Tuesday

5 Reasons Why Most Don’t Become Wealthy

“Why is it that people don’t become wealthy?”  In a country like ours, with the opportunities that we have, why is it that so few people retire financially independent?  And I eventually found the answers. Here are what I consider to be the five reasons why people don’t become wealthy.

Who Me?

First, at the top of the list, is that it never occurs to them.  The average person has grown up in a family where he has never met or known anyone who was wealthy.  He goes to school and socializes with people who are not wealthy.  He works with people who are not wealthy.  He has a reference group or a social circle outside of work who are not wealthy. He has no role models who are wealthy. If this has happened to you throughout your formative years, up to the age of twenty, you can grow up and become a fully mature adult in our society, and it may never occur to you that it’s just as possible for you to become wealthy as for anyone else.
This is why people who grow up in homes where their parents are wealthy are much more likely to become wealthy as adults then people who grew up in homes where their parents are not.  So the first reason why people don’t become wealthy is it never occurs to them that it is possible for them.  And of course, if it never occurs to them, then they never take any of the steps necessary to make it a reality.

Make a Decision!

The second reason that people don’t become wealthy is that they never decide to.  Even if a person reads a book, attends a lecture, or associates with people who are financially successful, nothing changes until he makes a decision to do something different. Even if it occurs to a person that he could become wealthy if he just did certain things in a specific way, if he doesn’t decide to take the first step, he ends up staying as he is. If you continue to do what you’ve always done, you’ll continue to get what you’ve always got.
The primary reason for underachievement and failure is that the great majority of people don’t decide to be successful. They never make a firm, unequivocal commitment or definite decision that they are going to become wealthy. They mean to, and they intend to, and they hope to and they’re going to, someday. They  wish and hope and pray that they will make a lot of money, but they never decide, “I am going to do it!” This decision is an essential first step to becoming financially independent.

Maybe Tomorrow

The third reason that people don’t become wealthy is procrastination.  People always have a good reason not to begin doing what they know they need to do to achieve financial independence.  It is always the wrong month, the wrong season, or the wrong year.  Business conditions in their industry are no good, or they may be too good. The market isn’t right. They may have to take a risk, or give up their security. Maybe next year.
There always seems to be a reason to procrastinate. As a result, they keep putting it off, month by month, year by year, until it’s too late.  Even if it has occurred to a person that they can become wealthy, and they have made a decision to change, procrastination will push all their plans into the indefinite future.

Pay the Price

The fourth reason that people retire poor is what economists call the inability to delay gratification.  The great majority of people have an irresistible temptation to spend every single penny they make and whatever else they can borrow or buy on credit.  If you cannot delay gratification, and discipline yourself to refrain from spending everything you make, you cannot become wealthy. If you cannot practice budgeting as a lifelong habit, it will be impossible for you to achieve financial independence. As W.Clement Stone said, “If you cannot save money, the seeds of greatness are not in you.”

Take the Long View

The fifth reason that people retire poor is perhaps as important, if not more important, than all the others. It is lack of time perspective.  In a longitudinal study conducted by Dr Edward Banfield at Harvard University in the 1950s and published in 1964 as The Unheavenly City, he studied the reasons for upward socio-economic mobility.  He wanted to know how you could predict whether an individual or a family was going to move upward one or more socio-economic groupings and be wealthier in the next generation than they were this generation.
All his research brought him to a single factor that he concluded was more accurate than any other in predicting success in America. They called it time perspective.  This was defined as the amount of time that you take into consideration when planning your day-to-day activities and when making important decisions in your life.  Time perspective referred to how far you projected into the future when you decided what you were going to do or not do in the present.
An example of long time perspective is the common habit of upper class families in England to register their children at Oxford or Cambridge as soon as the child is born, even though he or she will not be attending for eighteen or nineteen years. This is long time perspective in action.  The young couple that begins putting $50 dollars a month aside in a scholarship fund so that their newborn child can go to the college or university of his or her choice is a couple with long time perspective. They are willing to sacrifice in the short term to assure better results and outcomes in the long term. People with long time perspective almost invariably move up economically in the course of their lifetimes.
PS: Welcome to also connect with me on Twitter at https://twitter.com/WillemTait or on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/willemtait

Wednesday

Woolwich memorial page

One of the men behind a barbaric terror attack on the streets of London today was filmed wielding a bloodied meat cleaver and saying, “We swear by almighty Allah we will never stop fighting you.” Here is a couple of photos. Our thoughts are with the family of the victim. 

