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Tuesday, August 4, 2020
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Investing 101: Investing for Beginners

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Investing Introduction

Investing is one of those topics that most people tend to avoid. This could be the case for a number of reasons such as knowing a person who tried to invest in the markets and ended up going bankrupt as an extreme example or just losing a large sum of money from making a bad investment decision. But, on the flip side there have been a significant number of people who were able to transform their entire lives from them. So, it’s definitely one of those things that are worth looking into. This blog post is intended to break it down into small understandable sections that can be followed and understood very easily.

This particular blog post will focus primarily on what an investment is, and the different types of investments that are available.

Firstly, What is Investing? Investing is simply the act of committing money or capital to an endeavour with the expectation of obtaining an additional income or profit. Or as the legendary investor Warren Buffet would define investing as: “… the process of laying out money now to receive more money in the future.”
To ultimate goal of investing would be to put your money to work in one or more investment types with a diversified ratio in hopes of gaining a return.

Below you can see a well designed Info-graphic displaying a well diversified portfolio to give you a rough idea.

Healthy Diversified Portfolio

What are the different types of Investments?

There is a variety of investment types to choose from. Ranging from individual stocks, bonds, real estate, closed-end mutual funds to ETFs and various other alternative investments. We will break each type down into understand paragraphs.

Stocks

A stock of a company represents a small percentage ownership in that company which allows you as an investor to participate in the company’s successes or failures through the stocks value and the dividends received. In the category of stocks, there are two types of stocks. One is ‘common stocks’ and the other is ‘preferred stocks’.

Holders of common stocks do have voting rights in shareholder’s meetings and the right to receive dividends if they are declared by the company. Preferred stockholders do not have voting rights but do receive a preference in terms of the payment of dividends.

Bonds

Bonds, simply put are loans made to either the government or large organisations. These would include national governments, cities, and corporations. In exchange of periodic interest payments and the purchase of the bond back once matured upon a pre-agreed date.

Bonds can be purchased on the secondary market the same way as stocks and the value can also fluctuate on a number of factors; the most important direction being interest rates.

Mutual Funds

A mutual fund is a bunch of investments pooled into one, which is managed by an investment manager. This allows investors to have their money invested into stocks, bonds, and other investment vehicles which is usually stated in the fund’s prospectus. Each fund has different investment options. Mutual funds allow investors to achieve a diversified exposure to a number of investment holdings.

Real Estate

Real estate investments can be made when purchasing a commercial or residential property directly.

The Landlord (Owner), would be responsible for paying the mortgage, taxes and covering maintenance costs. The landlord would typically charge enough rent to cover the costs mentioned above. Sometimes, landlords tend to charge even more in order to produce a monthly profit. The appreciation of properties gained over a period of time leaves the owner with a more valuable asset. Before investing in real estate, it is wise to conduct research on market conditions and evaluating if it would be a worthy investment.

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All You Need To Know About Instagram Engagement Groups

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People are finally realising the power they have with the biggest internet photo sharing app with recent statistics showing that over 600 million users are actively using the app on a monthly basis. This is something to seriously consider if you are a business owner or wish to start your own brand. So, let’s get started with the basics.

What is an Engagement Group?

An Instagram engagement group is a group of people in a chat room that post their content and share engagement with each other. Rules differ for each group, but the general concept lies the same. However, there are typically two types of groups; a ‘like’ group and a ‘like and comment’ group. The ‘like’ group shares only likes and the ‘like and comment’ groups shares both likes and comments with each other. Pretty straight forward stuff.

Why use Engagement Groups?

Pretty good question. What’s the point in joining such groups? Well, according to the changes in Instagram’s new algorithm it suggests that posts which receive high engagements (such as like and comments) is likely to be ranked higher on your followers new’s feed and possibly get a mention on the explore page of a few people which makes a massive difference to your overall account in-terms of the impressions, reach and overall user engagement that essentially boosts your follower count which is the main goal here.

Users have found that posting content roughly an hour before you place your name in the engagement groups opens the window to the chance of getting a viral post. This is when you are either featured on the explore page or the top user in a certain hashtag.

Here is an example showing the benefits of using engagement groups

It’s the same post that has been published twice. One is without the use of engagement groups and the other one is with the engagement group. Notice the big difference.

Without Engagement Groups
With the use of Engagement Groups
Statistics – With Engagement Groups

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I myself am quite new to Instagram and have roughly 3k followers (nouveau.tycoon), but the difference shown is of an account thrice the size of mine, so it definitely works.

(Blooper) You may see that the username is different on the third picture, this is because of an eager preparation of another blog post that I am working on, which is creating another account from scratch and using a reliable engagement group to boost it as much as possible and essentially documenting the process for you guys. So stay tuned!

How do I Join these ‘Engagement Groups’?

