Human beings have an amazing ability to learn, but our motivation to do so tends to decrease with age.  As children, we are naturally curious and free to explore the world around us.  As adults, we are much more interested in preserving what we learned, to the point of resisting any information that challenges our views and opinions.  Unsurprisingly, there is now demand for employees who can demonstrate high levels of learnability, the desire and ability to quickly grow and adapt one’s skill set to remain employable throughout their working life.

One of the major cultural and intellectual changes of the digital age is that information has been commoditized, and access to it is now ubiquitous. With the right question, we can all pretty much find the answer to anything, so long as we are able to judge if the answer is true.  The main career consequence of this is that … Read More


Find a job you enjoy doing, and you will never have to work a day in your life.  If you are one of the lucky ones, even a job you enjoy doing can become tedious after many years.  If you’re grinding through your days, what do you do?  Launch a new career, or plan for early retirement?  The U.S. Census Bureau states that the average retirement age in the United States is 63 years old.

One of the biggest challenges to early retirement is figuring out how to pay for health care.  Regarding health care coverage, “early” retirement would be before age 65, at which time most Americans become eligible for Medicare.  You’ll pay a hefty premium until you become Medicare-eligible.  If you’re exiting the workforce before age 65, plan on budgeting $500 to $1,000 a month per person to purchase health insurance.  Once on Medicare, you still pay premiums, but … Read More

Money from your 401(k) plan

You already know you shouldn’t tap your retirement plan to fund frivolous purchases, yet in a handful of cases it just might be okay to take a loan.  Retirement plans account for a large chunk of personal wealth and in order to get the most out of your retirement plan, you should let the money accumulate over the course of your career.  But, sometimes, emergencies will call for the more drastic step of taking a plan loan.  Here’s how to borrow from your 401(k) without ending up with a big tax bill.

Depending on whether your plan permits borrowing, you’re generally allowed to take up to 50 percent of your vested account balance to a max of $50,000, whichever is less. You have five years to repay the loan.

Your plan administrator will withhold 20 percent of the amount to cover income taxes and you’ll trigger a 10 percent … Read More