A little humor to brighten up your day.

A fifteen year old Amish boy and his father were in a mall. They were amazed by almost everything they saw, but especially by two shiny, silver walls that could move apart and then slide back together again.

 

The boy asked, ‘What is this Father?’

The father (never having seen an elevator) responded, ‘Son, I have never seen anything like this in my life, I don’t know what it is.’

 

While the boy and his father were watching with amazement, a fat old lady in a wheel chair moved up to the moving walls and pressed a button. The walls opened, and the lady rolled between them into a small room. The walls closed and the boy and his father watched the small numbers above the walls light up sequentially.

 

They continued to watch until it reached the last number… and then the numbers began to light in the reverse order.

Finally the walls opened up again and a gorgeous 24-year-old blond stepped out.

 

The father, not taking his eyes off the young woman, said quietly to his son…..

‘Go get your Mother’

A Traditional Resume or a more Unique way of Advertising your Skills to prospective employers?

We live in a new world. One where technology tends to drive nearly every portion of our daily lives. Why not let technology take us to our next employer? Why not drop former “traditions” for more innovative ones. Many recruiting experts wonder if the traditional resume hasn’t been replaced. Especially in the age of social sites like Linkedin.

It is true that networking with potential employers has become easier now that we can connect with the world, and specifically with employment professionals. An electronic format makes it much easier for that connection to take place. Should that mean that the style and format changes as well? An interesting fact is that when a hiring manager reads a resume one of the next steps is to search online for social media pages the applicant participates in.

Is an online profile the same thing as an online resume? Many people think that it is. However, there are plenty of differences between the two. Despite the fact that LinkedIn has become widely popular and almost necessary when you’re looking for a job, job seeking still hangs on a static, “offline” resume.

To get hired you should make sure that your online profiles, as well as your resume, highlight you and the skills you posess. For that, you should know in what way are the two different.

Here are A few key differences between the resume and online profile:

* Different purpose

The purpose of a resume is to get an interview and lastly, get hired. The main goal of an online profile like LinkedIn is to network with other people from your industry and help you stay in the loop about what’s happening in your specific skillset.

Your online profile should read like a story of your skills. Make your profile a biography of who you and what how your skills have been shaped by your past experiences. LinkedIn works more like a general overview of all your knowledge, skills and experiences, while a resume should match your competences with the specific job opening you’re sending your resume for.

* Keywords

Some companies utilize an applicant tracking systems (ATS) that looks for the keywords the right candidate should have in his or her resume. Recruiters often use advanced search for keywords in LinkedIn profiles. Choosing the right keywords is much easier in resumes, since every job opening contains plenty of keywords and phrases you can use.

* Details and other information

Resume should contain only details related to the job position you’re applying for. It should be no longer than 2 pages. There is no limit to how long your profile should be. In fact, there should plenty of extra material such as links, videos, presentations or your publications. The Online world offers an excellent platform to brand yourself to a vast world of business minded people. Take full advantage of this

* Pics

Be careful about your photo selection: it should be a professional headshot, “facebook-like” profile pictures are out of bonds. On LinkedIn, you can also add a background photo to your profile. Choose one that isn’t disturbing and goes well with the industry you work in.

* Focus vs. generality

An online profile should be general. Stating comments such as “Look at what I’ve done in my career so far, this is what I can do and what I know”. Your resume should be saying: “My skills and previous work experiences make me an ideal candidate for you. Here’s how your company will benefit from hiring me.”

Not only should your resume be tailored specifically to each job, you should avoid being too general in your resume. It is important to choose the right wording and structure. Unlike in your LinkedIn profile, your resume should address the hiring manager directly and communicate a different message to the one who reads it.

Be Innovative Anticipators

What makes me unique to the IT world is my background in consultative sales and marketing. This give me the perspective of a business owner/partner to my firm as opposed to the technician that carries a toll box full of toys. Read this article from Dougtheis.com. If you or someone you know would benefit from partnering with a someone like myself that has extensive background in business development, let me know.
Business leaders want IT to be more than strategic partners. The goal now is for IT leaders to actually drive business opportunities — to be innovative anticipators. http://www.dougtheis.com/2018/02/cio-com-it-business-alignment-is-out-anticipators-are-winning-the-day/

Housing, budget deficits and your future

Depending on who is approving your new home purchase or refinance, your housing debt to income ratio can range from a 28% to over 50% of your total income. The thing to remember is that the debt to income ratio is calculated on Before Tax Income. That figure does not take into consideration your Federal or State Income Tax Rate, Your Cost of Insurance or Your Contributions into Your Retirement Plan.

This illustration shows the Debt-to-Income ratio for an average, middle class family.

Basic DTI Calc

As you can see based on these figures this family is well within the range for being approved based on income alone. But lets look deeper into the possibilities this family co

uld be facing after signing the mortgage and loan documents.

 

If they are in an average tax bracket with average benefits the take home pay for this family could be

 $3240 per month. After the First Mortgage payment is paid they would have $1740 per month. Which means they are spending over 45% of their take home pay in mortgage payments alone.

