It’s worse than you thought

April 10, 2017

By  via   Article

It’s worse than you thought: Americans are drastically under-saved for retirement

“Only a third of Americans save in a 401(k) plan

There’s no easy way to say this: Americans are not saving for their futures.

The numbers for retirement savings already looked discouraging with the average American couple only having put away $5,000, but the situation may be worse: only a third of working Americans are saving money in an employer-sponsored or tax-deferred retirement account, according to U.S. Census Bureau researchers, as reported in Bloomberg. And that’s only if their employers even offer such plans, which, according to this research, only 14% do (and they’re likely large companies).

See: Here is how much you need to save for retirement

Saving for the future has always been a problem for Americans, but it’s beginning to catch up with them now as life expectancy increases, and savings may have to last a lot longer. The consequences of not saving appropriately could be detrimental: women 65 and older, for example, are working more now than they did 20 years ago, mostly because they can’t afford not to do so.

Many experts urge millennials to take note and begin saving as soon as possible, though many have trouble putting money away for such a distant goal and struggle to envision themselves as retirees. Younger workers may also question how to balance their paychecks: saving for retirement is important, but some place higher importance on saving for a home or another financial goal, said John Scott, director of the Retirement Savings Project, part of Pew Charitable Trusts, a Philadelphia-based nonprofit non-governmental public policy organization.”

It’s almost impossible to sell the future

April 3, 2017

Via   Article

“If you’re trying to persuade someone to make an investment, buy some insurance or support a new plan, please consider that human beings are terrible at buying these things.

What we’re good at is ‘now.’

Right now.

When we buy a stake in the future, what we’re actually buying is how it makes us feel today.

We move up all the imagined benefits and costs of something in the future and experience them now. That’s why it’s hard to stick to a diet (because celery tastes bad today, and we can’t easily experience feeling healthy in ten years). That’s why we make such dumb financial decisions (because it’s so tempting to believe magical stories about tomorrow).

If you want people to be smarter or more active or more generous about their future, you’ll need to figure out how to make the transaction about how it feels right now.”

5 myths about millennials

April 3, 2017

By Jessica Stillman via   Article

5 Myths About Millennials That Have Been Completely Debunked by Science

“Read and believe everything out there on the supposed traits and preferences of young people, and you’d come away thinking those aged 18-35 are basically a separate species. And not a very nice one. Entitled, disloyal, incompetent, fragile, young people have been called a series of names that would probably provoke a fist fight in a different setting. … the vast majority of these claims have been thoroughly debunked by science. …

1. Millennials are way different than other generations.

… an article in the The Economist, which explains that people all ‘want roughly the same things regardless of when they were born: to be given interesting work to do, to be rewarded on the basis of their contributions and to be given the chance to work hard and get ahead.’ … Pew Research … Millennials are pretty similar to where previous generations were at the same age: Here’s median household income (in 2013 dollars) for each group when they were 18-33: Boomers: $60,068 … Gen Xers: $63,365 … Millennials: $61,003

2. Millennials are unsatisfied at work.

Nope, this one isn’t true either. ‘Compared to Boomers and Gen Xers, Millennials reported higher levels of overall company and job satisfaction, satisfaction with job security, recognition, and career development and advancement, but reported similar levels of satisfaction with pay and benefits and the work itself, and turnover intentions,’ claims research in the Journal of Business and Psychology ….

3. Millennials are disloyal.

‘Contrary to popular perceptions Millennials actually stay with their employers longer than Generation X workers did at the same ages… Millennials are less likely to have been with their employer for less than a year than Generation X workers were at the same age, and they are more likely to have been with their employer for a fairly long period like 3 to 6 years,’ points out The White House’s 15 Economic Facts About Millennials ….

4. Millennials are lazy.

… here’s what The Economist says about this one: ‘CEB, a consulting firm, polls 90,000 American employees each quarter. It finds that the Millennials among them are in fact the most competitive: 59 percent of them, in the latest poll, said competition is ‘what gets them up in the morning,’ compared with 50 percent of baby-boomers.’ …

5. Millennials are financially illiterate.

… A survey by the firm of respected financial advisor David Ramsey of more than 1,000 Americans found that Millennials ‘are not that far behind many of those who are closest to retirement. Nearly 60 percent of Millennials have less than $10,000 saved for retirement, but roughly half of Baby Boomers are in the same boat, despite the fact that this generation has had as much as half a century to save.'”

Barriers to authentic leadership

April 3, 2017

By Laren Miller via   Article

Here are the barriers to authentic leadership

“Authentic leadership walks hand-in-hand with well-developed emotional intelligence and collaborative communication, grounded in honesty, humility and integrity. You can spot authentic leaders by their ability to manage effectively their own emotions and the emotions of others as they create a container of psychological safety and engagement fueled by consistent sincerity and respect for all concerned. …

You can spot authentic leaders by their ability to manage effectively their own emotions and the emotions of others as they create a container of psychological safety and engagement fueled by consistent sincerity and respect for all concerned. …

Authentic leadership is a space that many leaders desire to occupy, but the following “four P’s” pollute and sabotage even the best efforts to step into this highly respected position:

Position over People: … Anytime you have an attachment to a specific position in life to feel important, valued or enough just as you are, you render yourself vulnerable to an emotional state of clinging due to the belief that without a specific position of authority you can’t feel successful. …

