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Lessons learnt over the past decade?

As we are now walking the very early steps of the new Decade, it can be a great time to spend a bit of time reflecting on what we learnt from the last 10 years, that will help make the next 10 years even better. Here are the 5 biggest lessons I learnt.

  1. Markets Recover – In 2010, we were all still very shaken from the GFC. From October 2007 through until March 2009, global stock markets were pretty much just a sea of red figures. When we entered 2010, we had a bit of hope that it was all over and thankfully it was and the decade that followed showed that the overall market WILL recover.
    LESSONS – Have an Investment Strategy that you will stick with through the Good times and the BAD. Importantly, making sure that your Investment Strategy covers off on the major points of Diversification and Asset Allocation.
  2. Economic and Political forecasting “Professionals” do an incredibly poor job at being right. For the last 4 to 5 years, most economic forecasts have been predicting market downturns above 10%. Markets have rallied massively. If you had listened to these reports and acted on them, you would have been cashing out, and waiting to ‘buy in at the right time’.  As a result, you would have missed on major increases in your portfolio.
    On the political front, how many people predicted Trump, Morrison, Brexit and a Boris? Not many.
    LESSONS – A broken clock is correct twice a day and that is about as accurate as most economic and political forecasters’ opinions. The Academic world have proven that these forecasters are terrible and therefore you are best off taking their advice with a grain of salt.
  3. Having targets to hit. Goal setting is seriously one of the most important parts of life. Like the old saying goes: “If you aim at nothing, you will hit it!”. It is crucial in all parts of life to have goals if want to get progress.
    LESSONS – This is very much a personal one of mine and has multiple lessons within. I joined Armcrest 1st November 2010 and my goal was to grow my own client base of Gen X & Y clients and purchase the existing business clients off my father over a 7-year timeframe. Late in 2015, we got hit with a large unexpected change when it was announced that we needed to find a new licensee to work through. We had several other major changes occur and without going into the boring details the true lessons are:
    Set a Goal, 2. Track your progress, 3. Reset Goals as a result of progress (either ahead or behind schedule), 4. Tick them off along the way, 5. Repeat the process constantly.
    That 7 Year goal has not been met as yet, but within the next few months it will be. Slightly behind schedule, but it will get there.
    BIGGEST LESSON – Not everything will go to plan. Therefore, the constant process of Tracking/Resetting is essential.
  4. Access to Resources and Back-Up Plans are incredibly important in all areas of life, especially when tragic events unfold. Clearly the end of 2019 was marred by the horrific bushfires in Australia. Hearing the stories of housing being burnt to the ground and not being insured, makes everyone feel sick to their stomach. We had similar scenarios with the Brisbane floods earlier in the decade. As I am sure you all experienced, we would have also seen family/friends hit with unexpected health events and in some cases, unfortunately, pass away. Having the back-up plans for when something goes wrong is crucial.
    LESSONS – Don’t leave things up to chance. Get you, your family and your important items (house/car etc) insured. Money isn’t important until something goes wrong, and then it becomes EXTREMELY handy. If you can’t afford the insurance or can’t get yourself/house/car insured, then you need to take even more steps to avoid having disastrous outcomes. “Safety Nets” are a very good place to land compared to the alternatives.
  5. Constant Learning and Growth. Personally, this is the biggest one for me. The desire to always be looking at ways to improve personally and professionally. I truly believe the more we learn the more we realise that we can’t know everything and therefore become more open to asking for help from friends, family or employing a professional in that area. LESSONS – Be open to Coaching and Mentoring. We are so accepting of having coaches in the sporting arena and Mentors/Adviser in the Business world. Bringing this desire for Learning and Growth into all aspects of life will see you make huge leaps forward.

I would love to hear your thoughts on what your best lessons from the last decade.

 

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