Money Management 101 for Single Parents Going it Alone

1. Determine What You Owe

As the head of the household, it’s up to you to make sure that your entire family’s needs are being met. In order to do that, you need to be extremely diligent when it comes to money management basics. This is not something that will happen by accident. Instead, you must plan for it and work toward it.

The first step is to set up your “office.” Gather all of your bills, a calculator, a pencil, and your checkbook.

I would also recommend that you grab an old binder that you can use to keep track of your financial data and a shoebox for storing paid bills.

Now you’re ready to begin:

  • Go through all of your bills, and pay anything that is due within the next week.
  • If you have bills coming due that you cannot pay, notify the company and ask them to set up a payment plan with you.
  • Print a copy of the chart “Paying Down My Debts” or make your own.
  • On the chart, list all of your debts, including any car loans, student loans, and credit card debt.
  • In addition, list the total balance left to be paid on all of these debts, and the percentage rate you are paying.
  • For now, leave the fourth column of the chart blank, and store it in your “Financial Data” binder.

    149272148-56a871795f9b58b7d0f29f00

2. Eliminate Joint Debt

Before we create a plan for paying down your debt, it’s important to consider some special circumstances that may apply to you as a single parent. I asked LaToya Irby, Credit/Debt Management Expert, to share her expertise on handling joint debt:

Wolf: Let’s say a single mom still shares a credit card with her ex. What should she do?

Irby: Ideally, she would want her ex to transfer his portion of any joint balances onto his own credit card. That way, everyone is paying for their own debt.

Wolf: What about leaving both names on the account, and agreeing to pay part of the amount due? Is that ever advisable?

Irby: No. If you’ve made an agreement with your ex to split the debt payments on accounts that include your name, and your ex-misses a payment, it’s going to hurt your credit. If the ex-fails to pay altogether, the creditors and collectors will come after you. Not even a divorce decree can change the terms of a joint credit card agreement. In the credit card issuer’s eyes, you’re just as much responsible for post-divorce accounts as before.

Wolf: What about situations when a couple’s divorce decree mandates that one individual must pay off the joint credit card debt, but that person fails to do it?

Irby: You can always file contempt of court papers against him/her, but in the meantime, your credit score suffers. So I suggest paying off the debt to save your credit. If you can’t afford to pay the debt, at least make minimum payments to keep a positive payment history on your credit report.

Wolf: What about other accounts, such as utilities and cell phones?

Irby: The safest thing to do, if you have a service in your ex’s name, is to turn off the account and reestablish service in your name.

 

172075308-56a871795f9b58b7d0f29f03

3. Find Money to Pay Down Debt

Another thing we have to do before creating a plan to pay down your existing debt is to find money in your budget each month. To assist in this step, I contacted Erin Huffstetler, Frugal Living Expert.

Wolf: How much money do you think the average person can uncover just by being more intentional about spending and budgeting?

Huffstetler: The average person could easily uncover an extra $250 a month—and probably much more.

Wolf: What are the top 5 areas that you think people should look to first when they’re trying to cut their expenses?

Huffstetler:

  • Food spending (both groceries and eating out)
  • TV-related expenses (cable/satellite services, certainly; but also movie subscriptions and rentals)
  • Phone services (particularly extras like call waiting, caller id, long distance, and cell phones)
  • Insurance premiums
  • Miscellaneous spending (all those small amounts spent on coffee, vending machine snacks, and other indulgences)

Wolf: How can single parents, specifically, stretch their child support dollars and reduce child-related expenses?

Huffstetler: For single parents looking to stretch their child support dollars, creativity is the key. Look to children’s consignment shops and thrift stores to buy your kids’ clothes instead of department stores; sign them up for Parks and Rec-run activities instead of privately-run activities (which will always cost more); and don’t feel like you have to make up for being a single parent by buying them extra things—it’s you they need, not stuff.

