Career 19 October 2016
When it comes to business, people generally treat their finances very carefully. They closely track money coming in and money going out, plan for the future needs of the business, and hire the necessary experts to help out when needed. After all, it would be a shame to squander away money your business has worked hard at earning. So why don’t people do the same for their personal finances? You wouldn’t want your business operating at break even; you want to be turning a profit. Here are four steps you can take to end the paycheck-to-paycheck lifestyle; start treating your personal finances like a profitable business.
Make Sure Your Employees Are Taken Care Of
In this case, employees are equal to you and your dependents. A business can’t run properly if the needs of its employees aren’t being met. Consider what makes a company great for it’s employees to work for and how you can treat you and your household the same: competitive salary (your savings), health benefits (making sure you can afford adequate insurance), 401k matching (making retirement saving a priority), and time off (leaving yourself enough money to enjoy your weekends or even a vacation). As soon as you start thinking about meeting those needs, you will see a shift in your mindset about why you should be selfish when it comes to your personal finances.
Talk to the people who can help you plan for your future and give you the advice you need to help ensure your success...After all, you are the CEO of your life.
Cut Unnecessary Expenditures
Every successful business shares one common thing: a budget. Why? Because without a budget, there’s no way of telling where your money is going (and if it’s being wasted) and if there’s even enough money to cover expenses (before you’ve run out). By taking the time to carefully set out a monthly budget, you are doing yourself a huge favor. A budget will not only allow you to prioritize your spending, but it will also allow you to see where you are wasting money and how to reasonably cut back on things you don’t need so that you have more to put towards important things like retirement or an emergency fund.
See The Big Picture
Another common element of successful businesses is a well thought out and researched business plan. You wouldn’t expect a business to grow from basement startup to Fortune 500 without a plan for how to get there, right? A business plan accounts for the present and future state of the business and how various financial scenarios will affect the business’s growth. Consider doing the same for your own life. Make a list of short term goals (like paying down some credit cards and planning a summer vacation), as well as long term goals like being able to afford a house and what kind of retirement you envision. Having these goals in mind and writing them down will help you to anticipate what steps should be taken to reach them.
Ask The Experts
Business owners know that they can’t manage everything by themselves, especially as their company grows. They hire secretaries, marketing associates, assistants, and salespeople. When it comes to things they only need occasional help with – like legal counsel or tax accountants – they hire outside counsel. Consider doing the same. If your taxes are on the more complex side, don’t attempt to file them on your own. You could make a costly mistake or miss out on some really beneficial tax breaks. The same goes for investing or planning for retirement. Talk to the people who can help you plan for your future and give you the advice you need to help ensure your success.
Personal finance is no doubt a daunting subject for many people. Many people feel out of control and unsure of where to start when it comes to managing their finances. But by creating an analogous scenario – in this case, looking at your personal finances like a business – it becomes much clearer what you should do. After all, you are the CEO of your life.
6 Min Read
I live the pain and stress of being black in America every day: I am a black woman, the mother of a black son, sister to black men, and aunt to my black nephews. I remember what it was like as a young girl to be afraid to go to Howard Beach for fear of being chased out. I know what it's like to walk on Liberty Avenue and be called "nigger" and being so young that I didn't understand what the word meant, I had to ask my mother. I know too well that feeling in the pit of your stomach when a police car pulls up behind you and even though you know you haven't done anything wrong you fear that your life may be in danger from what should be a simple encounter. Like all African Americans, I am tired of this burden.
African Americans have a long history of having to fight for our humanity in America. We have had to fight for freedom, we have had to fight for equality, and we have had to fight for our lives. The fight continues to go on. I have often quoted that line from the character Sophia in Alice Walker's The Color Purple, "All my life I had to fight." When I say this to my white counterparts it can sometimes be uncomfortable because it's clear that they just don't get it. They view it as melodramatic. But it's not. It's part of the black experience, and it is the part of the black experience that black people don't want.
I have often quoted that line from the character Sophia in Alice Walker's The Color Purple, "All my life I had to fight."
While I was out yesterday, passing out PPE and talking to people, a woman asked me, "What is it going to take for this to change?" I told her that I think peaceful protesting is a good start. But it's just the start. We can't elect the same people for the past 20-30 years, some in the same positions, and then talk about how nothing has changed in the past 30 years.
This injustice, inequality, and inequity will not spontaneously disappear. It will take bold, outspoken, and fearless leadership to eradicate the systemic racism in our country. We must address the violence at the hands of a police force paid to serve and protect us. We must address the recurring experience of black people being passed over for a promotion and then being asked to train the white person who was hired. We must address the inequities in contract opportunities available to black businesses who are repeatedly deemed to lack the capacity. We must address the disparity in the quality of education provided to black students. We must address the right to a living wage, health care, and sick pay.
While we like to regard the system as broken, I've come to believe the system is working exactly as it was meant to for the people who are benefiting from it. We need a new system. One that works for all of us. I am running to become the mayor of New York City because I can't assume there's another person who has the courage to do the work that needs to be done to create a fair and just city.
We can't elect the same people for the past 20-30 years, some in the same positions, and then talk about how nothing has changed in the past 30 years.
There are some things we may not be able to change in people, but at this moment I think that whether you are black, white, purple, or yellow we all should be looking internally to see what is one thing that you can do to change this dynamic. Here's where we can start:
If we want change, we need a total reform of police departments throughout this country. That is going to require taking a hard look at our requirements to become a police officer, our disciplinary procedures when civilian complaints are filed, and a review of what and how we police. No one deserves to lose their life based upon the accusation of carrying counterfeit cash. We also need to hold police officers accountable for their actions. While it is their duty to protect and serve they should not be above the law. Even at this very moment, police officers are overstepping their boundaries.
If we want change, we have to build a sense of camaraderie between the police and community. A sense of working together and creating positive experiences. We have to be honest about the fact that we haven't allowed that to happen because we have utilized our police department as a revenue-generating entity. We are more concerned with cops writing tickets than protecting and serving. Even during these moments of protest we are witness to the differences made when the police supported the protesters and stood hand in hand with them or took a knee. It resulted in less violence and more peaceful protest. People felt heard; people felt respected; people felt like they mattered.
While we like to regard the system as broken, I've come to believe the system is working exactly as it was meant to for the people who are benefiting from it. We need a new system.
If we want change, we have to be willing to clean house. And that means that some of you are going to have to step up to the plate and take roles of leadership. In my city alone, there are 35 city council seats that are term-limited in 2021. There are some that aren't termed but maybe their term should be up. Step up to the plate and run. If nothing else it will let our elected officials see that they need to stop being comfortable and do more. We don't need you out in the street taking selfies or reporting the problems to us. We need solutions. We need you in a room implementing policies that will ensure that these things don't continue to happen.
If we want change, we need to support grassroots candidates that are not in corporate pockets, who are not taking PAC money, and who really want to make a difference to their community. We need candidates that know first-hand and can relate to the experiences that many of us are going through.
We are at a pivotal moment. It is inspiring to see people from all races and backgrounds in the streets protesting, standing up for justice, and wanting to see change. We must seize this moment, but we must also be mindful that change requires more.
People often ask me why I decided to run for office? I am running for me. I am running for the little girl that was called nigger on Liberty Avenue. For the woman who has been pulled over for no reason. For my nephew who was consistently stopped during the era of stop and frisk. I am running for your son, your brother, and your nephew. I am running so that the next generation will never have to say, "All my life I had to fight." Because although we won't stop until we see justice and changes that address inequality and inequity effectively, this fight is exhausting.