What if they are like this couple from Florida that wrote the following on Edmunds.com? Thank you! We took delivery of our 2013 Odyssey EX-L, black with truffle leather (no nav. or rear ent.), from Crown Honda in Pinellas Park, Florida, last Saturday. We walked out paying only our first month’s lease payment: $408.88/mo, 36 months, 12,000 miles/year. Total we’ll be paying over entire lease is $14,719.68! Residual value $19,030 (give or take). I think we came out good on this deal! Their $1740 a month is now $1331 and they sill have to purchase insurance and fuel for the vehicle. With gas prices in the $3.50-$4.00 a gallon price range the average full tank of gas costs around $48.00. If that is the price per week this vehicle will add $211.00 a month to the budget.

Not mentioning utilities for the house, groceries, entertainment and emergencies that can pop up as a homeowner, I think you can see that budget deficits can be controlled in our own homes. I keep hearing people talk about the US Debt, the economy and other factors that honestly we personally have no direct control over. What if we start with us?

It seems easy to justify spending $50 for an evening meal when we don’t feel like cooking. What about the price of a night out? What about that insurance deductible due after a minor fender bender?

Thoughts? I’d love to hear them.

Life Explained

On the first day God created the dog. God said, “Sit all day by the door of your house and bark at anyone who comes in or walks past. I will give you a life span of twenty years.” The dog said, “That’s too long to be barking. Give me ten years and I’ll give you back the other ten.”
So God agreed.

On the second day God created the monkey. God said, “Entertain people, do monkey tricks and make them laugh. I’ll give you a twenty-year life span.” The monkey said, “Monkey tricks for twenty years? I don’t think so. Dog gave you back ten, so that’s what I’ll do too, okay?”
And God agreed.

On the third day God created the cow. “You must go to the field with the farmer all day long and suffer under the sun, have calves, and give milk to support the farmer. I will give you a life span of sixty years.”
The cow said, “That’s kind of a tough life you want me to live for sixty years. Let me have twenty and I’ll give back the other forty.”
And God agreed again.

On the fourth day God created man. God said, “Eat, sleep, play, marry and enjoy your life. I’ll give you twenty years.”
Man said, “What? Only twenty years? Tell you what, I’ll take my twenty, and the forty the cow gave back, and the ten the monkey gave back, and the ten the dog gave back, that makes eighty, okay?”

Okay,” said God, “You’ve got a deal.”

So that is why the first twenty years we eat, sleep, play, and enjoy ourselves; the next forty years we slave in the sun to support our family; the next ten years we do monkey tricks to entertain the grandchildren; and the last ten years we sit on the front porch and bark at everyone.

Life has now been explained to you.

Compared to what?

Just because things are called the same doesn’t mean they are the same.  It depends on the rules or the game as to whether they are the same.

Look at the following scenario with a little more information. The game of golf keeps score a lot differently than the game of basketball. Though in both sports, a final score of 70 can be considered a good thing. It may not be enough win in the game.  The score is equal in both games. However the accounting and scoring of the points is dramatically different.

The same is true with the ROTH IRA. Yes, the ROTH IRA is a retirement strategy. But there are a variety of plans that fall under the heading of ROTH IRA. The structure and rules for scoring can separate greatly and still be considered a ROTH IRA under the IRS Guidelines. In the same way that golf and basketball are both sports, the similarities between the 2 sports is evident once we start to understand all the rules and nuances of the games.

Don’t assume that your ROTH IRA will give you an adequate return until you understand the rule of the plan and compare them with others available. What happens when the stock market goes sideways? Will a 10% gain continue to sustain and grow your money? Maybe.  But what if the market changes negatively?  What if if goes up 10% this year, Down 10% next year and follows that pattern over a 10 yr period. If the loss can never be more than 0% on your ROTH IRA plan, you will be money ahead.

Thank you for reading and sharing.

Anticipators are winning the day

What makes me unique to the IT world is my background in consultative sales and marketing. This give me the perspective of a business owner/partner to my firm as opposed to the technician that carries a toll box full of toys. Read this article from

By Dan Roberts and Larry WolffCIO | FEB 14, 2018 7:35 AM PT

If you or someone you know would benefit from partnering with a someone like myself that has extensive background in business development, let me know.

The journey to advance IT maturity turns out to be less about competence around technology and more about something more human, and it’s often harder to define and instill in the organization: collaborative human relationships built on trust.

The old trap was business leaders wanting to keep IT in the IT Supplier box, and we were happy in our order-taker comfort zone. Today, IT is on the offensive — moving up the Maturity Curve so we can position our companies to fight off disruption while driving transformation and disruption ourselves

maturity_curve-100749410-large

https://www.cio.com/article/3252256/leadership-management/it-business-alignment-is-out-anticipators-are-winning-the-day.html

Net Disposable Income and Residual Income. What’s the difference?

Investopedia defines Disposable Income as:

The amount of money that households have available for spending and saving after income taxes have been accounted for. Disposable personal income is often monitored as one of the many key economic indicators used to gauge the overall state of the economy.
So your disposable income is the amount of money you have on your paycheck. I have a question for you. Does your take home pay (disposable income) cover everything you need to pay for? Things like food, housing, entertainment, clothing? Do you need more money?

