Four Points to Consider
By Joel Boggess
Unfortunately, you don’t have to look very far to find someone who has been negatively affected by the downturn in the labor market.
While it may not seem all that long ago when this country was pumping out paychecks at full employment, the latest numbers put the jobless rate at 8.6% and the Labor Department says that in January alone, nearly 600,000 jobs were siphoned out of the economy.
In times of low unemployment numbers, companies can expect somewhere around 70 to 80 respondents per job opening. With unemployment numbers creeping upward, it stands to reason that the response ratio will also ratchet higher.
With an increasingly competitive job market, it is now more important than ever to have a good understanding of what you have to offer the employer (skills and abilities, personality tendencies, values, dreams, and passions).
When I’m helping someone find their next best fit, I encourage him or her to hold fast to four simple points before they put wheels on their job search strategy.
(Below each point are three questions to help you gain clarity.)
1. Look inward: Are there professional themes that continue to play out in my life? Am I confusing my abilities to do a job with my professional desires? In what style of professional environment do I feel the most energized?
2. Look backward: Looking at my work life so far, what has given me the greatest value or worth? What are some of the more valuable lessons I’ve learned from my past professional achievements? What did I dream about doing as a younger person?
3. Look forward: What would really give me professional mobility? What group of words or rallying cry would describe my ideal career? Is there a difference between job, career, and vocation? Should I create my own opportunity (in this economy)?
4. Look upward: Did God put a calling on my life? If I am called to do something, why am I fearful?
By answering these questions, you can go forward in your job search confident of your abilities and your strengths.
Financial: Three Retirement Tips for Late Starters
By Dave Ramsey
Now is the time to get moving! Are you one of the millions of people who realized you started saving for retirement about 20 years too late? If so, don’t lose your head and start freaking out. Here are three tips to help you.
1. Downsize your lifestyle. It’s a safe bet that you’ll need about 85% of what you earned before retirement after you leave your job. If you buy that $5 latte every morning or always wear the expensive, name-brand clothing, I’m talking to you. It’s time to get “gazelle intense” about paying off all your debts and living on less than you make. 2. Put off retirement for two more years. The more you work, the more you save. According to the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, most people that work just two more years past retirement age can lower the amount of savings needed by about 25%. Plus, the extra income won’t hurt anything!
3. Start investing in mutual funds. If you’re 40 and have zero dollars in your retirement account, don’t give up yet! By saving just $2,000 a year in a mutual fund earning 12%, you will have $333,866 by age 65—or $428,714 if you wait till age 67! While you won’t have the most luxurious retirement, you can draw a decent yearly income from the interest by leaving that money alone. That’s roughly $48,000 a year!
If you’re a late starter, you need to get moving right now because time is your biggest enemy! Now is the time to get in touch with the investing professional in your town who Dave recommends to get you started investing or to maximize what you already have. These professionals have been interviewed many times to make sure they give the absolute best advice. Connect with Dave’s Endorsed Local Provider in your area.
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