Investing in YOU Comes Before Investing Your Wealth

 

When the word “investing” comes to mind, you probably think of investing in your retirement account, or possibly your financial plan. While those are great things to think about, don’t overlook your most important investments: yourself and your career.

Most of us will build our nest eggs by working over many years so that we can fuel the life we want to live in both the near term and the long term. The success of our careers has a very direct impact on how we build for our futures. As we climb the corporate ladders, our money follows suit! It only makes sense to be intentional about what happens with the biggest part of our waking lives.

A financial advisor can provide more detailed and customized strategies to help you with this, but in the meantime, here are some tips for getting intentional about your career:

Set SMART Goals

Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Timely. Plot out your intentional career path. What do you expect it to look like? Much like your financial investments, it is easy to get off track without detailed goals. Define what is important to you and review your goals as needed. Make sure you also regularly check in with your boss about your goals and your expectations regarding your career path. Seek out the support to ensure you can exceed your own expectations.

Take Risks

If you want to grow within your career, you have to take risks. When you have a great idea, don’t hesitate to voice your opinion. If you have a question, ask it. If you need help, request it! Don’t be afraid to take chances because that is where major growth can come from. Also, remember that you are never stuck in a place that is not allowing you to grow and expand your abilities and results. Charting your career path can mean making intentional decisions about where your next bold move may take you.

Diversify Your Knowledge

Take every opportunity to learn and diversify your skill sets! Partner with people that complement your strengths while helping you expand on your weaknesses. A mentor can be incredibly beneficial to helping you learn the ins and outs of a business. Then when you feel confident, try serving as a mentor to others as well.

Know Your Rate of Return

In any career it is important to know your worth and how you want to measure your return. Your return may be in form of compensation, benefits, promotions, or happiness. No matter the form of your return, it is important to know you are receiving an appropriate return for the value you provide! There will always be a balance: YOU get to decide if the sacrifices you are making in the short term are worth it for the long term.

Reinvest Your Dividends

Similar to financial planning, try to take your return and reinvest back into yourself or your career. Whether this reinvestment is in monetary form or knowledge-based, reinvesting can be a great way to see growth.  This could take the form of hiring a coach, taking in some extra education, or even starting your own business.

Take stock regularly

So many of us are focused on the day-to-day busyness of work that we seldom contemplate if we are on the right path. Make sure that you ponder your path on a regular basis. Are you doing something you love that will allow you to build the financial life you want? Do you have the desired balance in your life between your career and your personal life? Is the path you’re on taking you where you ultimately want to go? Remember to ask yourself the questions that really matter.

Ultimately, you should invest your time like you invest your money. If you are interested in finding out how to best invest in yourself, and how to best manage the returns from that investment, contact us at pwa@keatinginc.com.

Any opinions are those of the author and not necessarily those of Raymond James. The foregoing information has been obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but we do not guarantee that it is accurate or complete.