If you don’t come from wealth or privilege, chances are that, you’re in the most difficult generation ever, for young people to become wealthy. Here are my thoughts on how to beat the trap.
I don’t need to tell you that globally, it’s harder than ever to get a great job. Even more difficult to get a well-paying job. Chances are that most people barely have a savings at the end of the month, after meeting their daily needs. Then jobs that existed before are quickly being taken over by machines, or even more skilled workers who are ready to work for less. So, the competition is steep. But when life hands you lemons…
Now let me first debunk the belief that entrepreneurship is the only way to accumulate wealth. Fact: when Microsoft went public in 1986, about 12,000 of its employees became millionaires (in dollars). So, ease up on the employee-bashing. However, your personal wealth journey starts with one fact: no one owes you anything, not even your parents.
Also, wealth is a function of personal habit and choices, so it’s really not about who owes you anything, but the choices you make. The two most powerful forms of capital on earth – “ideas” and “relationships”. I repeat: ideas that can generate wealth or leverage resources & relationships that can be leveraged to create opportunities for you. Several business people didn’t also have the capital to start their business, or scale it up. Most either had an idea they could trade up or relationships they could leverage on to access opportunities (or even capital).
So, build a track record. That track record may include a time used to build a skillset, years of work, experience in a particular field, being part of a team that did something. But young people build a track record, because every serious person who wants to deal with you will ask the question: “what is he/she doing?” or “what has she/he done?” Your track record is your real identity in the wealth market. Also, it makes it easy for those that have a relationship with you to vouch for you. Oh! Also, in this generation of records, ensure you keep a good record of your track. What you did? When? Now, relationships are everything. Bill Gates’ mum was key in him meeting those in IBM who gave Microsoft its first big break. It’s the person inside who opens the door for the person outside to come inside.
Get a mentor and a sponsor. Get into relationships with those in your industry and those outside it. Easiest way to build strong relationships with anyone is to offer to be of help to them. Everyone like a valuable person. You may not have a fraction of their wealth or influence, but you can give your time. So rather than say, please can you help me, how about you say “you’re working on this, can I offer to help with this portion for free” Get into their value chain, and offer them serious value
You will quickly become valuable, and they will let you into deeper value process, and that’s how you can to build yourself. Trust me, there are many influential people who need valuable assistance that isn’t money. What’s more you keep your dignity in the process.
Also learn how to leverage. Leverage means using the tools you have your maximum advantage. Once you get into the value chain, don’t get comfortable doing things how it’s always being done. Find ways to multiply the usefulness of your portion, and trade up its value. Also, it’s more important to be passionate about whatever you find to do, than even following your passion. Too many people pass up on great opportunities that can start them on the way, because they are idle waiting for what they are passionate about. Start somewhere.
Now, ideas have exponential results. When coupled with relationships, it’s even more explosive. Take out time every day to think. Oh, and keep a journal while doing it.
Ask 3 questions:
1. What problem can I solve?
2. What process can I improve?
3. How can I make wealth of 1 & 2
Don’t do everything. Focus on just one that of those ideas that you have the most chance of being successful with. Then pour yourself into developing it. When it’s developed, identify who can help you make it happen, and use your track record to sell it to them. This also works if you’re an employee. Your employer will find you more valuable if you’re bringing new ways to improve the business or grow it. Who do you think will be up for promotion or new roles in the company, the normal staff or the thinking staff?
Don’t be scared to fail when you launch out. Any venture capitalist or business person will tell you they take a person who has tried severally and failed more seriously compared to a person who didn’t try at all. Oh! And you lose 100% of the chances you don’t take.
I won’t focus on growing your wealth. Why? Too many people aren’t even making enough to even be able to grow anything. A person can’t earn, and you’re telling him/her to invest. Won’t work. This thread is to get you into making income and value first. Growing it is next stage; so, develop ideas and explore the relationship you’ve cultivated to implement them. And even raise capital for your ideas. When doing this, your track record will show people you’re credible. And credibility is high currency in the wealth market. So, get into the wealth value chain.
-Start something today. No matter how small. It’s track record.
– Think of ideas on how to create value or improve the value of the place you work.
– If lacking any capacity (capital or skills) to Implement the ideas, use your relationships
Look forward to seeing you creating value and wealth. It’s about time for young people (regardless of their background, privilege or skillset) to get in on the action.