In today’s (06/29/2005) column from Harry Newton, he gives some good advice based on his years as an entreprenuer when compared to his former Harvard Business School classmates.
Messed up private lives: When I graduated from Harvard Business School in 1969, half the class went into investment banking. The other half went into management consulting. I didn’t. I became an entrepreneur, and for that, was universally derided. By our 20th reunion, I was gaining respect. By our 25th I was being consulted. My classmates’ “careers” had hit a wall. They’d been passed over for boss. the younger kids had fresher ideas and worked harder. My classmates had lived beyond their means. They were onto their second and third marriages. They had no savings. They were overweight and out of condition. And now there were no jobs for 50-year plus gray-hairs. What could I recommend? Sadly, little. Could I help their kids? Now, I increasingly do that. I give my standard talk:
+ Learn a new skill every six months. (Samples: negotiation; computers, investing, Excel.)
+ Get involved with business startups. Ultimately being an entrepreneur is what will give you peace of mind in your old age.
+ Save at least 10% of your income every month. Invest it in a wide variety of ventures.
+ Learn how to pick ventures.
+ Stay healthy. Lots of exercise and no over-eating.
+ Give back.