If you remember our previous article on Multiple Income Streams, you’ll remember that we talked about the difference between working for yourself, and working for someone else. On one hand, you’re exchanging time for money – as an employee or as a self-employed person. This is naturally limited – there’s only so much free time you have, and you need to sleep, eat, and so on.
On the other hand, you could be an investor and use your money, to make more money. This is a great strategy, and you don’t need to be rich to do this, but we’ll cover this in a future article. The next few articles will focus on the last Quadrant – running a successful business.
What’s the difference between running a business and being self-employed? One word – leverage.
I live in Canada, and the Apple iPad is not yet available here officially from Apple. However, they’re readily available on eBay, CraigsList, and Kijiji (the Canadian site is still active). I recently purchased a 16GB model from a fellow off of Kijiji, paying about $30 above the retail price as a premium, still new in the box.
I’m sure those who are interested, have already read reviews, so I won’t hash over all the apps, or the pros and cons in general. I’ll focus on my personal impressions, and what it means to me as a consultant.
Ironically (for those that know me) – I originally didn’t want an iPad – I actually bought it for my wife, really! read more…
I started using GMail about a year ago. Prior to that, I’ve been using Hotmail as my main personal email account, and I’ve migrated off of most of my other email accounts.
I also started using an iPhone about six months ago, and its been a very handy way to keep on top of my email (both GMail and Hotmail) while mobile.
As I’ve started to use GMail more and more, I’ve been very happy with its capabilities, especially with the ability to manage multiple accounts through one mailbox. Both the iPhone, and Apple’s Mail app (tried a couple of others, but this is still the best – especially with WideMail) works well with GMail, and make managing my Inbox a breeze. Threaded conversations are cool, and “It Just Works”.
My Hotmail is now slowly becoming my junkmail folder, and that’s about it. Today, I’m taking the big step, and migrating my Hotmail folders over to GMail.
In his book, the Cashflow Quadrant: Rich Dad’s Guide to Financial Freedom, author and entrepreneur Robert Kiyosaki talks about 4 types of people:
- Self Employed
- Business Owners
Most of us, if we follow the default path in life, of getting a “good education”, then getting a good job, fall into the top left corner, of being nice little employees. We go to school for a good 20 years, then work for 40 years, hoping to have enough money to live for another ten to fifteen years.
Some of us, as consultants, fall into the “S” category – self employed individuals. We too often follow a similar path, with the difference being that at some point we strike out on our own to stray off the path a little bit – hopefully so we can make more money and have more free time.
That’s not often enough though. That’s where the other two types of people come in; you see, those of the left side, typically make up 90-95% of the people, but often control only about 10% of the wealth of society. Those on the right, on the other hand, make up a much smaller portion – 5 to 10% of the population, but they control – you guessed it! – 90% of the wealth. Why is that? read more…
Great little article on TechRepublic on “10 things consultants can do to stay organized“. I’ve followed many of these practices for years, but I have to admit, I sometimes fall short (especially on the notetaking – I hate paper! :) ).
As a consultant, one of the battles I fight on a day-to-day basis is remaining organized. When chaos becomes the rule of the day, the work becomes challenging, inefficient, and frustrating. But keeping chaos at bay is not always an easy task. Murphy’s Law will take your feet out from under you at every corner. So how can consultants keep themselves organized? There are many ways — and you might be surprised that it’s not all about checklists and to-do lists. It’s about working intelligently and efficiently. Let’s take a look at some methods that will help you get through the day without chaos making you its lapdog.
As a consultant, you should always be on the lookout for your next gig. Typically, you do not do mass-market advertising – no radio, TV, or print ads. You need to strike a balance between being busy enough to support your lifestyle and financial/professional goals, and having the time available to pursue your personal goals and to enjoy the fruits of your success.
So how do you keep busy? Networking. read more…
I think its important to ensure that you’re always energized – supercharged – to be your best. There’s lots of books, videos, articles, on how to do this. One thing I found that works for me, is to watch some great motivational videos or to listen to a great speaker. The difference between a good speaker, and a great speaker, is the ability to energize you. You could be the best expert in the world on a particular topic, but unless you can be passionate about it, and transfer that passion to your audience – make me care! – then you’re just a good speaker, not great.
I’ve been listening to a great book (yes, I said great!) from Audible.com lately,
The Unemployed Millionaire: Escape the Rat Race, Fire Your Boss, and Live Life on YOUR Terms! by Matt Morris. Matt has a great story (check out his website for the full treatment), and its great to hear first hand about his successes. After Matt launched his book, just a few weeks ago now, he’s started up a blog as well, and has set up a great tradition, Motivational Mondays. He posts up a short video clip about a topic or idea that’s really motivated him, and shares how its helped him with his audience. I’ve been following along with Matt, and he just posted a great clip that I found really motivating myself, a collection of clips from Will Smith – singer / rapper, actor, husband, father, and – who knew it! – but a great speaker. Check it out below. read more…
You’re in business for many reasons, but I’m sure one of those reasons is to make money!
A critical part of managing any business is cashflow management, and its no different in the consulting business. While you may not have the same fiscal pressures as product/inventory based businesses, with creditors constantly knocking on your door to be paid for goods ordered, you have to be especially careful that you’re not losing sight of billables either.
Here’s some information on how you can manage your consulting cashflow effectively.
Its no secret that I’m an admirer of Adam Khoo. Not only is he a successful businessman and personally wealthy, but he’s dedicated his life to sharing his success secrets and helping others be their personal best.
I’ve personally purchased many of Adam’s products, and I’ve even promoted them to you, my readers. This time however, Adam has outdone himself!
I recognize that not all of you are parents – but you may have children in your life regardless. Whether its a favourite niece or nephew, a grand-child, or even a god-child – the children in our lives are important, and as parents or caregivers, we want what’s best for them.
While there are lots of books on properly raising your children, most of them are written by child-care professionals. I’m not sure how many of them are actually successful parents themselves, and how many have written from success they’ve achieved in their own lives. Would you take financial advice from a high-school economics teacher? Not if he was broke, that’s for sure!