Every week I write something about the stock market - how to, when to and where to put your money and how to protect it from loss if you do. This week I want to say something very important to the young folks about success. And you parents take note if your kids are still young.
One of these days you are going to graduate from high school and, hopefully, college. Either one fits the bill here - - even if you don't graduate.
A very small percentage of your peers are going to become very successful. Success in the U.S. is mostly defined as someone who makes a lot of money; that is our usual yardstick. From your graduating class there will be 2 or 3 who make it big time and 6 or 8 who will do very well. Most of them will end up owning their own businesses. Upon graduation you will have no idea who the next Bill Gates, Jack Welch or Warren Buffett is, but he is right there in your old class picture. Just when you need him you have lost contact for so many years that he probably won't remember you or want to help you.
People are assets. You can't run any business without their input whether it is muscle, brains or money. You use them and they use you - and there is nothing wrong with that. This interaction is what makes the business world go around.
Wouldn't it have been great if you had kept in contact with Bill Gates from the time you graduated? As he made strides with his company you might have become one of his key people, but he forgot you existed - and it wasn't his fault. You let him go.
Don't squander your assets, your people. Here is a method that will work. No, not right away, but over the years it could easily change your life.
When you graduate take your yearbook and have everyone sign it. Even those you hardly know at all. Get their addresses and phone numbers and emails also. Every year on that graduation date you send out a yearly up date on what you have done during that year - got married, changed jobs, had a promotion, where you went on vacation, added a new kid to the family or what happened to your dog and your dreams and aspirations if you want to. Personal stuff. Ask them how they are doing? Every one is important. Do this every year and do your best to keep the list current. You may want to add others to your list.
Not much will be going on during the first 10 years, but as certain of your old friends start to move up the ladder they will be looking for people to help them and you will float up to the top of the list. Mr. Rising Star needs help and he knows where you are and all about what you have been doing. You might be just the one he needs to help launch his ship of state.
People are assets. This kind of investment can really pay off.