 

471002109-56a8717a3df78cf7729e1bd7

4. Pay Off Your Debt

The next step is creating a schedule for paying down your debt:

  1. Pay off the debts that charge you the highest interest first.Bob Hammond, author of Life Without Debt, recommends that you pay off the debts that are charging you the highest interest first since borrowing from those creditors is costing you the most money. “Concentrate on paying off the high-cost debts as soon as possible,” Hammond advises. LaToya Irby, Credit/Debt Management Expert, agrees. “Highest interest rate debts cost the most money, especially when those debts have high balances. So you’ll save money on interest charges when you pay off those high-interest rate debts first.”However, there are exceptions to this general rule. Irby notes, “If you’re likely to get discouraged because it’s taking a long time to pay off that high-interest rate debt, you can start with the lowest balance debt. Getting some small debts paid off will motivate you to keep going.”
  2. Pay more than the minimum payment. Aim for paying more than the suggested minimum payment, in order to pay off your debts as quickly as possible.Miriam Caldwell, Money in Your 20’s Expert, shares this advice:
    • Choose one debt to focus on.
    • Increase your payment on that debt by as much as you can.
    • Once you have paid off that debt, move all that you are paying on it to the next debt you want to pay off.
    • You’ll be surprised at how quickly you can get out of debt with this plan!
  3. Meanwhile, continue to pay the minimum balance due on all of your other debts.Record what you intend to pay toward each debt on the debt chart you made in Step 1.

 

184644720-56a8717b5f9b58b7d0f29f06

5. Budget Your Monthly Expenses

Now that you know where you stand financially, and you’ve created a plan for paying down your debts, it’s time to make sure that you’re making any other necessary adjustments so that you can keep up with your plan. And this means creating a budget.

I know this can be intimidating, but I’m going to make a suggestion for you: Sign up for Mint.com. It’s a free financial software program available on the Internet, and it will basically do your budgeting for you. It will create a visual pie chart showing how much you’re spending each month on housing, gas, food, entertainment, and more. This way, if it turns out that you’re spending a lot more on food than you really should, you can begin to make the necessary adjustments to get your spending under control.

If you would prefer to create your budget the traditional way, allotting a certain amount of money to each spending category, I’ve created an online budget calculator you can use, which includes categories for child support and other details specific to your life as a single parent.

Finally, in taking a look at where your money really goes each month, it’s important to know approximately how much money you “should” be spending in each category. Generally speaking, your net spendable income (after taxes) should be allocated as follows*:

  • Housing: 30%
  • Food: 12%
  • Auto: 14%
  • Insurance: 5%
  • Debt: 5%
  • Entertainment: 7%
  • Clothing: 6%
  • Savings: 5%
  • Medical/Dental: 4%
  • Miscellaneous: 7%
  • Child Care: 5%
  • Investments: 5%

 

169260106-56a8717c3df78cf7729e1bda

6. Set Financial Goals

Now that you’ve worked out a plan to pay down your debt, and you’ve created a budget, it’s time to determine your needs moving forward.

Specifically, as a single parent, you need to ask yourself some questions, such as:

  • Do you need to file for child support?
  • Do you need to get a higher-paying job?
  • Is it time to think about going back to school?
  • Do you need to consider moving into a home/rental that would reduce your overall monthly payments?
  • Are there alternatives, such as taking on another job or splitting expenses with another single parent family, that you need to consider at this point?

One of the things that I want you to know is that the ball is in your court. You determine where this goes from here on out. But unfortunately, you can’t do that if you’re ignoring your financial health, right?

So the fact that you’ve come this far in the process of getting a handle on your finances tells me that you’re determined to make the changes you need to make in order to provide for your family’s future.

So go ahead and ask yourself these questions. So much of single parenting is learning to roll with the punches and be creative in the face of adversity. If, indeed, you need to make some pretty major changes, now is the time to do it. Don’t incur any more debt where you are. Be resourceful, follow through, and do what you need to do to turn your financial situation around.

172167002-56a8717d5f9b58b7d0f29f09

7. Increase Your Net Worth

The next step is to determine your net worth and begin adding to it.

Determine Your Net Worth:

Your net worth is what you own minus what you owe. Programs such as Mint.com, Quicken, and Microsoft Money will calculate your net worth for you, automatically.

You can also determine your net worth simply by adding up all that you own, including all of your investments, the equity you may have paid into your home, the value of your car, and any other assets you possess; and subtracting what you owe in remaining debts.

Set Up a Savings Account:

Once you know where you stand, you’ll be ready to set up a savings account. You can do this through your regular bank, or begin investing in a mutual fund that pays interest.

Even if you can only afford to set aside $25 or $50 per month, it will begin to add up.

Before you know it, you’ll have an emergency savings plan in place, to protect you in the event that your car breaks down, or your home needs a major repair.

In addition, this regular savings will help you increase your net worth over time.

176643490-56a8717e5f9b58b7d0f29f0c

8. Become Even More Frugal

Unfortunately, all of the work you’ve already done in steps 1-7 will have little lasting value if you don’t change your attitude toward money. Now is the time to become even more frugal and learn to live within your means.

