Tag Archives: insiders group

Rethinking Retirement

21 Mar

Retirement to most people today means the end of working a job and living off of portfolio income (401k), a pension and social security. This concept, which is fairly new, is already obsolete. To understand this let’s examine its origins and progression.

Traditionally, in early America (from its founding until the mid 1880’s), when a family member was too old or physically unable to work, the other members of the extended family took care of him. However, four important demographic changes happened in America beginning in the mid-1880s that rendered the traditional systems of economic security obsolete: The Industrial Revolution, rapid urbanization, the disappearance of the extended family and a marked increase in life expectancy.

The Industrial Revolution transformed the majority of working people from self-employed agricultural workers into wage earners working for large industrial corporations. This meant mass migrations to urban centers where the work was to be found. In the crowded urban environments, family sizes were forced to get smaller. The cost of housing, clothing and feeding an extended family (grandparents, parents and children) was undoable in the new economy. This fostered the creation of the “nuclear family” (parents and children only) which most of us are accustomed to seeing today.

The final significant change happened in the early decades of the 20th century. Better health care, sanitation, and the development of public health programs, led Americans to live significantly longer. Between 1900 and 1930, average life spans increased by 10 years. This was the most rapid increase in life spans in recorded human history.

The net result of these historical demographic and social changes was that the traditional strategies for the providing for those no longer able to work quickly dissolved.

The decade of the 1930s found America facing the worst economic crisis in its modern history. Millions of people were unemployed, and the majority of the elderly lived in dependency. The traditional sources of economic security: assets, labor, family, and charity had all failed. Radical calls for action were being made by the public. President Franklin Roosevelt responded by signing into law The Social Security Act on August 14, 1935 to pay retired workers age 65 or older a continuing income after retirement.

Fast forward to today… Four major demographic changes have made that system obsolete as we emerge from the second worst economic crisis in US history. Change from the Industrial Age to the new Innovation Age, globalization, further dissolving of the nuclear family, and another marked increase in life expectancy.

The loss of manufacturing jobs, the increase of exportation of jobs, and importation of goods from the global economy has changed the face of the job market forever. Companies no longer promise work until retirement and a pension plan for your twilight years. Nuclear families have gotten even smaller and young people are more detached from their parents as this society celebrates individuality and independence over cooperative living. Finally, as medical technology improves, people are now outliving the age for which social security, their pensions and portfolios were designed to last.

The solution… the whole concept of retirement should be reevaluated. You only retire from a job (earned income) – especially a job you don’t enjoy. There is no retirement from passive income sources. With passive income sources that pay dividends (real estate, securities and business ownership), you work hard to acquire the asset and then it continues to pay you continuously until the market changes and it can no longer provide positive cash flow. You don’t retire; you simply shift your resources into a new cash producing asset.

Advertisements

The Popcorn Effect

18 Mar

I often get asked by people that are new in business how to remain profitable in a down economy. To answer that question, let’s take a lesson from the Great Depression. Prior to the Great Depression movie theatres were luxurious buildings with grand, elegantly designed lobbies that rivaled the fanciest opera houses. What people do not know today is that the richly designed lobbies did not include concession stands.

What changed? The decade of the 1930s drove most Americans into dire financial straits.  People could no longer afford the relatively high price of a theatre ticket and movie houses were closing in droves. Some innovative theatre owners discovered that if they lowered the price of admission and sold an inexpensive snack, more people would come.

What was the solution? Popcorn! Popcorn is very inexpensive to make. The popcorn that you pay $5.00 for costs the theatre only 50 cents to make. The popcorn is served in an overstuffed bag or gigantic bucket to make the perceived value greater than it actually is. They also discovered that the more salt that you add to the popcorn, the larger the drink people will buy. To this day, far more money is made at the concession stand than on admission tickets (billions of dollars).

To thrive in business in today’s economy, you have to find your popcorn. You don’t have to try to create a totally new industry. You have to find a way to extract maximum profits from a market that people already have an affinity for. You have to find ways to overcome the financial barriers that would prevent people from buying, draw them in with perceived value, and make them feel comfortable with upsells, cross sells and side sells. They have to feel happy spending more money on your popcorn than the cost of admission. 

What Does A New Historic District Approval Mean for Crown Heights, Brooklyn?

21 Jul

St. Marks Avenue in Crown Heights - one of the more historic blocks in the area

The intrinsic value of a neighborhood cannot be duplicated. From it’s limestone and brownstone buildings, to its long-time inhabitants full of culture and yes, at times vitriol, Crown Heights is one of the most unique neighborhoods in the United States.   Will this new historical district approval mean rising rents or simply more pride?  Will it improve neighborhood relations in a place ripe for religious and racial differences?  I suppose we’ll see for sure in the next few years.

Read the full article below from WNYC.org  writer Marlon Bishop.

July 22, 2011

On Tuesday, the city’s Landmark Preservation Commission approved the creation of a new historic district in Brooklyn’s predominantly West Indian-American and Hasidic Jewish neighborhood of Crown Heights: the Crown Heights North II Historic District.

The new district includes 610 row houses, apartment buildings and large Queen Anne-style homes, most of which were built between 1870 and 1920. The area is bound by Bergen St. to the north, Brooklyn Ave. to the east, Eastern Parkway to the south and Nostrand Ave. to the west; and it borders a pre-existing, 472-building historic area that the Landmark Preservation Commission designated as a historic district in 2007.

