Recently, many people were stunned by the US presidential election results. The majority of the polls and the media got it wrong. The LA Times poll that did get it right was mocked throughout the election. Simply stated, many people just did not expect the election results to turn out the way they did. Many people had also feared an economic collapse and a stock market crash that would go along with a Trump presidency, and therefore warned others to pull their assets from the market right before the elections. However, I believe that this advice is dangerous. Warren Buffett says he is 100% optimistic about the stock market regardless of who is in office. I am in total agreement with his wisdom and believe that we should not stop investing in stocks, real estate, and perhaps most importantly, ourselves.
So, I recently turned 30 and have had some time to reflect on the lessons I’ve learned over the years. I was inspired to write this post after reading lessons from another blogger who also recently turned 30. It seemed like not too long ago, I was just a young college student starting off life on my own. Although many of these lessons may not be financial or career in nature, I feel that they ultimately will help people in those areas. Here are my lessons in no particular order. These are the same lessons I wish I could teach my 20-year-old self.
Have you ever had a rough day at work which ultimately ended up ruining your evening and preventing you from sleeping at night? Even worse, you wake up the next morning feeling unrefreshed which leads to another bad day? Well, I’m sure it happens quite often for a lot of people. It’s definitely happened to me before. Unfortunately, with our busy schedules, it is inevitable that we face times of stress and frustration. The further we push in our careers, the more times this will happen. A large part of our journeys to build our careers is to face these situations head on and figure out ways to get by them. If we want to succeed, it is necessary to face these challenges and come out stronger, wiser, and smarter.
I’ve heard of two main schools of thought when it comes to developing the right skills for your career. On one hand, there’s the belief that you need to develop highly specialized knowledge in order to land a well-paying job. For example, accountants have developed a special skill set to basically measure and disclose a company’s transactions and dealings. Actuaries have developed the ability to measure and manage risk and uncertainty. Inside knowledge of a company’s processes and procedures may also be considered a highly specialized skill. These are all highly specialized skills that take years to develop, and the market will pay a certain amount for these skills.
All throughout college, it was always instilled in my mind to network with other people. I was told to network with working professionals since it would help me get interviews, learn about different industries, learn about different companies, learn how to conduct myself professionally and ultimately help me land a job. Therefore, I reached out to hundreds of alumni through email. I tried to set up phone conversations with the ones that would respond to me. This experience allowed me to truly enrich my knowledge of different industries, companies and positions. It also gave me the confidence to interact with professionals who were more established and older than me (which certainly helped with interviews). Now that I am considered an experienced professional, I realize that it is equally important to network. One avenue for networking is through a professional association. Here are some reasons why it is extremely beneficial to join a professional association and regularly attend events.
Decades ago, many people stayed with one company their entire lives. The company would give them annual raises and provided for them in retirement through pensions or other retirement plans. Long gone are those days. In today’s world, it is common for large companies to lay off thousands of employees at a time. It is common for companies to downsize or outsource parts of their workforce. In addition, it is common for companies to give small or no raises at all, which is essentially a salary decrease after inflation. Nowadays, it is much more acceptable and common for people to move from one company to another every few years. In fact, Forbes published an article that claimed that employees who stay in companies longer than two years get paid 50% less over their careers assuming a ten year career. If your career is longer than ten years, you risk being paid even less than 50% of your potential.
Imagine walking into a new job and not getting along with anyone. Imagine being unable to do good work because you are not used to the level of bureaucracy and red tape that you need to go through. Or, maybe there are not enough processes in place for you to function effectively since you feel lost. Imagine feeling uncomfortable because you have trouble communicating in the same manner as your co-workers. Imagine feeling uncomfortable because the CEO takes on such a lax attitude about issues that you find extremely important. These are all issues of company or corporate culture, and being in a culture that you are comfortable with and thrive in is often ignored.
Are you in the market for a new home, a new car, or a new job? Would you like to get the best value for your money or the best salary for your experience? Well, I recently guest posted on a very popular personal finance and travel blog called Making Sense of Cents. In my post, I outlined some of my top negotiating tips that I have learned from negotiating products and services with large vendors in my career. I actually used those tips to negotiate the successful and quick purchase of my condo. Perhaps you can use some of the advice and general principles I have provided when negotiating your next big purchase. You can find the article here.
Today’s post is from Jessica, a professional blogger who writes for Faxage-a leading company that provides Internet fax service for individuals and businesses.
Have you ever wanted to start your own business to make some extra money? Or do you currently own a business and would like to learn more about tools that may help enhance your productivity so you can be smarter about how you spend your time? After all, many of us live busy lives and constantly have to balance our time between conflicting priorities. What if there was a way for us to get work done faster and more efficiently?
Previously, I had written a post that suggested we all focus on building our skills. However, once we have acquired wider and deeper skill sets, how do we translate that into more money? Mastering a skill set is great, but it won’t help us earn more money if we don’t know what to do with those newly acquired skills. I mentioned that the money will come in response to the skills we developed. However, how exactly does that happen? I will expand on that statement. The money will come in response to the contributions we are able to delivery due to those skills that we have developed.
Professional Development and Personal Finance Blog