How much money are you generating that can be added to your disposable income? How much money are you making with your residual income?

What? Residual income? What is residual income?

Well, Residual income (also called passive, or recurring income) is income that continues to be generated after the initial effort has been expended. Compare this to what most people focus on earning: linear income, which is “one-shot” compensation or payment in the form of a fee, wage, commission or salary.

In his article titled What is Residual Income and Why Do You Want it? Craig Dewe says that Residual income comes from building an asset that continues to pay you after the work has been done. What about building your own fortune?

As Jim Rohn was famous for saying:

“I’m working full-time on my job and part time on my fortune. But it won’t be long before I’m working full-time on my fortune. Can you imagine what my life will look like?

Thank you,

#LivePowerfully

 

What to consider for your 401k

It is always a good thing to save money for the future. You will never be able to predict exactly when you will need to use it and I can tell you it is never a good thing to need money and not have  any set back when a need arises.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when saving for the future.

* Tax Deferred Accounts (401k, Fixed Annuity) should not be the first place to save for the future.

* Pay yourself first and put that money in a safe but liquid account for easy access.

* Establish a few accounts that offer a range of flexibility of earnings, safety and liquidity.

* Don’t over deposit into the 401k.

* Do take advantage of the maximum deposit your employer places into your 401k.

* Alternative Investments are not bad

* Alternative Investments are not All Good.

* Hire a coach that only has Your Interests in mind. Use your coach as a mediator when looking at new plans. Remember, Agents are Salespeople and Most Advisers are too.

* Understand Completely how your money will be used to cover FEES and Taxes.

To recap, never go alone when it comes to you money and you future and Always employ the time of a person who understands the maze of financial options available, understands your goals completely and works with you to insure that you have the Best plan to acheive your dreams.

 

Retirement pitfalls to avoid

The reason that many Americans tend to struggle financial during retirement is because it has been an accepted idea that low wage earners will struggle to live financially secure, most Americans have never taken the time to calculate how much money they will need to save for retirement and most people fail to see the importance of contributing to their employers’ retirement plans even though they will spend nearly 20 years in retirement. (U.S. DOL n.d.)

The way to change the mindset that high wages are the highest priority is to, at an early age; emphasize the importance of spending money on items that are needs instead of wants. People who prioritize on needs such as food, housing and health develop the skill of controlled spending as opposed to those that buy on a whim or spending money frivolously. People that have adopted this foundational mind set have a healthy finance life and reap huge dividends later in life. As a former financial consultant I witnessed this first hand hand. A retired school teacher was struggling to deal with a loss in her investment account after the 2008 market drop. She lost over $250,000 at the age of 84 years old and was concerned about going broke. The irony of the situation was that she had over $800,000 in the same account after the loss. She had no bills other than food, utilities, medical and transportation. When I assured her that things were fine I asked her what she did to save the kind of money she had. She told me that she never increased her lifestyle after getting her teaching job and in fact took every raise and added it to her retirement account. She lived her live like she only earned a meager income, adjusted her budget and income to cover inflation and worked like money didn’t matter. She retired with $2,000,000 in her account.  Putting money away for retirement is a habit we can all live with. Remember…Saving Matters!

  • How much money is needed should be calculated. While working it is important to maintain a budget and stick to it. Budgeting that includes reasonable live expenses such as room; board and food are the first places to start. By selecting a home that costs no more than 30% of the take home pay, a person can then look at the remaining 66% for items such as food, clothing, saving and more. In 1901 households spend an average of 23.3% on housing according to the Bureau of Labor statistics. (Bureau of Labor Statistics: 1901)

A good rule of thumb is to choose a home that is not so large that is costs more for utilities and upkeep than necessary. There is no logical reason for a single person to live in a home with 3 bedrooms, 2 bathroom and potentially more than 1000 square feet. In fact, a person living alone in this type of home is spending money for luxuries as opposed to needs.

When we looked at the housing costs being no more than 33% of take home pay, it is important to be contributing to your employers retirement account before your take home pay is calculated. By putting the maximum amount of money possible in the retirement plan a person insures that they have funds started that will be there in later years. The example earlier illustrates this fact.

The reason that many Americans tend to struggle financially during retirement is because it has been an accepted idea that low wage earners will struggle to live financially secure, most Americans have never taken the time to calculate how much money they will need to save for retirement and most people fail to see the importance of contributing to their employers’ retirement plans even though they will spend nearly 20 years in retirement. The teacher did all of the right things. She established the mindset that living a lifestyle she could afford with her first job was sufficient. She prioritized what were needs as opposed to wants, did not live beyond her means, set back the money she received on every raise, adjusted her budget to account for changes in the cost of living and retired with a large fortune.

Reference:

U.S. Dept of Labor (N.D.) http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/publications/10_ways_to_prepare.html

Bureau of Labor (1901) http://www.bls.gov/opub/uscs/1901.pdf