Review of ‘Smart Money Smart Kids’

Review of Smart Money Smart Kids by Dave Ramsey and Rachel Cruze

What is just as important as personally being smart with money? Why it’s teaching your kids to be smart with money. What good is being able to bless your kids if they live in your basement while in their 20’s and 30’s? That is what this book is about. Smart Money Smart Kids shows how to raise money smart kids in a world where rampant debt is normal.

The first part of the book brings home some common sense money and parenting truths.  Money comes from work, the kids will learn from your example and have grace with your kids. As I read through the stories I thought “This is too simple.” Of course money comes from work and everyone knows kids learn by example. Then I realized that saying is one thing, doing is another. Moreover, how can I live a model of being money smart and teach that to my kids?

Next, the book rolls into practicing the principles with your kids. The authors assume you are already good with money and work on a budget. It showcases a mini-envelope system that kids can learn from. Saving, spending and giving. With these three foundations, kids can learn to be wise with the money they have.

Reflection:

I’ve heard Dave Ramsey say before that “The Ramsey’s will never borrow money.” What an audacious pair it takes to say that. Not just for Dave and his wife but his kids as well. That is reflected in this book. First no car debt, second no college debt and third no wedding debt or any other kind of monetary obligation. The book dives into multiple options on how to stay debt free with your children.

“The Powersjo family will never borrow money.” As I meditate on this I realize it’s only possible to keep a family debt free with planning and intentional money management. Summarizing, it’s up to me and my wife to teach them. Of course, I highly recommend the book. It’s an easy read, makes sense and gives parents plenty of tools to teach their kids to be wise with money.

People can purchase this book here on the official website:  https://www.smartmoneysmartkids.com/

You can read my previous book review here.

Review of ‘IT WORKED FOR ME’

Review of IT WORKED FOR ME by Colin Powell with Tony Koltz

The reason I picked up this book, It worked for me, is I remembered, as a teenager, Colin Powell was the Secretary of State under President George W. Bush.  I knew he was a US Army general and that he served under a republican administration.  However, this was all I knew of him.  I was pleased to find out more information about him personally, his career, where he has served and his leadership philosophies. That is what this book brings to the table.

I have some military experience in my life, so the stories he presented and his leadership style was very familiar to me. I caught myself reflecting on my own habits and the practices of my superiors. One of his stories talked about having to get silly military training complete for his unit and complete the mission at hand. This is even more common in today’s military. His philosophy was to get the small tasks done first to move onto the mission and keep his superiors happy while defending our nation.

Reflection:

Diving into that last thought I can think of two responses. Either we need to fix the silly requirements so we don’t need to do them again or comply and move past the frivolous task. I believe it comes down to time and that both of these responses can be accomplished.  If there is time before the mission, project or quarterly plan, leaders should be able to throw up a red flag to fix the larger issue at hand. If we are on a tight schedule then move to complete the task then carry out the mission. Once the dust settles give the feedback to you leaders that the task needs to change.

Don’t forget to add in your recommendation on how to change it for the better.

A couple of other key points from the book: be where you are most effective as a leader. Colin Powell made sure to hire in people that had strengths that would complement his weaknesses. Turn minor corrections into positive learning experiences. I personally enjoy this one, I detest yelling and demeaning in the military without a valid purpose. If you want a drone to follow you, buy one and program it yourself. If you want an effective worker, team member, or soldier treat them like a human with a certain amount of respect.

Wrap up:

The last bit that I really enjoyed was learning about the different administrations Colin Powell served in and the people he met. He talks about his time with Princess Diana, President Reagan and various people of the press. It’s those little insights that help round out the picture for me. Instead of just the former Secretary of State, Colin Powell becomes more personable.  I’m glad I took the time to look back at his experiences and leadership style.

 

The book can be bought here on Amazon:  https://www.amazon.com/Worked-Me-Life-Leadership/dp/0062135139 

Great By Choice Book Review

Great By Choice Book Review

First off, I want to thank ConnectWise for sending me this book. The company I worked for became a customer of theirs and I was the lead engineer implementing their product. Then ConnectWise saw it fit to send me this book and it was a good read. So thank you to that whole team.

 

Did I enjoy the read? Yes, ‘Great By Choice’ from Jim Collins and Morten Hansen is a summary on a study of 14 companies and answers the question: ‘why did 7 of these companies become great and the others failed?’  Two points that stuck out to me was leaders need fanatic discipline and the ‘20 mile march wins’

 

Discipline is something that I wish I had more of. I can be financially frugal but when it comes to being productive with my side project I can get lazy. Fanatic discipline sets high goals and does whatever necessary to achieve them. It also does not allow the pressures from outside to shift the goals or knock them astray. One new thing I am doing is keeping track of the days that I work on my side project and trying to hit more days worked than not. It gives me a good check in the mirror, ‘am I working at a 10X level?’ Spoiler Alert: I’m not yet, but I hope to reach that level. 

