To thrive in China you must embrace Guanxi. It is the cultivation of business relationships- not superficial networking. One American business leader, an aerospace president, told me his approach to building Guanxi with his Chinese counterparts included long (5 or 6 hour) dinners often with several other people and lots of alcohol. He is also working to perfect his language skills to speak and understand Mandarin so he can have more personal conversations without an interpreter present. It will take him many months of this consistent behavior to start making inroads. But it is worth the investment of time and energy. After all China, despite the financial woes of the past year, is still an economic powerhouse.
In China you establish Guanxi first and then work on the deal. It doesn’t happen overnight- but by showing mutual respect and interest you can start to build Guanxi with a good first meeting.
Traveling with Drexel University’s LeBow College of Business Executive MBA program I spent two weeks learning about the business culture and climate in China. It was fascinating and there are so many other takeaways to share, but for those who want to do business with the amazing market that China is, it pays to take your time and start building some Guanxi. Whether you are looking to grow your customer base or expand your B2B network, this Chinese norm could be a useful tool for you.
I have two areas. The first one is in my retirement area the second in daily spending & savings plan.
To help you better help me. I was married for 26 years, now divorced. My husband did all the retirement planning etc. So now I have, 1/2 of what he planned. If I don’t speak spanish and he did-frankly I am unsure of what I do have. So after my divorce in 2004, I actually received the 401k etc. in 2007 since then I have Charles Swabb handling some of it, and I have a 401k from a company he used to work for, I have one with a company I know longer work for. So what do I do with it, how can I understand it . Then how do I understand what I do have so I have a baseline to know what I need to achieve for the future.
I am out of work and applying for jobs. I moved from out of state into my parents house, in a very rural community. My mother just passed away and father is in a nursing home. So I have no expenses except for the telephone/internet, car expenses, personal care, food. If I need to leave here to gain employment, I won’t have any savings to help me live and pay rent. The jobs would be at least 60 miles to 120 mile away one way. So starting with nothing how do I get something built up, and where to put it as I
build. I will be receiving real-estate, and money from my parents estate. I would like to know how to handle a good chunk of money in a short period of time, to be put to use towards my best interest. So I feel I need to work on both of these areas.
Thank you for your time and efforts. I am truly grateful.
The number one thing you need to do is figure out what you have and what you have access to. How close are you to being able to receive social security?
Once you have figured out what financial assets you have- figure out your talent assets.
What can you do? How can those skills be put to use to make money. There are so many home based ways to make money today that I suggest you look into that as an option as soon as possible.
You may also qualify for food assistance from both the government and your community food bank.
Finally – see what you can do now for the house and other assets your parents plan to leave you- to make the estate transfer go smoothly. If you do not have internet at your house – get to a library once a week to tackle these questions. I want to see you in charge of your next chapter. That will require some leg work but ultimately it will be rewarding.
I will leave you with this quote that motivates me when I think the challenge ahead is tough.
“We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret or disappointment.” -Jim Rohn
Work hard to get the answers to these questions and appoint yourself the CEO of your life. The best is yet to come.
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What is it you want? When it comes to money the easy answer is win the lottery- get a windfall of cash. But when we really hold ourself accountable and ask what is it I really want financially… The answer is usually something a little simpler and in our power to achieve.
So where do you start… How about the end?
Starting with your destination has its advantages. There are no limits- you decide. Plus it’s easier to craft a roadmap when you
Know where you want to go. So take a minute and come up win your goals. Write them down and tuck them away.
Now that you know where you want to go, rewind. Take stock on where you are now. Knowing where are you now and where do you want to go gives you two points on your map. You know the start and the finish. It is time to connect the dots in between.
This is where the real reward comes in. Developing a plan to get to your destination. I know, I know it is also the hard part.
I have written this before,but it is worth restating, your plan should start with small, achievable steps. Set yourself up to succeed. That is what Sonja did.
Sonja’s credit score was a disaster. She hated paying bills because it reminded her of how little she had. She made things worse because she paid those bills late, skipped others and before you know it- yikes! Her credit score was so bad she feared it would hurt her ability to get a better job.
Sonja took my advice and started small. Simple achievable steps each week. It started with creating a smarter way of organizing her bills. We all know how chaotic leaving the house and then returning home can be.. there is a lot going on in both directions. Grabbing a fistful of bills and junk mail as she opened the door each day was just one more stress for Sonja. The dog was barking, she had dry cleaning or groceries, her work bag and a little one in tow.
It was an obstacle, but one she had never identified. Once she saw it- the solution was simple. Sonja hung an attractive mail organizer near her front door. Automatically she had a safe place to put the mail when she came home.
This gave her the chance to get in the house after along day and not have to feel overwhelmed by a mountain of mail. But they were also in plan sight- not stashed away. She found it easier to get rid of the junk and pair down the stack each day. All of a sudden the smaller stack seemed more manageable.
For Sonja one good habit, followed the other. Bills were dealt with in a more timely manner, so she had fewer and fewer late fees. Slowly her credit was being restored. The surprise benefit that Sonja received was by paying closer attention to what she was spending she found new ways to save. I’m happy to report that both her credit score and her confidence has improved.
You get the point, small steps turn into more small steps and eventually bigger steps. That is how you create real change. That is how you create the road map to what you want.
