FIM: Financial Tips # 5October 29, 2020
The Art of Selling
Selling is an art. No matter how attractive the business proposition, posters, flyers and business cards are, if the business owner and staff do not master the art of selling, the business will move at a snail’s pace. However, the art of selling is not to sell but rather to connect with customers and to build strong relationships that will lead to an increased number of people who not only want to do business with that company but who will also convince others to do so.
Learning from Business Failure
· If your business fails, see this as an opportunity to learn from your mistakes and move forward. In the words of Henry Ford, ‘Failure is the opportunity to begin again more intelligently’.
· Save Regularly – Savings should not be ad hoc or something you do when you have money left over. Rather, savings should be the first expense deducted from your paycheck. You should be diligent about setting aside money from each paycheck towards your future. Practice depositing in a separate account at least 10% of your gross income and make sure you leave it alone.
· The only practical way to get a hold of your spending and to make sure you are using your money wisely is to budget.
· Create a Spending Plan- Yes, you must spend. But, it should be guided by a plan. Impulse spending is a sure path to a financial disaster. It is for this reason that budgeting is important if you are to ensure that you are spending wisely. Create a spending plan (budget) that will guide you as to how you are going to spend your weekly or monthly income and then stick to it.
· Develop a financial plan. Most successful businesses have a three-year or a five-year plan to guide them into the future. Do you have a financial plan for your life that will help you to navigate through the everyday ups and downs and guide you to your future financial goals?
· Adjust expenses to reflect new financial goals. Consider that by foregoing three years of eating out for lunch and opting to walk with your lunch instead you could save enough for that down-payment to you own home.
· Create an emergency fund. The one thing in life that is certain is life will throw us some unexpected and costly curve balls – illness, car accidents, lay off from job. That is why having an emergency fund is critical to our financial success. We all should have at least three to six months salary in an account that is easily accessible in the event of an emergency. Amassing adequate savings in our emergency fund should be a top priority. Achieving this may mean foregoing the weekly outings to movies or the regular trips to your favourite restaurant – for a while.
· Cut back on expensive consumption habits. You can live without that new dress every month or those weekly trips to the bar. The objective is to trim your optional living expenses so that you can have more money to save and invest.
· Take action. It is often said that good things come to those who wait, but the problem is that no one ever knows how long the waiting period is. It could be weeks, months or years…and you may not have the luxury of time to wait when you need funds urgently to pay for unexpected medical expenses during retirement. Rather than waiting around for things to happen in your favour, get financially secure by making things happen. You can be financially secure and avoid going into financial ruin, by planning mindfully. Set aside funds each month for your retirement by starting a retirement fund. Also, set aside funds to cover unexpected costs related to house repairs, health emergencies not covered by your insurance plan and other necessities you would have to pay out of pocket. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
· Commit to a secure financial future. Many of us start on the right path to financial security only to be waylaid by unhealthy spending habits that make us verve off course. Renew your commitment to what matters most to you financially. Remember, success is not made by how many financial goals you make but how many you achieve.
· Create a new financial vision for yourself. If you keep looking back at all of the things that went wrong financially, you will lose faith. Learn to let go of your past financial mistakes by looking for the lesson in those mistakes from which you can benefit and create a clear mental picture of where you are headed now financially.
· Live within your means. If you constantly find yourself needing credit to get you to the next payday, you are living beyond your means. Re-evaluate your budget and talk to your banker or someone else who can help you get your finances straight.
· Limit you urge to swipe that credit card. Unless you pay your credit card bill in full each month, don’t use it for anything you can eat or wear.
· Don’t be tempted by the sale.
· Even if you have life insurance from your job, consider buying a term life insurance policy to hedge against the risk of finding yourself without insurance in case you should ever lose your job and by extension lose your job-obtained insurance.
· When it comes to dealing with your banker, be informed not intimidated. Ask questions.
IN PICTURES: Financial Information Month workshop at Concord Primary SchoolOctober 23, 2020