Blog, Business, Paul Saunders

How To Be Financially Successful In Your Personal Life

Becoming financially successful doesn’t happen overnight. Increasing your net worth and succeeding in your career requires plenty of hard work and learned habits. If you want to learn how to be financially successful in life, there are a few steps to take that will prove to pay off.

Live Below Your Means

Although you may have the mindset of a successful individual, it doesn’t mean that you should live like one. Don’t invest your money in items you can’t afford or don’t need. That means be frugal with your money and don’t worry about impressing others with physical objects that will lose their novelty over time. Investing your money in items that don’t offer anything in return will lead to temporary satisfaction instead of long-term stability. Instead, put your extra earnings in the stock market, a 401(k), or your savings account.

Set Financial Goals

Obtaining financial wealth will require setting goals to ensure that you have a plan of action and that you understand the necessary steps to implement your vision. The goals should be realistic to ensure that you stay motivated and don’t become discouraged. When you have a huge goal, break them down into milestones so that they are in easy to reach steps. You can also celebrate each time that you have a small victory to ensure that you reward yourself and continue to stay on track.

Ask for Help from Experts

When you ask questions or get help you are expanding on the knowledge  you have. The more you get into the practice of asking questions the more financially literate you become. Getting help from successful professionals is necessary to ensure that you can avoid mistakes and obtain guidance. Ask questions, find a mentor, and get different opinions to ensure that you can become more knowledgeable about how to grow your money over time.

Create an Emergency Fund

Most financial experts will tell you to save at least $1,000 for an emergency fund, which will allow you to pay for unexpected costs. Costs that could range from car repairs to medical expenses, an emergency fund will offer peace of mind. If you don’t have something created, you could end up opening credit cards, or taking loans to cover the cost. When you have the funds already established, you won’t need to go into debt. You should also save at least three to six months of income to use if you suffer from a job loss to ensure that your bills can continue to be paid until you secure employment. The biggest goal here is to have enough money for those emergencies so that you aren’t panicking for additional funds.

Being financially successful is a challenging, time-consuming process. You will reach that success sooner if you start now though.

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Blog, Business

Where Can An Entrepreneur Find Funding For Their Business?

This blog post originally appeared on Paul Saunders’ website.

The average entrepreneur’s first concern when starting a business is going to be how they are going to finance their idea. If their idea is going to need a relatively small investment, they may use their own funds, or they may turn to their family and friends to support them. If they are not able to do that, they can to go to a bank to get a business loan. Yet, for some that need more, or just for those who are not able to do any of those options, there are other methods to get financed.

Local Loans

One resource that is often overlooked is going to be your chamber of commerce, which will be able to give you information on where you can get local funding. Often they will send you to your local business development center, with some universities having them. These business centers can get you in contact with other entrepreneurs so that you can network, and meet other investors. They would be able to go over loan information, and even assist you in applying for it. They are going to love if you develop a local business in the area and are typically more than happy to assist you.

Angel Investors

Angel investors are typically individuals looking to invest in companies they deem promising. These angels can invest money upwards of $10,000 in a business idea. To find angels, you can use Angel Capital Association. They have nationwide reach, with over 330 groups in their system. Not only do they assist with direct loans, but they will also, at times, even host events in order to provide networking opportunities. If the idea of taking money from someone online does not sound appealing, check your local community for angel groups.

Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding, as the name dictates is a source of funding that stems from a large group of people who give varying amounts of money to an idea. One crowdfunding resource is Kickstarter. Kickstarter is an excellent platform to utilize to fund a product, or a fleshed out idea. On Kickstarter, you will be able to set goals, and tiers that supporters are able to pledge to. The money they pledge is their investment to the product without expecting money in return. In order to get more funding though, certain campaigns will offer incentives to get interested parties to pay more. The product they are wanting to fund is going to a part of that. This is a good tool to use if you feel that the vast market needs the product you are trying to create. You will also need to advertise a lot if you use this platform. In order to expose the item to the market, social media is heavily relied on for this method of financing.

Venture Capital

Venture Capital is for those who are looking to get over $1 million in funding. When looking at this option, know that you will need to be very prepared. Venture Capitalists require a very careful and detailed business plan. Yet, the benefits are that they will be able to fund larger quantities to businesses. Venture Capitalists are taking their clients money and investing in companies that they believe will be able to give them a high return relatively quickly. They will be looking to get 3-10 times what they gave within the following 5-7 years. One of the easiest ways to meet one would be through your contacts, whether that be other investors or entrepreneurs. If that is not an option, you can look to use the  National Venture Capital Association to pitch your idea to.