Practice Discipline:

Stop imagining that more money is going to pour in tomorrow—through finally collecting on unpaid child support, winning the lottery, or getting a promotion. If those things happen, great! You’ll be even better off. But living as if they’re going to happen is causing you to spend money you don’t have.

Instead, force yourself to make purchases with cash only. Do not continue to pay outrageous interest payments toward credit cards for purchases you don’t absolutely need. You can get by without that new furniture, right? What else could you skip, in the interest of spending only what you have right now in the bank?

Try These Ideas:

  • Check Freecycle before you make another major purchase. Someone else may be giving away the very thing you’d like to buy!
  • When you’re getting ready to buy something specific, look for it on eBay first. I buy a lot of my clothes, new-with-tags, through online auctions!
  • Forget trying to keep up with “The Jones’s.” You already know your value; don’t get caught up trying to “prove” your worth to others by having “just the right” house, car, or appearance.
  • Do not use shopping, ever, to appease your emotions.
  • Finally, when you do go to make a big purchase, step back and give yourself a few days–or even a week–to think about it. There’s no reason to suffer through buyer’s remorse and try to justify to yourself purchases that you really can’t afford. Think it over carefully and make those purchases, when necessary, with cash.

483612623-56a8717f3df78cf7729e1be0

9. Schedule Your Own Weekly Financial Check-In

Grab your calendar and schedule a weekly financial update meeting with yourself. This is an extremely important step in managing your personal finances, and it’s one that you need to continue each and every week. During your “meeting” time:

  • Pay any bills that are due.
  • If your bank statement has arrived, take the time to balance your checkbook.
  • Check the balances of your checking and savings accounts.
  • Update your debt list to incorporate any recent payments.
  • This is also a good time to write out your grocery shopping list and check what’s on sale at your local grocery store this week (either using the store’s Web site or the sales circular that comes in the newspaper).
  • Finally, also make note of any upcoming expenses you need to anticipate and plan for.

An attitude of gratitude and finances.

 

 

References:
Irby, LaToya. Email interview. 24 Oct. 2008, 
Huffstetler, Erin. Email interview. 24 Oct. 2008. 
Sources:
Caldwell, Miriam. Email interview. 27 Oct. 2008, Hammond, Bob. “Debt Free Key: 10 Steps for Coping With Credit Problems.” Life Without Debt. Franklin Lakes, NJ: Career Press, 1995. 31-32, Irby, LaToya. Email interview. 24 Oct. 2008. 
“Spending Plan Online Calculator.” Crown Financial Ministries. 11 Oct. 2008.

Written By: Jennifer Wolf

Source: thebalance

 

 

 

Nine Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs

Have you ever thought about striking out on your own? After all, being your own boss can be an exciting prospect. However, owning a business isn’t for everyone. To be a successful entrepreneur, you must have — or develop — certain personality traits. Here are nine characteristics you should ideally possess to start and run your own business:

1. Motivation

Entrepreneurs are enthusiastic, optimistic and future-oriented. They believe they’ll be successful and are willing to risk their resources in pursuit of profit. They have high energy levels and are sometimes impatient. They are always thinking about their business and how to increase their market share. Are you self-motivated enough to do this, and can you stay motivated for extended periods of time? Can you bounce back in the face of challenges?

2. Creativity and Persuasiveness

Successful entrepreneurs have the creative capacity to recognize and pursue opportunities. They possess strong selling skills and are both persuasive and persistent. Are you willing to promote your business tirelessly and look for new ways to get the word out about your product or service?

3. Versatility 

Company workers can usually rely on a staff or colleagues to provide service or support. As an entrepreneur, you’ll typically start out as a “solopreneur,” meaning you will be on your own for a while. You may not have the luxury of hiring a support staff initially. Therefore, you will end up wearing several different hats, including secretary, bookkeeper and so on. You need to be mentally prepared to take on all these tasks at the beginning. Can you do that?

4. Superb Business Skills 

Entrepreneurs are naturally capable of setting up the internal systems, procedures and processes necessary to operate a business. They are focused on cash flow, sales and revenue at all times. Successful entrepreneurs rely on their business skills, know-how and contacts. Evaluate your current talents and professional network. Will your skills, contacts and experience readily transfer to the business idea you want to pursue?

