Life is all about choices. One of the areas in life that the effects of the choices you make will quite possibly be some of the most pronounced is when it comes to income – making moola! Sure, we all know that determining to be a sidewalk artist is quite different than setting out on the career path to be a Doctor and choices made while one is young often have long lasting effects BUT are there different things that we can do at any age to improve our lifetime earning potential? I say yes. Here are 3 different strategies that if executed properly will almost always lead to an increase in your lifetime earning potential:
#1 Start a Business
Uh-oh. I can already hear the excuses starting to roll in: “Starting a business is just so risky!” Well, entrepreneurial risk might not be all that much riskier than employment risk – especially if you go about it in a way that minimizes risk (i.e. continuing to work your “day job” and starting your business on the side). “Starting a business just costs so much money!” Well, maybe if you are starting a company that manufactures things and needs a large warehouse and lots of expensive materials BUT it doesn’t have to. Many companies can be started with very little startup capital. Starting a business is a great strategy for potentially increasing your lifetime earning potential significantly. Don’t let excuses stand in your way.
#2 Load Up on Degrees and Credentials
We have all heard the oft bandied about stat that people with a college degree will make somewhere close to $1,000,000 more than their counterparts without a college degree but setting aside whether that is accurate or not the Wall Street Journal recently published an article highlighting the fact that college graduates are much more likely to KEEP their job in tough economic times than those without a college degree. How’s that for an increase in lifetime earning potential? Increased future earning potential studies aside for just one moment – no matter whether you are an entrepreneur who is your own boss or someone looking for a job – having credentials and degrees is one sure fire way to at least get your foot in the door. Degrees and credentials alone won’t earn the money for you but they may just earn you that interview with a potential employer or that business meeting with that potential investor in your business. Quiz! Answer quickly – if I am introduced to you as “Joel Ohman is a Certified Financial Planner™ with an MBA… blah blah” do you think differently about me (and what I might be about to say/write) than if I were simply introduced as “Joel Ohman is a computer nerd that owns a car insurance website… blah blah” ? Chances are that learning my credentials and advanced degree certainly won’t impress you or cause you to believe anything I say carte blanche but it will at least likely cause you to want to give me the time of day and potentially listen to what I might have to say in the areas of business, financial planning, etc. … right? … maybe? … is anyone still there? guys?
#3 Get Some Specialized Training
It’s pretty common sense that as your career progresses you should have the mindset of always wanting to be learning new things (yes, “Mr. I’m-still-learning-how-to-use-the-fax-machine”, I’m looking at you) but to take it a step further be sure and attempt to learn some kind of specialized skill set that will see an increased demand in the future. Easier said than done? Maybe, but a lot of things you can spot coming if you just pay attention. If your company is making the switch to a new computer system then be sure that you are soon seen as one of the experts in the new system. If you notice that your bosses, managers, and other superiors all have taken certain classes and you haven’t then – sign up for those classes!
What do YOU Think?
What are some other ways that one can increase their lifetime earning potential? About the Author: Joel Ohman is a CFP® and serial entrepreneur. In addition to the car insurance website mentioned earlier he also has been spending time lately working on a website with information on finding the best business credit cards. He is a first time writer at Brip Blap and recommends that you check out the recent post by Steve titled “How to Develop Good Habits”.