Engagement groups are typically hosted on an app called ‘Telegram’, but you create a few of your own on the Instagram direct message section by creating a group chat and adding certain accounts in to start.

To join an existing engagement group you would either need to be invited by a person or have a referral link that allows you to join it. Or simply find an account in your niche that has really high engagement and ask if they are in one and if they can let you join it. Some are private, others are public; some are even specific to page niches it all depends on the group hoster. You will find that some are actually paid groups and others are free, HOWEVER, there is a massive difference between the two.

Free groups have a lot of people who join and usually end up leaching of others by posting their content and not returning the favour to others. This usually depends on the admin managing the group but I have found that paid groups usually have active admins who regulate and enforce strict rules upon anyone who tries to abuse it. And do be aware of scammers who pose as active groups, because it is becoming really common these days more often to newcomers who are easily targeted so please do your research before you decide to invest into engagement groups.

Free engagement groups can be found all over the internet, a common method is to search through various web articles to find the perfect one in a million group which is highly unlikely. I would recommend you contact pages in similar niches that have a high engagement on their posts. (in terms of their like and comments received), this is usually a good indicator that they are in one and just simply ask politely to join.

However, if your anything like me and do not particularly want to waste any time searching for one you can join a paid engagement group that I am a member of and can personally vouch for. If you’re interested I will leave a link below this.

I hope the article clears up any questions you may have about engagement groups on Instagram. However, if there are any areas you are still unsure about, please do leave a comment below.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Free Engagement Group (Telegram)

We have created our own free engagement group on the app ‘Telegram’, click this link to be re-directed to the app. If there any problems when joining, please send us an e-mail at: contact@nouveautycoon.com and we will manually add you to the group.

(Telegram App Link: JOIN HERE!)

[Alternatively, you can e-mail us your instagram page and we can add you to our Instagram direct message engagement group, if your unable to download Telegram.]

Paid Engagement Group (CLICK HERE!)

If you would like to join the paid engagement group i mentioned please click here to be re-directed to their official page!

(Note: This is a referral link so, if you do decide to purchase the group through this link, I will earn a commission from it.)

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‘Managing Oneself’ – Peter F. Drucker

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Book Review – ‘Managing Oneself’, Peter F. Drucker

In this day and age, we can be anything we want, achieve anything we put our minds to, the world is full of unprecedented opportunities, but why do we sometimes feel that we’re left behind and everyone around us is moving forward. Believe it or not, it all comes down to a few questions; statements that you can ask yourself. I strongly recommend this book and should definitely be in your basket the next time you shop. You can get a copy here!

I’ll start the review by quoting the blurb on the back of the book:

“In Managing Oneself, Peter Drucker explains how to create your career path by knowing when to seize opportunities and when to change course. This influential Harvard Business Review article helps you unlock your full potential by discovering your strengths, recognising how you best work with others, and identifying the work environments that are right for you.”

Drucker splits the book into chapter-like sub-headings in the form of questions and small statements. These are my summaries for each sub-heading/statement.

What Are My Strengths?

Drucker starts by stating that people are not often aware of their strengths, and most cases if they were, they are usually wrong. Throughout history, where people had little need to know their strengths which then would be used to progress in to certain careers or professions, did not matter as much, because a person would be born into a position and a line of work, for example, the peasants son, would also be a peasant; the artisan’s daughter would be an artisan’s wife and so on. However, in a modern age, people have a choice, to pursue any profession they choose. But need to know their strengths in order to know where they belong and a way to discover such strengths is through feedback analysis.

To do feedback analysis, you have to simply write down what you expect will happen, whenever you make a key decision or take a key action. Nine or Twelve months later, compare the actual results to your expectations. Drucker explains that after doing this, the three important actions to take are i) Concentrate on your strengths. ii) Work on improving these strengths. iii) Overcoming intellectual arrogance. It will ultimately give you an idea of what you should be doing and what to avoid in your life, in a relatively short period.

How Do I Perform?

Drucker states that there are very few people who know how to get things done and work in ways that are not their ways, which guarantees non-performance. Drucker questions the reader to ask themselves the following: “Am I a reader or listener? Using John Kennedy and Winston Churchill as examples. To know how you perform, you need to understand how you work best.

(Do you process information better by reading it, or by hearing others discuss it?)
(Do you perform best while making decisions or from advising on other matters?)
(Do you see the results from working alone or in a team?)

All of these questions, once answered properly will indeed help you get the results you are looking for, whilst increasing performance.

What Are My Values?

To be able to manage yourself, you have to ask, what are my values? Try thinking about what is important to you. Living a worthy, ethical life? You must make sure that your job responsibilities and your organization are well aligned with your values. Drucker states that values are at the core of why you are doing a certain job. He uses the anecdote in his own life of where his strengths and the way he performs clashed with his values. He was an Investment Banker in London in the 1930s and was very successful in the profession. However, says, “People, I realized, were what I valued and I saw no point being the richest man in the cemetery”. He ends the chapter with a closing sentence, “Values, in other words, are and should be the ultimate test”.

