If you still have your job….keep investing. In a few years this crash will be a distant memory and our 401k’s will have stabilized and come back. Two ways to capitalize on this global nightmare are: Invest more than you normally would in an index fund through a brokerage account (that way you can always get your money) and also take time to better yourself. Currently, I’m learning piano and finding it to be extremely frustrating and relaxing at the same time. If you continue to invest in America and yourself, you will have a generous nest egg when you need it. Stay the course, my friends. – David
I was probably 9 or 10 years old, at the local Sears with my Mom and Dad and my parents were buying a dishwasher.
My Mom was so excited about this because, you see, we never had a dishwasher. My Mom washed all of the dishes by hand every day.
My Mom was an immigrant….my Dad was in the Army and met her in Germany in the 70s. They moved to the United States shortly before I was born with my two brothers and sister, none of whom spoke English.
Having been born during World War 2 in Germany, my Mom was not afraid of work. I don’t think any German is afraid of work (insert joke here).
But America was and is the greatest country in the world and that means a housewife in the suburbs should have a dishwasher.
If I had to guess, I’d say less than 10% of the US population does NOT have a dishwasher, but it wasn’t always like that.
My Dad grew up in a small house in Follansbee, West Virginia that didn’t have hot water. His mother had to heat water on the stove and then haul it to the bathroom and dump it in the tub. They also had to get deliveries of coal for their furnace and shovel it in the house…and then constantly feed the furnace. My wife’s grandfather had to do the same thing. We’ve definitely come a long way.
Back at Sears, the salesman came over and my Dad said, “I want this one”. It was the cheapest. The salesman said, “let me show you the differences between that one and this newer model…the newer model has a sprayer on the top drawer and this model doesn’t which means your dishes on the top won’t get as clean”. My Dad, went quiet for a second and then said, “Give me the newer model.”
Why did that scene stay so vividly in my head all these years? Was it because I didn’t expect my Dad to get sold to or did I just witness the best dishwasher salesman in the Sears organization?
I honestly think it’s because the salesman was there to help the customer make a smart decision, and not to upsell.
As sales pros our job is to show the customer how they will truly benefit from our product. At this point, almost everything is commoditized, but we do have the best product at the best value and we will make the customer the happiest. What I’m trying to say is, don’t be afraid or ashamed to sell because absolutely nothing happens until something gets sold.
This is what I often hear from sales reps, “we’re drinking buddies. We got so wasted last weekend!”
They’re talking about their customers…Some of the time anyways and they’re bragging about their “epic hangovers”.
That’s your sales strategy?
I was that guy. I loved drinking, I loved hanging out and I thought I was the best sales rep on the planet.
Looking back, if anything, I lost sales and may have even lost a few years of my life too.
It’s complete bullshit that sales are made in the bar. I spent so much time with such a small handful of customers and I could’ve spent that valuable time with prospects or prospecting or even reading a book.
I completely stopped drinking a few years ago and have been selling more and more ever since because I’m able to think clearer (no hangovers), I’m able to work harder and longer (no hangovers) and I’m way healthier.
I’m not saying you shouldn’t drink at all. I’m saying I drank too much for too long and it was time and money spent poorly.
Spend your valuable time at nights with your family and when you’re able, prospecting, following up, and reading and personal development. You will make more money and you won’t be hungover the next day.
Sign up for your 401K at work, get yourself a Roth IRA, and make sure you’re saving at least 10% in 2019 with a goal of 15% in 2020 and 20% beyond that.
My 41 year old self is thanking my 31 year old self for saving and now I’ve technically become a millionaire. Most of my money is tied up in 401K’s and my equity in my house, but I’m there.
I would not have gotten there if I didn’t save.
I also could’ve saved a lot more. A LOT MORE.
Early last year I decided I wanted to simplify my financial life. I had a bunch of bills and felt like, while I was making good money on paper, I didn’t have a lot (or any) left at the end of the month.
First I cut out my lawn guy at $60/mow. He would mow my lawn roughly every 10 days from mid-April to November….20 or 21 times. That’s approximately $1200/yr saved. I’m now on my second year of mowing my lawn myself and will have saved $2400 by the end of this mowing season.
Next I sold my truck, boat, and airplane and bought a ‘98 Acura as a beater. I’m not sure this was a good idea, but I sold my truck for $6500 and bought my beater for $1000. I’d rather have my truck but I did use some of that money to invest in my children’s 529 college plan.
I really enjoyed owning an airplane, but the honeymoon had worn off and a 40 year old airplane is a money pit.
The boat was just stupid.
I got rid of Netflix but that only lasted a few months. I have it back now, but we haven’t had cable since 2006 and we don’t miss it.
I also got rid of an old refrigerator through the power company. It was using $5-$10 month of electricity, but West Penn Power took it away for free and gave me a $50 check for it. Nice!
I also feel that term life insurance is extremely important and while this added to my expenses, an additional $500K policy for $36/month is must-do for every husband. Get 10-12 times your annual income in term life.
Just getting rid of stuff is an amazing feeling. Some stuff I sold and other stuff I simply gave away. Having less stuff frees you and it feels great.
What are you doing to simplify your life?