability partner as he makes his way through technical with a few hurdles in the way. I must say I haven't felt this refreshed in a while! This is a great podcast, and my friends think so too!

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    Genuinely enjoyed the latest episode on goal setting, especially the emphasis on actually achieving them too.

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