The best part is – you own what you’ve done. Your success cannot be take away from you and any missteps have only made you smarter.
A special thank you to Ronni Cohen and her DFLI team for today’s Purses to Portfolios event. It was an honor to speak at the program. Congrats to the 900 men and women who invested their time today to build a more financially secure tomorrow
My cheat sheet
Step 1 Decide where do you want to be
Step 2 Determine where you are now
Step 2 The plan- how do you get to where you want to be
Step 3 Set achievable goals each week.
Step 4 Set more aggressive goals
Step 5 Take stock – celebrate the wins in a smart way that is aligned with your goals
For more on chores check out this video
Kids and Money: Structuring Chores
Check out this sneak peak of an upcoming episode of my show “We Owe What?” on ABC’s LiveWell TV. This episode had our entire crew holding back the tears!!]]>
Today I want to share the lesson they loved – Doubling Your Money using the The Rule of 72.
A long time ago a math wiz discovered that if you use the number 72 in certain mathematical equations, you can figure out two things:
• How long it takes to double your money
• What interest rate you need to double your money
Creating the Rule of 72. BTW you don’t have to be a genius to put these equations to work for you. But if you like equations- here they are!
72 ÷ interest rate = the number of years it will take to double money
72 ÷ the number of years you want to double your money = the interest rate you need
You can use these equations with whatever the going interest rate is. And, you can use the answer to figure out how to double any amount of money.
Dividing 72 by the interest rate
72 ÷ 4 (the interest rate) = 18 (years)
At a 4 percent interest rate, your money will double in 18 years.
If the interest rate is 8 percent, how long will it take for your $50 to double?
72 ÷ 8 (the interest rate) = 9 (years)
So you can see, the higher the interest rate, the faster your money doubles.
I know what you are thinking, “I have to wait 18 years to turn my $50 into just $100? Seriously!”
Chances are you’re going to save a lot more than $50 over the course of 18 years. Each time you make a deposit into your account, it, too, will double in value in 18 years if it earns 4 percent interest.
Ok, let’s use the second equation to find out what interest rate we need to double our money. Again, you can use any amount of money. In my example below, we used $50 again.
So you want your $50 to double in four years so you can use it toward college expenses. What interest rate will you need to double your money?
Divide 72 by the years in which you want to double your money.
72 ÷ 4 (years) = 18 (the interest rate)
You think, “Wow, 18 percent is pretty high, I don’t think I can earn that rate right now.” So you decide to wait 8 years for your money to double. What interest rate do you need now?
72 ÷ 8 (years) = 9 (the interest rate)
You need 9 percent interest to double your money in 8 years.
My do’s and don’t for chores. They are a great way to teach kids how our economy works- if you structure them the right way. Here are a few of my tips. What money lessons work in your household?]]>
Okay- you landed the interview- now what? How do you make sure you win over the hiring manager? The best answer is to understand what they are really looking for and make sure you show off those skills and attributes in the interview. Understanding how they look at you will give you a better opportunity to close the deal.]]>
As a woman working to make ends meet and to raise a family, I understand the challenges and the relationship between the two. That is why I have a personal commitment to help other women become more financially fluent and responsible. Having a money smart mom, helps all of society because she will teach her children. But to have the breakthrough- you have to want to learn. For the money student it needs to be a “want” not a “should.”
Before that “want” can take root I have discovered that women need to work through some money myths first- otherwise the life change will never really take hold. This story is a good start. Stay tuned- there is more to come.
Today new statistics reaffirm what I have seen; more than four in 10 Americans are living paycheck to paycheck and nearly one in 10 doesn’t earn enough to pay for essentials. The study done for Allstate insurance by FTI Consulting, also revealed 8% of Americans don’t have enough cash to make it through the month. They can’t afford everyday essentials.
So 41% of us live from one paycheck to the next- that is where we are in this country. How we got here is important, but it is a story for another day. Today I want to address the reality of this new normal.
If you find you are part of the 41% here are some steps you can take immediately to start changing your situation.
1) Get Real
Know exactly what you have and what you spend every month. When you have a firm understanding of what you are dealing with you can create a smarter plan for changing course.
2) Be Vicious
No not to you friends and family but to your spending. Where can you cut immediately. Do it. No more excuses. Necessities are food, shelter and healthcare. End of story. If you don’t have the cash for cable, cell phones, dinners out, etc. then stop the spending.
3) Be Honest
To be vicious with your spending cuts you need buy-in from the family. When the entire family is on a mission it is an easier sell. Let everyone in on the problem and allow them to contribute ideas to a solution. Show spouses and older kids the money- or at least where you are spending the money. Ask for their suggestions on where to cut – rather than handing down and edict.
4) Map an End in SIght
Make the process finite. We need to cut our spending by $500 a month until we have $5000 in savings. Spelling out the terms to your fellow stakeholders (family members) and showing them how this will help everyone in the long run may not bring cheers but it will help create buy-in.
5) Follow Through
The greatest plans in the world mean nothing unless you follow through. Get mentally tough and make this happen. Isn’t it time you left the 41%?
More like this
The survey of 1,000 Americans age 18 and older was conducted in mid-December. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1% in 95 out of 100 cases.]]>