5. Risk Tolerance

Launching any entrepreneurial venture is risky. Are you willing to assume that risk? You can reduce your risk by thoroughly researching your business concept, industry and market. You can also test your concept on a small scale. Can you get a letter of intent from prospective customers to purchase? If so, do you think customers would actually go through with their transaction?

6. Drive 

As an entrepreneur, you are in the driver’s seat, so you must be proactive in your approaches to everything. Are you a doer — someone willing to take the reins — or would you rather someone else do things for you?

7. Vision

One of your responsibilities as founder and head of your company is deciding where your business should go. That requires vision. Without it, your boat will be lost at sea. Are you the type of person who looks ahead and can see the big picture?

8. Flexibility and Open-Mindedness

While entrepreneurs need a steadfast vision and direction, they will face a lot of unknowns. You will need to be ready to tweak any initial plans and strategies. New and better ways of doing things may come along as well. Can you be open-minded and flexible in the face of change?

9. Decisiveness

As an entrepreneur, you won’t have room for procrastination or indecision. Not only will these traits stall progress, but they can also cause you to miss crucial opportunities that could move you toward success. Can you make decisions quickly and seize the moment?

 

 

 

Written By: Ruchira Agrawal
Source: Monster

14 Things Ridiculously Successful People Do Every Day

Having close access to ultra-successful people can yield some pretty incredible information about who they really are, what makes them tick, and, most importantly, what makes them so successful and productive.

“Whenever you see a successful person, you only see the public glories, never the private sacrifices to reach them.” – Vaibhav Shah

Kevin Kruse is one such person. He recently interviewed over 200 ultra-successful people, including 7 billionaires, 13 Olympians, and a host of accomplished entrepreneurs. One of his most revealing sources of information came from their answers to a simple open-ended question:

“What is your number one secret to productivity?”

In analyzing their responses, Kruse coded the answers to yield some fascinating suggestions. What follows are some of my favorites from Kevin’s findings.

1. They focus on minutes, not hours. Most people default to hour and half-hour blocks on their calendar; highly successful people know that there are 1,440 minutes in every day and that there is nothing more valuable than time. Money can be lost and made again, but time spent can never be reclaimed. As legendary Olympic gymnast Shannon Miller told Kevin, “To this day, I keep a schedule that is almost minute by minute.” You must master your minutes to master your life.

2. They focus on only one thing. Ultra-productive people know what their “Most Important Task” is and work on it for one to two hours each morning, without interruptions. What task will have the biggest impact on reaching your goals? What accomplishment will get you promoted at work? That’s what you should dedicate your mornings to every day.

3. They don’t use to-do lists. Throw away your to-do list; instead schedule everything on your calendar. It turns out that only 41% of items on to-do lists ever get done. All those undone items lead to stress and insomnia because of the Zeigarnik effect, which, in essence, means that uncompleted tasks will stay on your mind until you finish them. Highly productive people put everything on their calendar and then work and live by that calendar.

4. They beat procrastination with time travel. Your future self can’t be trusted. That’s because we are time inconsistent. We buy veggies today because we think we’ll eat healthy salads all week; then we throw out green rotting mush in the future. Successful people figure out what they can do now to make certain their future selves will do the right thing. Anticipate how you will self-sabotage in the future, and come up with a solution today to defeat your future self.

5. They make it home for dinner. Kevin first learned this one from Intel’s Andy Grove, who said, “There is always more to be done, more that should be done, always more than can be done.” Highly successful people know what they value in life. Yes, work, but also what else they value. There is no right answer, but for many, these other values include family time, exercise, and giving back. They consciously allocate their 1,440 minutes a day to each area they value (i.e., they put them on their calendar), and then they stick to that schedule.

6. They use a notebook. Richard Branson has said on more than one occasion that he wouldn’t have been able to build Virgin without a simple notebook, which he takes with him wherever he goes. In one interview, Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis said, “Always carry a notebook. Write everything down. That is a million dollar lesson they don’t teach you in business school!” Ultra-productive people free their minds by writing everything down as the thoughts come to them.

7. They process e-mails only a few times a day. Ultra-productive people don’t “check” their e-mail throughout the day. They don’t respond to each vibration or ding to see who has intruded into their inbox. Instead, like everything else, they schedule time to process their e-mails quickly and efficiently. For some, that’s only once a day; for others, it’s morning, noon, and night.

