Robert Kiyosaki writes for Yahoo Finance
Traders like Steven were buying and selling commodity futures -- as well as put and call options -- as fast as they could.
For Steven, it didn't matter if the market was going up or down. He was busily buying and selling as he ran between the gold and crude oil pits. In less than an hour, he'd made over $70,000 in profits. Not bad for a guy in his 20s.
During that hour, I was standing next to a NYMEX employee. I asked him if he understood what was going on. He replied, "No. I've worked here for nineteen years and I've never bothered to learn. I like my job, and I don't like the pressure these guys go through every day." Although I didn't ask, I suspect he's lucky to make $70,000 a year.
The NYMEX employee and Steven both made choices. One choice involved stressful, high risk, time consuming work that had potential for a great reward. (And, undoubtedly, potential for great risk.) The other came to work each day and did his job, but made no effort to learn about other's jobs or expand his skills.
The resulting rewards differ vastly.
It's not just like this in the stock exchange world. I see it in my own work life. I'm a hard worker and I'm good at what I do. In fact, between my first day in an HR department(1999) and when I turned in my letter of resignation after giving birth to Offspring (2003) I was able to more than triple my salary. I started out as an HR admin in the spring of 1999 and by spring of 2001 I had my own admin.
However, since I resigned from full time work my rise to the top has been severely stunted. Not because of discrimination against working mothers, but because I made a choice. I work 20-25 hours per week now. I get regular raises and good performance reviews, but I don't put in the hours I once did.
It's a choice. My choice was made very carefully. Is your current career location the result of a careful choice or do you blame the circumstances around you for your success or lack thereof?
One way to approach the coming changes is to ask yourself whether you'll be like my friend Steven Spivak -- trading rapidly, earning over $70,000 an hour -- or like that 19-year NYMEX employee, who's content to work for $70,000 a year at best. While both men are working for a dollar that's declining in value, one is earning more than enough of them to stay ahead of its erosion.
Both options are available to each of us. Which reality you choose -- deciding on how much you can earn and how fast you can earn it -- will determine your station in life five years from now, when things start to get really sticky.
More than once I've had people in my office complaining that their co-worker got a promtion, why weren't they getting promoted? Or, why is my raise only 3%? I've had the fun task of asking what they've done to deserve a promotion or raise. Usually the blustering response is that they've been here for X years and they deserve it.
Nevermind that co-worker works harder, makes an effort to learn as much as possible about the business, making co-worker a more valuable employee. They've been here X years and deserve it.
That, my evil friends, is what we HR experts call delusional behavior.