“The neighborhood is really an exquisite mosaic of remarkably well preserved examples of architectural styles and building types,” said the commission’s chairman Robert Tierney.

Area resident Deborah Young created the Crown Heights North Association to help generate interest in landmarking in the community and to educate her neighbors on the benefits of a historic district, which she says include increased property values and protection from the kind of over-development happening elsewhere in Brooklyn.

“Look at what’s going on in Downtown Brooklyn with the building of these huge structures,” said Young. “Not that they’re not nice in their own right, but they’re keeping with the brownstones that you have in many of our neighborhoods. So, for us in Crown Heights, we want to maintain what we have.”

According to the Crown Heights North Association, Crown Heights was one of the wealthiest neighborhoods in Brooklyn in the late 19th century. Eastern Parkway was lined with opulent mansions that were eventually torn down and replaced with townhouses. African American and Caribbean families began to buy homes in the area in the 1920s, even as the neighborhood became home to the Orthodox Jewish Chabad-Lubavitch movement and several Yeshiva schools.

Opponents of landmarking argue that protected status makes renovation and development unnecessarily difficult for landlords. Others claim that the resulting increase in property values leads to higher rents, which accelerates gentrification.

Before the Crown Heights North II Historic District becomes official, it must be approved by the City Council. A third historic district in the area is also being considered by the commission.

You Can’t Be Lazy and Still Want to Change Your Life for the Better

1 Jun

If you’ve read this blog before, or watched my videos or even more so have come to my classes, you know that what I’m about to tell you about really pisses me off.  In a survey taken a few months ago,it was found that most people that are unhappy at their jobs to very little to change their situation.  This is a behavior that leaves me dumbfounded.

For my new readers, I became fed up with my lack of financial success – and increasing debt – more than a decade ago.  After stumbling through bad business ideas and deals, I plunked down and finally discovered the keys to my now continued success.  But even before I found those keys, I declared to my job that in two years (this is in 20o2) that I would be leaving –retiring – and that they should find my replacement.  In that two years I cleared up my $45,000 worth of debt and soon after became a millionaire.  I realized that not everyone has my fortitude, and so I founded Insiders Group Inc. to teach others how to do what I did and am glad to have made others very successful in their own right.  But enough about me, this is about laziness.

If all you do is wallow in your depression, your situation will never change.  Everyone isn’t an entrepreneur, true, but anyone – given they seek the knowledge out to do so – can make something better of themselves for themselves, their families and their communities.

Unhappy Workers Do Little About It, Says Survey

by Kyle Stock

from FINS Technology – The Wall St. Journal

Griping about your job is one thing; doing something about it is something else entirely.

When it comes to hunting for a better position elsewhere, most of us don’t bother, according to a survey released this morning by Accenture. Almost half of the 3,400 workers questioned by the technology consulting firm said they were dissatisfied with their jobs, but only 30% of respondents had any plans to switch employers.

The more common strategy was to build up experience and look for a better opportunity in-house.

“There’s still a sense of commitment to take action with their current employer,” said LaMae Allen deJongh, the author of the study and Accenture’s managing director for human capital and diversity. “We interpret that as an opportunity.”

And while feeling underpaid was the biggest complaint, only about half of those surveyed had ever asked for or negotiated a pay raise.

If companies aren’t in a position to hand out raises, deJongh said they should offer promotions, greater responsibility and flexibly work arrangements to keep employees happy.

There is some evidence that job dissatisfaction is running particularly high. A recent report by the Conference Board, a nonprofit, New York-based research firm, found that 55% of Americans are dissatisfied with their jobs, the highest level in 22 years. Respondents also said the best part of their work as the company of colleagues and the commute.

No doubt, much of the recent discontent is tied to the economy at large. Those still in the workforce are likely doing more and earning less — or at least not much more — than they were a few years ago. And many are likely slogging away in positions they have little interest in.

Then again, there are almost 14 million people still looking for work — something to consider next time you feel like griping about your paycheck.

Insider Secrets – Q&A 3/11/2011

12 Mar

In my latest Q&A, I share why keeping your money in the bank is a losing proposition to you regardless of the interest accrued & why investing in gold coins isn’t really as valuable as advertised.

Feel free to comment and to submit questions of your own to: Heru@insidersgroup.com
or to his Twitter account at – Twitter.com/HeruNekhet

Heru Nekhet
Foudner & President, Insiders Group Inc.

www.InsidersGroup.com

Insider Secrets – Q&A 2/17/2011

19 Feb

In the latest of my Q&A sessions, I answer questions about the potential end of the effects of this Great Recession, whether it makes sense or not to preserve your credit, and whether now is a terrible time to start a business (and what’s the proper way to do so).

To submit your own questions and get valuable financial advice, email them to: Heru@Insidersgroup.com or to my Twitter page – twitter.com/HeruNekhet

Heru Nekhet
President, Insiders Group Inc
www.InsidersGroup.com

Insider Secrets – Q&A 1/21/2011

21 Jan

Check out the first of my new ongoing Question & Answer (Q&A) series from questions I get from my email and Twitter followers. The first edition is hosted by legendary radio broadcaster Wayne Gillman (WBLS, WLIB – NY)

Enjoy…and let me know what you think.

Heru Nekhet
President, Insiders Group Inc
www.InsidersGroup.com