8. They avoid meetings at all costs. When Kevin asked Mark Cuban to give his best productivity advice, he quickly responded, “Never take meetings unless someone is writing a check.” Meetings are notorious time killers. They start late, have the wrong people in them, meander around their topics, and run long. You should get out of meetings whenever you can and hold fewer of them yourself. If you do run a meeting, keep it short and to the point.

9. They say “no” to almost everything. Billionaire Warren Buffet once said, “The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say ‘no’ to almost everything.” And James Altucher colorfully gave Kevin this tip: “If something is not a ‘Hell Yeah!’ then it’s a no.” Remember, you only have 1,440 minutes in a day. Don’t give them away easily.

10. They follow the 80/20 rule. Known as the Pareto Principle, in most cases, 80% of results come from only 20% of activities. Ultra-productive people know which activities drive the greatest results. Focus on those and ignore the rest.

11. They delegate almost everything. Ultra-productive people don’t ask, “How can I do this task?” Instead, they ask, “How can this task get done?” They take the I out of it as much as possible. Ultra-productive people don’t have control issues, and they are not micro-managers. In many cases, good enough is, well, good enough.

12. They touch things only once. How many times have you opened a piece of regular mail–a bill perhaps–and then put it down, only to deal with it again later? How often do you read an e-mail and then close it and leave it in your inbox to deal with later? Highly successful people try to “touch it once.” If it takes less than five or ten minutes–whatever it is–they deal with it right then and there. It reduces stress, since it won’t be in the back of their minds, and it is more efficient, since they won’t have to re-read or re-evaluate the item again in the future.

13. They practice a consistent morning routine. Kevin’s single greatest surprise while interviewing over 200 highly successful people was how many of them wanted to share their morning ritual with him. While he heard about a wide variety of habits, most nurtured their bodies in the morning with water, a healthy breakfast, and light exercise, and they nurtured their minds with meditation or prayer, inspirational reading, or journaling.

14. Energy is everything. You can’t make more minutes in the day, but you can increase your energy to increase your attention, focus, and productivity. Highly successful people don’t skip meals, sleep, or breaks in the pursuit of more, more, more. Instead, they view food as fuel, sleep as recovery, and breaks as opportunities to recharge in order to get even more done.

Bringing It All Together

You might not be an entrepreneur, an Olympian, or a billionaire (or even want to be), but their secrets just might help you to get more done in less time and assist you to stop feeling so overworked and overwhelmed.

 

 

Written By: Travis Bradberry
Source: Inc.

7 Personal Finance Tips From Warren Buffett

Warren Buffett is generally considered to be the best long-term investor of all time, so it’s no wonder many people like to listen closely to Buffett’s words of wisdom, in order to apply them to their own lives. With that in mind, here are seven of the best personal finance lessons I’ve learned from Warren Buffett over the years.

sitting-in-the-shade_large

1. “Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago”

The lesson here is to be a forward thinker when it comes to personal finance, whether you’re talking about investing, saving, or spending. When you’re deciding whether to put some more money aside for emergencies, think of a financial emergency actually happening and how much easier your life will be if you have enough money set aside.

Similarly, few people get rich quick by investing, and most people who try end up going broke. The most certain path to wealth (and the one Buffett took) is to build your portfolio one step at a time, and keep your focus on the long run.

money-growing_large

2. “Only buy something that you’d be perfectly happy to hold if the market shut down for 10 years”

In addition to this, one of my all-time favorite Warren Buffett quotes is “our favorite holding period is forever,” which is also one of the most misunderstood things he says. The point isn’t that Buffett only invests in stocks he’s going to buy and forget about — after all, Buffett’s company Berkshire Hathaway sells stocks regularly, and for a variety of reasons. Rather, what Buffett is saying is to invest in stable, established businesses that have durable competitive advantages. That is, approach your investments with the long term in mind, but keep an eye on them to make sure your original reasons for buying still apply.

paying-cash_large

3. “Price is what you pay; value is what you get”

When you’re buying an investment (or anything else for that matter), the price you pay and the value you receive are often two very different things. In other words, you should buy a stock if you believe its share price is less than the intrinsic value of the business — not simply because you think the price is low.

For example, if a market correction hit tomorrow and a certain stock were to fall by 10% along with the overall market, would the business inherently be worth 10% less than it is today? Probably not. Similarly, if a stock rose rapidly, it wouldn’t necessarily mean that the value of the underlying business had risen as well. Be sure you consider value and price separately when making investing decisions.

money-in-a-bag_large

4. “Cash … is to a business as oxygen is to an individual: never thought about when it is present, the only thing in mind when it is absent”

One of the reasons Berkshire Hathaway not only survives recessions and crashes, but tends to come out of them even better than it went in, is that Warren Buffett understands the value of keeping an “emergency fund.” In fact, when the market was crashing in 2008, Berkshire had enough cash on hand to make several lucrative investments, such as its purchase of Goldman Sachs warrants.

