This is a guest post from ESI of ESI Money, a blog about achieving financial independence through earning, saving, and investing (“E”, “S”, and “I” — get it?). It's written by an early-50s retiree who achieved financial independence, shares what's worked for him, and details how others can implement those ideas in their own lives. (Note: ESI is also the owner of Rockstar Finance, the leading curation site for top personal finance articles.)
You've heard it a million times before: To build wealth, you have to spend less than you earn. It's a great piece of advice — one of my favorites, actually. Too often, however, people take this to mean simply “control your spending”.
While your spending is certainly part of the equation, there's an equally-important component: your earning.
Here's what I think a lot of people miss: It's easier to spend less than you earn when you earn more. It's also easier to reach your financial goals. From my experience, the best way for most people to earn more is to grow their careers. Today I want to show you five ways to grow your career so that you make more money and enjoy greater job satisfaction.
The Case for Career Growth
I know, I can hear the collective groan.
For myriad reasons, many people dislike advice about growing their careers. It's probably because so many hate their jobs.
I get it. I've been there myself.
But I also understand that there's a paradox between hating a career and achieving your money goals. If you hate your job so much that you don't want to focus one extra second on it, you will actually prolong the time you need to work — the very thing you hate so much!
Instead, if you put a bit of time and effort into growing your career, you'll end up making millions more (literally), hitting your financial goals earlier, and (very likely) enjoying your career more.
If I were able to give you a few, simple, easy-to-implement tips to help you achieve this, would you be interested?
How Can I Be So Sure?
Before we get to the tips, let's address the elephant in the room: How can you be sure that the Bozo writing this piece can actually deliver?
In all honesty, you can't. But I do have a few accomplishments that might give you some confidence:
- Personal experience. I was able to grow my income by 8.16% per year throughout my career. Obviously people have done much better than this, but 8%+ isn't too shabby over almost 30 years. If you don't believe what a huge impact this can make, pick a starting salary and increase it by 8% each year for 28 years.
- Corporate experience. In addition to managing my own career, I saw countless colleagues and subordinates managing (or, mostly, not managing) theirs. I eventually became the president of a $100 million company, supervising the careers of hundreds of people. So along the way I learned a bit about growing your career, how to get ahead, and how companies view employees.
- Education. There are thousands of books (and millions of web pages) about career management. I've read many of them and tried a variety of techniques. I will say that most of them are virtually worthless, but there are some nuggets of wisdom that I've applied and learned from.
- Millionaires do it. I've interviewed over 30 millionaires (and more on the way.) Almost every one of them has developed a high income by applying the skills below which have accounted for a large part of their success.
The good news is that you can do even better than I did. It took me decades to come up with the tips I'm about to share. Most of them were discovered in the school of hard knocks by trial and error. You can cut out the pain of failure and get right to doing what counts.
You can also skip the thousands of tips you might gather from here and there. Simply apply the five steps below and you'll get most of the impact for a fraction of the work.
With that said, here are the five tips you can use in 2018 to grow your career… [Read more…]