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Tuesday

Guptagate what’s that smell? Must be the name droppings



Minister Jeff Radebe on Sunday blamed “name-dropping” for the Gupta corruption scandal and said the government wanted name-dropping to be classified as a form of gross misconduct – presumably for members of the civil service. But for Radebe to blame officials for a culture of name-dropping and to rail against such a culture, is a bit like a habitual drunk blaming a culture of wine making and railing against liquor stores to excuse the fact that he killed a child while driving under the influence of liquor.
Several years ago I was involved in an argument with the principal of a high school in Polokwane. The principal had endorsed unfair discrimination against gay and lesbian learners during a school assembly (comparing homosexuality to Satanism) and I was trying to get the principal to repent and to respect the existing law. The principal was evidently an old style beneficiary of Broederbond-style affirmative action gone wrong and was clearly not the sharpest tool in the shed. He refused to acknowledge the existence of the sections of various Acts prohibiting his school from unfairly discriminating against gay and lesbian learners, choosing to repeat his own narrow-minded, racist and homophobic views as justification for his actions.
As it dawned on me that the principal lacked the basic intelligence and academic literacy required to engage in a logical and coherent debate, I am ashamed to admit I finally reverted to name-dropping. Pretending to be good friends with the then-Minister of Education, I threatened to report him to my good friend, the minister, if he did not relent.
But even this intellectually challenged man did not fall for my bluff. He knew as well as I did that I had no influence with the Minister of Education. I could drop her name a million times until her name shattered into a million bright little pieces at my feet – he would be safe in ignoring my increasingly shrill demands and threats. He knew I had no influence or power over the minister and hence that the name-dropping was nothing but an empty gesture to try to get him to do what his reactionary politics prevented him from doing.
Now, of course, the situation would have been different if I was widely known to be a friend and financial benefactor of the minister. The principal would probably have quaked in his boots if it was widely known that I were the minister’s financial benefactor and that I had been bankrolling the minister and her family. He would have jumped and done as I asked if he had thought that the minister would do anything I told her to do because I had bribed the minister. In those circumstances, not even a person as stupid as that principal would have dared to ignore my complaints. He would have been far too scared of losing his job or being transferred to Putsonderwater High School.
But because the principal correctly suspected that I would never pay bribes to a politician, because we both (probably correctly) assumed that the Minister of Education would never have taken bribes from me or anyone else, and because it was therefore highly unlikely that I had the Minister of Education in my pocket to do as I ordered her to do, that principal had no problem in ignoring my pathetic attempt at name-dropping.
The admission by Minister Radebe that “names were dropped”, is therefore telling. Using the passive voice – a classic technique of evasion – Minister Radebe on Sunday said that the Minister of Defence, the Minister of Transport and President Jacob Zuma’s names were dropped (by whom we are not told) to officials to get them to break the law.
Even if we believe Minister Radebe when he claims that no minister, nor the president, gave direct instructions to any of the officials who orchestrated this abuse of state power, the very appeal to “name-dropping” as a justification for exculpating the politicians, suggest that corruption is at the heart of this scandal. For some reason – which might or might not be linked to activities that are prohibited by the Prevention and Combatting of Corrupt Activities Act – all the officials miraculously believed that when the Gupta’s drop the president’s name, they better jump – after asking the Gupta’s how high they were required to jump.
The most telling and shameful aspect of Guptagate is that – even on the version of events dished up to us by the likes of Minister Radebe – the officials all believed that they had to follow the Gupta’s request or face the consequences from the president and the ministers whose names were dropped. On Radebe’s own version, then, senior officials believed that the president and his ministers were corrupt and willing to break the law and endanger South Africa’s security. On this version officials wilfully broke the law and endangered South Africa’s national security because they thought their jobs depended on fulfilling the corrupt and unlawful wishes of the President and his Ministers.
This is an extraordinary admission to make and I am not sure the minister and his colleagues have given sufficient thought to what they are admitting to. They are, in effect, telling us that the culture of corruption and bribery around the president and the government he leads is so deeply entrenched that – without even having to take instructions from the president or one of his ministers and regardless of what the actual situation might be – senior officials would break the law and endanger national security to please the Guptas, because they believed the Guptas had bribed President Zuma and could instruct him what to do.
What is equally astonishing is that Minister Radebe and his colleagues have failed to ask the obvious question that flows from this unintended admission of government entanglement with corruption: why would the officials believe that the name-dropping by the Guptas (or their underlings) of President Zuma’s name was anything but the empty threats made by any other citizen? After all, those officials would have been unimpressed if any of us ordinary citizens, who (unlike the Guptas) had not been paying off the bond on the house of one of the president’s wives and had not co-opted the president’s son as a business partner, had dropped President Zuma’s name in order to get those officials to break the law. I could drop President Zuma’s name a million times, and I would still not get a single official to allow me to land a civilian plane at Waterkloof Air Force base.
When Radebe claims that the scandal shows that name-dropping in the public service had to be classified as a form of gross misconduct, he is either demonstrating a tenuous grip on logic, or he is wilfully trying to mislead the public. Officials do not drop names. People like the Guptas drop names. They drop names because they have paid their dues and know that the officials will feel pressured by the name-dropping. They drop names because they have names in their pockets to drop. People who drop names have those names in their pockets because they are willing to pay for the privilege.
It is not the officials who are at fault. It is the business people who buy the influence of powerful politicians with offers of financial and other assistance (and the powerful politicians who allow this to happen), who are at fault. And there is no need for new legislation to deal with this problem. This kind of buying of influence that makes name-dropping effective is all outlawed by the Prevention and Combatting of Corrupt Activities Act. This is, not so incidentally, the very Act under which President Jacob Zuma was going to be prosecuted before charges against him were mysteriously dropped. (I guess President Zuma must have dropped his own name to get the National Prosecuting Authority conveniently to make those charges go away.)
So, dear reader, when you hear a politician bemoaning the culture of name-dropping, ask that politician whether he or she could take a lie detector test to promise that he or she had never received any financial or other benefit from any one of those rich businessmen and -women who so love to drop the names of our politicians. Then watch as that politician squirms to avoid answering your question.
Written by Pierre de Vos