 

‘The 20 mile march’ has some great stories tied to it. I won’t ruin them, I’m also sure the information is out there already, but the stories really bring home the point that you need to be steady with your work. Twenty miles at time, rain or shine, no more and no less. That is what gets you consistency and produces results. I can see this in my own projects as I commit to blogging, working on my side project and other personal or professional goals. Thank you for reading and I hope to post more content soon. 

 

You can find a summary of the book here: https://www.jimcollins.com/books/great-by-choice.html

The book is for sale on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Great-Choice-Uncertainty-Luck-Why-Despite/dp/0062120999

ConnectWise is located here: https://www.connectwise.com/

Review of “The 5 Love Languages”

My thoughts on “The  5 Love Languages” military edition, the secret to love that lasts. 

This book was written by Gary Chapman with Jocelyn Green, I want to make sure I give them the credit for this book. I had heard about the five love languages before but this was my first time reading it and diving into the information. I believe this book is as powerful as you make it. You can read it, process and choose to try to do better; or continue doing what you have been doing. (Just to be blunt).

First off the five love languages are, in no particular order:

  • Words of Affirmation
  • Physical Touch
  • Quality Time
  • Acts of Service
  • Receiving Gifts

After reading this book I do have a better understanding of these love languages.  When I first read about these 5 subjects I selfishly thought that I could reason my way through all of them and this book would not tell me anything new. I was wrong. I was wrong.

Truly, I think this is one of those books that you need to read whether you are single, married, divorced or whatever. It can help you see what you want in a relationship. It will help you see why other people react differently to various actions. It will help you in your relationships, if you allow it to.

The book gives numerous examples as it explains the five love languages and then dives into some deeper questions. How do I know my love language? How to I know my spouses’ love language? How can I apply this to my life and my situation?

I cannot recommend this book enough. Please pick it up and take the content seriously. It is not a difficult read, the version I read was not even 200 pages.  There are other versions of the book applicable to non-military, children and more. If you wish to grow as a person, I recommend reading this book.

– Powersjo

At the time of this post, this book is for sale on his website here.

Quick note, in one the previous books I read, one piece of advice was to read out loud if you want to get better at public speaking. I did not mention it in the post but I did read ‘The 5 Love Languages’ out loud to my wife and I feel this really helps me speak, enunciate and process what I am reading. Just some added food for thought. 

Review of “Thou Shall Prosper”

“Thou Shall Prosper, the Ten Commandments for Making Money”, written by Rabbi Daniel Lapin, is a must read for anyone that wishes to grow as a person. I feel that this book can teach something to anyone and it’s definitely worth the time to read. I want to share a few practical things that I took away from this book.  Leadership, business sense and retirement are a few of the topics, however, this book has much more to offer so make the time to read it.

Leadership:

The fifth chapter is titled “Lead Consistently and Constantly” and I want to highlight three points.

– A change of culture or systems should be slow while a change (removal) of people should be quick. Coming in late to work is a choice that spreads to other team members. Looking forward to leave work because you don’t enjoy what you do leads to a poor attitude negatively effecting others.

– People, processes and products change but core values should never change. If people are negatively impacting the workplace, including yourself, either fix the attitude or let go of the individual. Alternatively, the mission of your business should be sound and constant.

– Profit is a way to measure the success of a business.  Profit matters in business: if you cannot afford to give your team members adequate raises because of poor profits, do not expect that they will stick around for long.

Leading people is an evolving skill. Be the example that you want your team members to emulate and treat them as if they are already high performers. Hold high standards for yourself and your team.

Business Sense:

The seventh chapter is titled “Learn to Foretell the Future”, it highlights that you should be identifying trends in your business. Rabbi Lapin talks about taking in account culture to help predict the future. This topic is difficult for me to understand but I relate to it best this way. An approximate timeline of ‘recent’ invention phenomenons would be plastic production in 1950’s, mainstream computer use around 1975 (culture of video games or workplace computers) and widespread internet acceptance in the 2000’s (the culture of an online world, email).  If you could see the trend of what is coming next, you could prepare your business to be ready around 2025 for the next big revolution. I do not have the answer, but it is fascinating to reflect on.

Retirement:

Selfishly, this was my favorite chapter because I loathe the thought of dying old and bored in retirement. I’d rather be working until I dropped dead than retire around 65 to rot away and do nothing. One point Rabbi Lapin made is that retirement is selfish. You are stealing away your productivity from the world when you stop working and aren’t useful to anyone. When I reflect on that, it makes me value myself and my work. We all make a difference to someone when we work. We need to have pride in that value we bring to the table and don’t seal it away in retirement.

I cannot recommend this book enough and my small summary does not do it justice. Many more words of wisdom are ready to be absorbed and I am grateful for the time spent reading. I encourage you to pick it up and I made another post here about character that was also inspired by this book. Thanks for reading, cheers!

– Powersjo

At the time of this post, his site has this book for sale here.