Power: The use of power over other people to achieve one’s personal goals is weakness disguised as strength. Bullying behavior will quickly take the main stage in leadership positions when it is not tempered by gratitude and humility. Power over others is a wicked little serpent, which too often overrides the best version of who you desire to be, thereby stripping you of respect and admiration. …

Popularity: The need to be right, liked and understood quickly dilutes leadership efficacy. A large part of authenticity is the ability to speak the truth in love, with respect, maintaining the ability to honor the person over the behavior. Too often, the desire to be popular will lead to a mismatch of employee-position, which does not honor all concerned; rather, it acts as a small drop of ink in a glass of pure water. …

Possessions: … Possessions too often blind human beings of what brings true and lasting happiness in life: meaningful relationships. When leadership is fueled by motives for more ‘stuff’ in life the condition of ‘not enoughness’ tends to override good judgment and the ability to maintain two attributes of authentic leadership: humility and integrity. The pursuit of possessions often leads to putting things before people and invites the temptation of boasting.”

Solid things into verbs

April 3, 2017

By Pascal Finette via February 10, 2017 email from

When Solid Things Turn Into Intangible Verbs

“… one of the deeply relevant and disruptive trends which we are already seeing is what Kevin Kelly describes as:

‘In the next 30 years we will continue to take solid things – an automobile, a shoe – and turn them into intangible verbs. Products will become services and processes.’

The consequences of this are far reaching and deeply disruptive. Take ride-sharing companies such as Uber or Lyft: They took the $20,000+ capital expenditure which required constant service and maintenance and is typically insured (as it is so expensive to acquire in the first place) – a car – and turned it into an on-demand service delivered through an app. Instead of owning a car to drive yourself from A to B, you now simply uber.

What this means for entrepreneurs is that you should look hard at opportunities to turn solid things, which exist today, into intangible verbs. Unearthing these opportunities can lead to some of the biggest business opportunities of our times. Case in point: Car ownership vs Uber. Disk storage vs Dropbox. Server farms vs Amazon.”

You deserve a raise

March 27, 2017

By Anna Bahney via   Article

5 arguments you deserve a raise — that your boss can’t ignore

1. You have been an achiever, not merely a doer

… A doer is someone who focuses on tasks, while achievers focus on results. It’s the difference between ‘I wrote business plans’ and ‘I secured new business with plans I wrote’ — or ‘I managed people’ versus ‘The team I managed launched a new product that had high metrics of success XYZ.’

2. You’ve got a ‘no job too big, no job too small’ attitude

… Find ways to demonstrate that you have been the embodiment of an easy-to-work-with ‘no job too big, no job too small’ colleague and employee. … Point that out in a positive way, by showing how you enhanced and improved the workload you were given.

3. Your collegial corridor behavior is impeccable

Now, it’s not going to floor anyone if your top reasons for a raise are that you’re nice, prompt and prepared. Those are usually assumed in a workplace. But the lack of those qualities and behaviors could keep you from a raise. …

4. You’ve demonstrated growth — and you’re still growing

Everyone progressively improves over time, but that doesn’t mean you can’t stop and take measure right now. Find examples of ways you have already become an asset to the company — and will doubtlessly become more valuable as you learn and grow further. … remember to be mindful and keep track of challenges you’re blowing through on your own: Otherwise you might quickly forget how hard it was to learn that new program or master that new style or work on that new contract, once you get used to it.

5. You’re a creator and innovator

If you’ve created something new — a new product, a new protocol, a new system, even, perhaps a new job for yourself — you’re on track for a raise. Supervisors appreciate it when you’re going above and beyond.’I give raises when someone exceeds my expectations, usually when employees take something on that wasn’t originally in their scope of work’ … ‘people ultimately create a position for themselves by making a suggestion, implementing it and taking ownership over it.'”


Dissent is an obligation

March 27, 2017

By Bill Taylor via   Article

True Leaders Believe Dissent Is an Obligation

“… Robin Richards, chair and CEO of the CareerArc Group, makes it clear how he wants his colleagues to behave. ‘Don’t have a meeting with your boss where you agree with him on everything he says,’ Richards explained. ‘If you have an obligation to dissent, then we get the best minds and we get the best outcomes. People like living in that environment. They feel valuable. People become fearless.’

Truth be told, very few people have the guts to dissent, very few people become fearless, because very few leaders emphasize and celebrate their obligation to do so. Edgar Schein, professor emeritus at MIT Sloan School of Management and an expert on leadership and culture, has spent decades studying the attributes that define great executives. One of the attributes he highlights time and again is humility — the sort that invites dissent. Sadly, that kind of humility is all too rare.

Schein once asked a group of students what it means to be promoted to the rank of manager. ‘They said without hesitation, ‘It means I can now tell others what to do.’’ That’s precisely the know-it-all style of leadership that has led to so much crisis and disappointment. ‘Deep down, many of us believe that if you are not winning, you are losing,’ Schein warns. The ‘tacit assumption’ among executives ‘is that life is fundamentally and always a competition.’ But humility and ambition, he argues, need not be at odds. Instead, humility in the service of ambition is the most effective and sustainable mindset for leaders who aspire to do big things in a world filled with huge unknowns.”