Thursday, October 25, 2018

The Art of the Good Life #45 : If you run your own race, you can't lose.

This chapter of the book cuts pretty close to the bone.

For the past thousands of years, the work of humanity has evolved from that of a generalist to that of a specialist. Our ancestors have to forage, hunt, build their shelters and cook their own food to survive in the wilderness. These days, you can't even call yourself a marketing executive, you might have to specialise in a niche like social media marketing for an employer to take you seriously.

The lesson from this book is to stop reminiscing about being a successful generalist. One formula for success in modern society is repeatedly finding yourself a smaller niche and smaller niche until you can credibly be that big fish in the small pond. I think this lesson is supported widely in local salary surveys. Professional degrees have a higher pay and employment rate than general degrees.

Reading this chapter cuts closer to the bone as I experiment with my new life as a trainer.

The industry is full of forex trainers who dabble in approaches in technical analysis. They charge easily $3,000 to $5,000 per ticket and their courses are basically gateways to more expensive mentorship or training programs. This practice is so widespread that a lot of my potential clients ask me whether I will do the same to them. ( In case you're wondering, my answer is no. )

Over the next year, I will trying to find a niche in this super-competitive industry.

  • We will not focus on any market instrument - our course is outcome driven. You sign up with me if you are interested in early retirement, not because I am talking about some new fangled investment product. 
  • We have an unmatched alignment of objectives where I personally invest in a co-created portfolio. Can you imagine asking your forex trainer to put his course proceeds into entry points chosen by you ?
  • Clients get membership in a closed Facebook group to received subsequent updates on additional material without paying additional costs.
Finally, here's something that is paradoxical that the author fails to share with reader.

If you want to build a credible niche product, further specialisation requires generalist knowledge. 

Just like the iPhone, financial knowledge is further enhanced with knowledge from other disciplines like psychology, sociology and philosophy. This requires a broad liberal arts mindset. For example, I think my exhortation to readers to save more money largely fall on deaf ears because in order to save money, the person needs to have a conscientious personality. It's harder to save if you are not conscientious, which is why regular savings plans have their role in society today. 

Over the weekend, I will be combining Pierre Bourdieu's insight on habitus to explain why having an engineering background can mystically convert income to wealth at a rate 22% faster even when measured in sample space of millionaires.

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