Granted, Berkshire Hathaway’s rainy-day fund is probably a bit bigger than yours; Buffett insists on keeping a minimum of $20 billion in cash at all times, and the current total is around $85 billion. However, the same applies to your own financial health. If you have a decent stockpile of cash on the sidelines, you’ll be much better equipped to deal with whatever financial challenges and opportunities life throws at you.

couple-planning-investments_large

5. “Risk comes from not knowing what you’re doing”

In Buffett’s mind, one of the best investments you can make is in yourself and the knowledge you have. This is why Buffett spends hours of every day reading, and has done so for most of his life. The better educated you are on a topic, whether it’s investing or anything else, the better equipped you’ll be to make wise decisions and avoid unnecessary risks. As Buffett’s partner Charlie Munger has advised: “Go to bed smarter than when you woke up.”

stock-traders-looking-at-screens_large

6. Most people should avoid individual stocks

This may seem like strange advice coming from Warren Buffett, since he’s widely regarded as one of the best stock-pickers of all time.

However, Buffett has said on several occasions that the best investment for most people is a basic, low-cost S&P 500 index fund, like the one he is using in a bet to outperform a basket of hedge funds. The idea is that investing in the S&P 500 is simply a bet on American business as a whole, which is almost certain to be a winner over time.

To be clear, Buffett isn’t against buying individual stocks if you have the time, knowledge, and desire to do it right. He’s said that if you have six to eight hours per week to dedicate to investing, individual stocks can be a smart idea. If not, you should probably stick with low-cost index funds.

giving-to-charity_large

7. Remember to give back

Warren Buffett is a co-founder of and participant in The Giving Pledge, which encourages billionaires to give their fortunes away. Buffett plans to give virtually all of his money to charity, and since he signed the pledge, he has given away billions of dollars’ worth of his Berkshire shares to benefit various charitable organizations.

Buffett once said, “If you’re in the luckiest one percent of humanity, you owe it to the rest of humanity to think about the other 99 percent.” And even if you’re not a member of the 1%, it’s still important to find ways to give back.

 

 

 

Written By: Matthew Frankel
Source: The Motley Fool

10 Founders Share What Their Worst Boss Taught Them

We’ve all had bosses that make us crazy — whether it was a supervisor with a big temper, one that watched your every move or the one that never knew what he wanted. But even if at the time it was frustrating or demoralizing, there is an upside: You’ll never catch yourself being that kind of manager.

We caught up with 10 successful entrepreneurs who shared with us the lessons they learned from the worst bosses they’ve ever had.

 

20170110214430-daniellayakobvsky

1. COMMUNICATE CLEARLY

Name: Daniella Yacobovsky
Company: BaubleBar
Lesson: One of the things I have learned is to communicate openly and honestly with the folks you work with. Try to understand where their requests and feedback are coming from and be open to feedback. When you’re first starting and you’re a small company, it’s definitely easier to do. As you grow and have more people, it is a harder thing to scale but that doesn’t take away it’s importance.

 

20170110214505-gavinarmstrong

2. FOLLOW THE GOLDEN RULE

Name: Gavin Armstrong
Company: Lucky Iron Fish
Lesson: People who are bullies act that way because they are insecure about something else. They are very demeaning and not appreciative.

You want to be very respectful of people working with you. Remember they work with you, not for you. Be complimentary of their work, because they are putting a lot of time and effort into it.

 

20170110214542-merrillstubbs

3. HAVE STRONG CONVICTIONS

Name: Merrill Stubbs
Company: Food52
Lesson: Being indirect about what you want or what you expect is a really terrible tactic for managing people. It makes them feel like the ground is shifting beneath them — that’s an impediment and distraction from people doing their best work.

 

20170110214609-melissabenishay-1

4. BE A MENTOR

Name: Melissa Ben-Ishay
Company: Baked By Melissa
Lesson: The importance of open communication. When I think of the worst boss I ever hard, I don’t think of just one person.

I didn’t have a mentor. I didn’t have someone who wanted me to succeed. I didn’t have someone who took the time to sit down, have a conversation with me and help me be better at my job. So now, I really make the effort to be clear and honest with my employees and sit down with them and communicate.