Funding can be difficult to achieve, but by looking at what kind of company you are looking to create there will be resources for it. If one resource doesn’t work, try another. The first steps to building a business can be challenging, but your perseverance will pay out.

Blog, Business

Some Priorities for Young Entrepreneurs

This blog post originally appeared on Paul Saunders’ website.

As entrepreneurship and independence become all the more valued in our society, we are seeing a major shift in our workforce, hence the recent, rapid rise of the gig economy. By definition, this sort of working mentality emphasizes temporary positions that aid independent workers make ends meet. Such gigs are often contracted out by larger organizations and, if one’s cards are played right, can be quite lucrative.

However, it is imperative to note that the days of classic entrepreneurship are far from over. Per a recent BNP Paribas Global Entrepreneur Report, members of the millennial generation have been starting businesses at younger ages than their older counterparts, and this trend is not projected to slow any time soon. Millennials are more eager to apply all they learned in college and other positions to create their own success, and they are willing to take the risks necessary to achieve those goals.

As more and more of these young adults venture into the realm of entrepreneurship, it is important that they reevaluate their priorities every so often to ensure they align with the current state and scale of their business. With that in mind, let us examine some important priorities every young entrepreneur ought to hold.

Follow your own schedule

It is no secret that entrepreneurs are held to some outlandish standards that often force them to prioritize work over fulfilling their own basic needs, namely eating, sleeping, and maintaining personal hygiene. However, such habits will only propel them further down the road to burnout.

Therefore, it is imperative entrepreneurs follow their own schedule and ignore the entrepreneurial buzz that surrounds them. Just because Elon Musk gets the bare minimum of sleep — in one of his own manufacturing facilities, no less — does not mean you have to follow suit.

Be honest with others (and yourself)

As an entrepreneur, you may feel the need to shoulder your own burdens and avoid delegating tasks, as you do not want to let others see you sweat. However, maintaining such an attitude will thwart your long-term goals, rather than allowing them to thrive.

Therefore, it is imperative you be honest with yourself and those around you, and seek help when you are feeling stretched too thin. It may be difficult to admit at first, but once you find individuals you can trust with the smaller tasks, you discover just how much bandwidth you have to be creative and turn your ideas into reality.

Do not downgrade your goals

Once you are in the throes of overseeing and operating your business, you will likely wonder why you started this venture to begin with. When these moments arise, it is important to keep your long-term goals at the forefront of your mind and resist the temptation of lowering your own expectations. You began your business for a valid reason; stick to the path you have forged for yourself, regardless of how difficult it may be at times. You will certainly thank yourself for your dedication and perseverance.

Blog

How FinTech Could Disrupt the Financial Industry

Technology is one of the most ubiquitous and unstoppable forces in our modern world, impacting nearly every industry across the board. Naturally, finance is no exception.

However, technology seems to pose a larger threat to the financial realm than any other, as banks and other institutions have employed a business model that has worked rather well over the years, driving large profits and creating further room for growth.

Financial technology, otherwise known as fintech, aims to disrupt this business model in order to bring more financial inclusion to those who would not normally be granted the opportunity, such as blue collar workers, marginalized people groups, or members of rural communities.

Fintech has drastically changed the climate of the financial industry, forcing smaller firms and large institutions into a state of fight or flight. Either they adapt their policies to remain relevant in the eyes of the public, or they hold tightly to their outdated practices and fade out of the picture over time.

With that in mind, let us examine the other ways in which fintech could impact the financial industry.

Venture capital firms are not as necessary as they once were

In the realm of fintech, venture capital firms are no longer a necessary method of acquiring funding. This shift was exhibited at the beginning of 2016, when global venture capital investment in fintech decreased by approximately $22 billion from 2015.

Some view this as an indicator that venture capital firms are losing authority. However, a popular opinion is that venture capital firms now feel less inclined to support the next great disruptor of the financial industry, hence their lack of interest in funding even the most innovative designs.

Banking fees may become a thing of the past

It has long been rumored that banks make upwards of $4 billion annually just from the fees they obtain during fund transfers. Because of fintech’s mission to make finance more accessible and inclusive, many of its startups seek to decrease or eliminate banking fees entirely, even in international transfers, allowing their customers to keep more of their own hard-earned money.

Mobile banking could continue to rise in popularity

Although mobile banking is already a prevalent force in many regions of our modern world, it is only anticipated to grow with the fintech industry, which is projected to expand by 55 percent within the next two years alone. Therefore, we could see digital wallet systems like Apple and Android Pay reaching into even the farthest corners of the world by 2020.

Evidently, great changes are not simply looming on the horizon; they are already here, slowly shaping the future of one of the most influential industries in the world. Regardless of what is to come, it will be intriguing to see how far the financial realm will come in just five years’ time.