Almost nine in 10 people actively seeking economic empowerment – Herbalife Asia Pacific Survey

Herbalife, a premier health and wellness company, released the findings of its latest Asia Pacific Economic Empowerment Survey, which showed that almost nine in 10 people (87%) are currently taking steps to become more “economically empowered”. The top actions taken include learning about personal finance, setting clear financial goals, investing in education and skill development, and starting a business or side job.

Commissioned by Herbalife and conducted by OnePoll, the survey defined “economic empowerment” as providing people with the education, training, and skills that they need to find a job, earn an income, and become self-supporting. A total of 4,500 respondents from Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam participated in the survey.

More than one in two (56%) said that their standard of economic empowerment has changed in the past five years, as a result of the pandemic and rise in inflation. Some of the main barriers to achieving economic empowerment were a lack of resources to invest in ideas, not having the right skills for growth in a job, and limited access to credit, money, or other financial services.

Additionally, there was strong sentiment (72%) that starting one’s own business or doing freelance work felt like the only way to become economically empowered.

“Recent years have made it harder to achieve economic empowerment amidst inflation, business closures and a tougher lending environment,” said Stephen Conchie, Herbalife’s regional president for Asia Pacific. “As economies struggle to recover post-pandemic, providing solutions toward economic empowerment is critical.”

“In today’s shifting employment landscape, there are a number of opportunities available for individuals looking to achieve economic empowerment by starting their own business. Direct selling, in particular, offers the possibility to start a business at low cost, whilst being supported by ongoing training, resources and a like-minded community,” said Conchie.

According to the findings, economic empowerment varies by country. At least one in two respondents from Vietnam (51%) said that it was easier to become economically empowered where they live compared to other countries. In Malaysia, Taiwan, Indonesia and Philippines, the percentage was 48%, 48%, 41% and 36% respectively.

The factors holding respondents back from being economically empowered included:

  • I don’t have the resources I need to invest in my ideas — 40%
  • I don’t have the right skills for growth in my job/to get the career I want — 34%
  • Limited access to credit, money, or other financial services — 31%
  • Lack of opportunities for education/additional education — 25%
  • I grew up in a lower-income household — 23%

Key actions taken by respondents to be more economically empowered included:

  • Educating myself about personal finance, budgeting, investing — 67%
  • Setting clear financial goals, including saving money regularly and/or paying off debts — 61%
  • Investing in education and skill development that aligns with my goals — 46%
  • Starting my own business/starting a “side job” to diversify where my income is coming from — 43%Take care of my physical and mental health — 39%
  • The survey also revealed the differences in how Gen Zs and Millennials viewed economic empowerment compared to other age groups:
    • Gen Zs and Millennials (79% and 84% respectively) were more aware of their economic empowerment in the past five years, and a higher majority of them (86% and 89% respectively) are taking steps to improve their situation
    • Gen Zs and Millennials were more likely to view starting a side job or their own business as the only way to become economically empowered
    • Top two reasons making it more difficult for Gen Zs and Millennials to become economically empowered were social position and education level


Economic empowerment survey methodology:

This random double-opt-in survey of general population respondents from Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam — was commissioned by Herbalife between Sept. 28 and Oct. 2, 2023. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose team members are members of the Market Research Society and have corporate membership to the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).

Written by dotdailydose


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