 

20170110214649-oliverkharraz

5. FOLLOW THROUGH

Name: Oliver Kharraz
Company: Zocdoc
Lesson: I learned to only make promises that I can keep. I remember how upset I was when promises were made to me that were not kept, and I promised myself that I wouldn’t do that.

 

20170110214718-jennieripps

6. CONNECT WITH EVERY EMPLOYEE

Name: Jennie Ripps
Company: Owl’s Brew
Lesson: I learned how important it is to engage with my own team and also to ensure that there is buy-in across the board at an individual level.

 

20170110214755-timchen

7. LEAVE YOUR EGO AT THE DOOR

Name: Tim Chen
Company: Nerdwallet
Lesson: Ego gets in the way of success. I worked at a hedge fund that had a real “Lord of the Flies” feeling. It was pretty crazy. The problem with ego is the best ideas don’t win, because you have trouble facing the truth.

 

20170110214823-kylehill

8. TREAT EVERYONE WITH RESPECT

Name: Kyle Hill
Company: HomeHero
Lesson: The worst boss I had was actually a soccer coach I had in high school. I wouldn’t say he was a bad coach, but he yelled at me a lot. I realized that was something I could not handle. So my dad ended up pulling me from the team. I didn’t understand it at the time. I thought it wasn’t a big deal, and I had a tough skin.

But my dad was adamant about this, he said, “I don’t want people talking down to you because it hurts your self confidence. I need you to have the highest self confidence going into in everything you do in life; otherwise you’re not going to want to do it.”

I think it lends itself to being treated with respect and dignity. My dad said, “You can be stern, you can bench my son, you can take him aside and tell him what he needs to improve on. But don’t publicly reprimand him.”

Even to this day, I tell people, “If you’re upset with me, whether it’s my co-founder or an employee, talk to me like an adult.”

 

20170110214856-bastianlehmann

9. DON’T STAND IN THE WAY OF INNOVATION

Name: Bastian Lehmann
Company: Postmates
Lesson: One thing I try to do is help the people that want to do more. I want to help them realize that when they are at Postmates.

The worst boss I ever had told me that I couldn’t do that. He was weak and afraid someone was more hungry than him. When I saw someone trying hard, and they gave it everything they had, that someone would not give them guidance and help them succeed.

 

20170110214924-heidizak

10. HAVE A CLEAR VISION

Name: Heidi Zak
Company: Thirdlove
Lesson: The one thing I’ve noticed from having different types of bosses is that the best ones have a clearly articulated vision of what the team is working toward. You have to communicate it effectively and do it often. That’s what I try to do; you can’t say it too often.

 

 

 

Written by: Nina Zipkin

Source: Entrepreneur

Weekly Market Recap: April 11, 2016

Screen Shot 2016-04-11 at 2.16.48 PM

The week in review

  • Durable goods fell 3.0% m/m
  • Job openings down to 5.4 m
  • Services PMI up to 51.3
  • ISM non-mfg. PMI up to 54.5

The week ahead

  • CPI
  • PPI
  • NFIB small business survey
  • Industrial production
  • Empire State mfg. survey
  • Business inventories

For more information please visit the Source below.

(Source: JPMorgan)

How Sunday Stopped Being Special for the American Worker

Sometimes it's harder to come to work than other times.
Gilbert R. Boucher II/Daily Herald via AP

This month, workers who have been with Walmart for at least five years received a one-time bump in their pay checks. A couple hundred extra dollars is usually welcome, but this time, it actually symbolizes a loss: No longer will those workers receive premium pay for their Sunday shifts, as the idea of compensating people for toiling on what some consider a day of rest fades from American business.

Walmart discontinued Sunday premium pay, which had been $1 extra per hour, for new hires back in 2011. Those who had continued to receive it will receive a lump sum equal to half the amount of Sunday pay they received last year, according to a company release in January outlining a handful of adjustments that Walmart explained were a way of “simplifying its pay structure” — and reducing the overall cost of increasing base wages to $10 an hour across the board.

That hasn’t worked worked out so well for more experienced employees like 8-year Walmart veteran Nancy Reynolds, a 69-year-old cashier in Cape Canaveral, Fla., who works Thursday through Tuesday. Her base pay was already slightly above $10 an hour, so she didn’t get much of a raise, and the loss of a few extra Sunday dollars a week will hurt. “The younger people, the ones who haven’t been there that long, they got it, and I’m glad for them,” Reynolds says. “But they did it at the expense of me and everybody who’s been there a long time.”

