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Saturday, February 23, 2013

Learning From Real Millionaires...

I had the opportunity recently to attend a conference where the majority of the attendants were field supervisors in a construction related industry. As a project manager I send these guys out to my different projects and they are basically in charge of getting the work done.

The reason I bring this up is because their job would not be the first one to come to your head if I asked you to mention a high-paying profession.

The interesting part is that these individuals mostly have a High School diploma only, they live in rural parts of the country like Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana, they mostly drive trucks (American of course), many of them consider themselves "rednecks" and...they are millionaires!

That's right. You would never guess it by looking at them because typically the image of a millionaire that is presented to you and me is something like this:

Yet most of these guys look like this:

Let me give you an example of what these millionaires are like.

I was chatting with the wife of one of the most successful and well paid individuals in this group. This person makes a multiple six-figure annual income. In the conversation one of the other ladies asks her where she got her nails done.

Since we were staying at a fancy resort I assumed she had gone to the spa located at the resort where we were in. Instead she explained how she had found a inexpensive manicure salon just a couple of miles outside of the resort and had gone there…


Here is one person that can easily afford a $100 manicure at the fancy resort spa, instead she opts for the regular (and less costly) manicure at a regular nail salon.

Herein lies the lessons I observe time and again from real millionaires and wealthy people in contrast to the people that LOOK like they are millionaires but really aren't:

  • They feel no need whatsoever to show you and me that they are wealthy.
  • They don't wear a Rolex, they don't dress from Armani, their wives don't wear Jimmy Choo shoes or buy $500 purses. Instead they build their own houses, put their kids through college paying cash and are perfectly fine whether they stay at a fancy resort or the local La Quinta hotel. Yet there are so many people out there with only a fraction of the money these guys have yet spend so much more than they do!
  • They work hard! Do you know what one of these guys does when he is not working for my company? He grows sweet potatoes...himself...in the South...in the summer heat! And makes another bundle of money doing that!
  • Do you know how they make their money? By doing tough manual labor for 12 hours a day, seven days per week in less than pleasant job sites.
  • They live simple lives. No country clubs, society dinners or yacht clubs. At best you will find some of them at their local golf course.
  • They buy "toys" (boats, cars, motorcyles, etc.) the difference being that they buy them cash while most people buy the same "toys" with debt.
  • Their net worth is significantly higher than those of their friends and neighbors yet you would not be able to tell just by casually knowing them.
I have seen first hand the work these guys do and how long it has taken them to get where they are. I can assure you this is not work I would like to do and I am glad these guys get well compensated for what they do.

So the next time you think that to be wealthy you have to look and live the part, think again!

QUESTION: If you have known someone that is wealthy, how are they different from what you thought a wealthy person would be?

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