Monday

Six Reasons Why You Must Use LinkedIn with Twitter, Facebook etc

LinkedIn is by far most the important social network to reach out to business buyers and connect with professionals in general. The network allows you to build relationships, establish thought leadership, generate leads, gain insights, conduct market research, improve reputation and build online communities.

When you are finished reading this article, click here and connect with me on LinkedIn. You will need to fill in my email address in LinkedIn being willem@willemtait.com

If you are already connected with me, would like to suggest that you join one of the following LinkedIn business groups:

Click here for ResInvest - Community of property professionals and investors

Click here for the Rugby Business Network of South Africa

Click here for the Just Investment Network - community of investors and product suppliers


1. Create awareness and improve reputation.

LinkedIn is an ideal platform to increase your online presence. With more than two professionals signing up on LinkedIn every second, businesses have the opportunity to network with an increasing number of interesting contacts. Using the different personal and group features in LinkedIn, companies and the people representing them can all improve their visibility and credibility, both as individuals and (thus) as a brand.

Don’t forget the use status update functionality, an underutilized feature, although with the new design, the updates are more prominent visible on the homepage.

2. Thought leadership and influencer marketing.

Several LinkedIn features allow you to position yourself as leaders in a particular domain. From providing high-quality content, improving your personal profile and participating in LinkedIn communities to answering questions: the network is fertile ground for thought and practice leaders, aiming to become trusted advisors. Leadership and reputation go hand in hand with influence. As the main purpose of LinkedIn is networking, it also enables you to identify and engage other influencers.

3. Selling and generating leads.

LinkedIn is probably the best network to generate leads. On top of traditional techniques such as mentioning interesting content potential customers can download or driving traffic to relevant sources, LinkedIn offers very personal ways of identifying potential leads, engaging them and turning them into customers. This is done by a good combination of listening, analyzing, participating, sharing, networking and responding. Networking with potential clients and marketing to them indirectly through LinkedIn will increase the opportunity to make sales.

Customers and prospect are more likely to post questions and needs, 18% is Group-related posts which gives the B2B marketers an opportunity to identify new leads. Another 18% are content sharing and liking content, which gives you insights on what they find interesting.

By giving answers to questions on LinkedIn, you can demonstrate know-how. If your solution/answer, in the form of a response to a question, is what potential customers are looking for, they will initiate a contact.

4. Social CRM.

LinkedIn is ideal in a social CRM context: it allows us to gain a better view on – prospective – customers and other contacts. This can be done using simple Social CRM applications but also by using ‘connecters’, for instance, for Outlook. Although most Social CRM solutions offer integration with LinkedIn, you can also set up a basic integration of your contacts as LinkedIn supports Google Contacts. A benefit of a social CRM tool is that it allows you to see what your contacts are doing on LinkedIn in real-time, offering valuable additional information on their behavior and preferences. When targeting a contact, LinkedIn itself allows you to see this information in its own environment.

5. Traffic building.

One of the strengths of LinkedIn that is not often mentioned is its power in link building and traffic driving. Just as other social networks do, LinkedIn has a social sharing button that enables you to share content in your status updates (which are visible on the homepage) and in LinkedIn Groups (communities) you are a member of. This works especially well for business-related content and can lead to viral effects. Business content often gets shared more often via LinkedIn than via Facebook.

6. Listening and gaining insights.

Last but certainly not least: LinkedIn is perfect to listen, ask questions and gain insights. Which is the case for all social media marketing!


If you are on twitter, welcome to also follow me @WillemTait