Where Do I Belong?

A small number of people know very early where they belong and some are lucky to have a clear talent in attributes such as mathematicians, musicians, and cooks directing them straight into a certain career or profession, however, most people do not know where they belong. To know where you belong, you need to consider your strengths and ideal work style. Once you find the perfect fit you will transform from an acceptable employee to a top performer. Drucker says “Knowing where one belongs can transform an ordinary person — hard working and competent but otherwise mediocre — into an outstanding performer.”

What Should I Contribute?

Throughout history, companies have told their workers/employees, what their contributions should be. Today is a lot different, you have choices. More and more people are deciding for themselves what they should do or whether or not they should contribute. But with choices comes responsibility. Deciding what to do and where to focus is a deep skill that we all can improve. Deciding where to focus may well be the most important skill that can be learned and improved with persistence and effort.

Responsibility and Relationships

Very few people work well by themselves and actually achieve results by themselves. This is one of the most important factors to success in a profession and will be the ability to work and communicate effectively with other people. Drucker professes there are two points to understand: i) Others are essentially the same. ii) Taking responsibility for communicating with others. To work effectively with others or in a team, you must understand how they perform, their strengths and their values.

The Second Half of Your Life

For the final chapter, Drucker discusses how in the past, with labour-like jobs such as mill, railroad workers, there was an understanding that it was a job that lasted for 40 years and if you had made it past that point, you would be quite happy to spend the rest of your life doing nothing. However, modern knowledge-based jobs often lead to boredom and “the mid-life crisis”. At around 45 years where boredom supervenes after most business executives have reached the peak in their career. Making the preparation of for, and managing, a ‘second career’ is imperative.

Drucker states the three methods of creating your ‘second career’, i) Actually creating one. He uses an example of mid-level manager leaving a corporation to attend law school and become a small-town attorney. ii) Developing a parallel job. This occurs when the individual reaches the peak in their career and decides to work either part-time or as a consultant. iii) Social entrepreneurship. This route is often pursued by professionals who have achieved very high levels of success in their career and chooses to spend their time on a non-profit organisation.

With modern opportunity comes responsibility, says Drucker. Learning how to manage ourselves is as important a skill and process as there is, no matter where we go or what we do, our selves will always be with us.

Drucker summarises the book perfectly. “Knowledge workers outlive organisations and they are mobile. The need to manage oneself is therefore creating a revolution in human affairs”.

You can grab yourself a copy of the book – Managing Oneself ‘Peter F. Drucker’ from Amazon UK here.
NOTE:(This is an affiliate link, so i will earn a commission if you purchase through the link.)

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Managing Yourself as an Entrepreneur

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Self-management is a becoming a rare but required skill, especially in this new information economy, and has often become a setback for many business owners and entrepreneurs, I myself had fallen prey to this many times. Let’s get started by defining what it is, ‘self-management is the management of or by oneself; the taking of responsibility for one’s own behaviour and well-being’.

We all think we manage our time well, but do we really? I’m sure there had been a time, where you needed to do something, whether it was to learn a new skill, a new language or even starting a project that you had in mind, but just didn’t get around to doing it. To make matters even tougher it’s not only about time management or completing tasks on time, it’s also about discovering your strengths, recognising how you best work with others and identifying environments that are just right for you.

So, how do you actually manage yourself effectively, not just in the sense of creating a schedule or a routine and sticking to it, although these practical tips are helpful, their effectiveness depends greatly on us to perform consistently. As Aristotle once said: “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit. Consistently completing a large task broken down into small pieces that are completed throughout a period of time can go a long way.

However, I would like to briefly move on to a book I recently found called ‘Managing Oneself’ written by Peter F. Drucker, who explains in great detail on cultivating a deep understanding of yourself by identifying your most valuable strengths and most dangerous weaknesses. He strongly believed when you operate with a combination of your strengths and self-knowledge could you achieve true and lasting excellence.

Drucker splits the book into small chapter-like subheadings in the form of questions and small statements:

  • What are my Strengths?
  • How do I Perform?
  • What are my Values?
  • Where do I Belong?
  • What should I Contribute?
  • Responsibility for Relationships
  • The Second half of your life

If you’re a person that knows you are slacking and are able to accomplish so much more? I recommend you give this book a shot. And do not be fooled by the 72 page book, it’s definitely one that packs a punch and puts things in perspective quite easily.

You can grab yourself a copy of the book – Managing Oneself ‘Peter F. Drucker’ from Amazon UK here.
NOTE:(This is an affiliate link, so i will earn a commission if you purchase through the link.)

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