In cutting Sunday pay, Walmart is actually behind most of the retail industry, which made that change as legal requirements to pay more on Sundays were stricken from state laws across the country. So-called “blue laws” once prohibited Sunday commerce altogether in 34 states in the 1960s. They were often weakened through compromise, with higher pay mandated in exchange for shopping being legalized. Even with no mandate, premium pay was often what the labor market demanded.

“To get people to work, when they’d never worked before, they started to pay Sunday pay,” says Craig Rowley, a retail compensation consultant with Korn Ferry who has done work for Walmart.

That changed over time as women entered the workforce, pushing more shopping from weekdays to the weekend. The labor market also loosened up, meaning workers couldn’t pick and choose which days they wanted to work; Sunday shifts are now expected rather than optional. And meanwhile, the importance of Sunday as a universal day of rest started to recede from the American psyche.

“When I was growing up, Sundays were kind of family day, church day,” Rowley says. “As we’ve gotten to be a more secular society, staying at home on Sunday is not necessarily expected. ‘We’re all going to be here all day Sunday’ is not as strong a cultural norm.”

Rhode Island and Massachusetts are now two of the last states to require retailers to pay time and a half on Sundays, and the retail industry is pushing hard to get the requirement rolled back in Massachusetts. “Sundays in retail have become unaffordable in our state,” wrote William Rennie, vice president of the Retailers Association of Massachusetts, in a Boston Globe op-ed.

Sunday premium pay hasn’t disappeared as quickly from other sectors, such as manufacturing and transportation, which have held on to a more traditional five or six-day work schedule. Most federal employees are still entitled to time and a half on Sundays. But more and more of their neighbors in the private sector won’t be so lucky.

Written by Lydia DePillis of The Washington Post 

(Source: The Washington Post)

 

Dos Equis retiring its ‘Most Interesting Man in the World’

Dos Equis
Dos Equis/Havas

After roughly nine years, the brewer of Dos Equisbeer has decided maybe the world’s reigning “Most Interesting Man” isn’t so interesting anymore.

As a result, the tan, suave, impressively bearded “Most Interesting Man in the World” is about to embark on his final journey over the next few months before fading into the pantheon of advertising icons.

But the man, who jaunts around the world on enviable adventures while often surrounded by beautiful women, certainly made life more interesting — and successful — for the previously under-the-radar Mexican beer brand.

Dos Equis, owned by Amsterdam-based brewer Heineken, nearly tripled its business since the campaign was introduced, says Andrew Katz, vice president of marketing for Dos Equis. In the past year alone, sales of Dos Equis Lager Especial grew 10.2% to $325.3 million in the 52 weeks ended Jan. 24, says market research firm IRIWorldwide. The number of cases Dos Equis shipped between 2007 and 2015 grew by 34.8%, according to the company. Heineken estimates that about 25% of its future growth will come from the Dos Equis brand, helped by its appeal to the growing population of Latino men.

Though the specific character played in TV ads by veteran actor Jonathan Goldsmith, 77, won’t be back, another equally interesting and likely younger man will take his place, Katz says.  Dos Equis plans to revamp the popular commercials in order to keep their edge for a new generation of customers.

“Culture has changed very dramatically” since the commercials debuted, Katz says. “Our Millennial drinker has changed quite dramatically, and the competition has only exploded with the advent of craft (beer). We just want to make sure that the (Most Interesting Man) story evolves.”

Besides catapulting a relatively small brand into the minds of beer drinkers, the Man developed a cult following. The campaign debuted regionally in 2007 and went national in 2009, quickly taking over the Internet and pop culture by inspiring Most Interesting Man Halloween costumes and endless memes riffing on The Man’s tagline, “I don’t always drink beer, but when I do, I prefer Dos Equis.”

Fans have co-opted the phrase to relate to even the most mundane life events: “I don’t always finish a bottle of shampoo, but when I do, I leave it in the shower for the next two months.” Numerous compilations have sprung up to chronicle the myriad one-liners that explain what makes the Most Interesting Man so interesting. Sample: “Sharks have a week dedicated to him” and “Presidents take his birthday off.”

Goldsmith tells USA TODAY that the character has succeeded for a simple reason: He “made millions of people smile over these many years,” he says. “There is a real connection with the fun and authenticity of the character, which I portray with the same joy and passion that is part of my own life.”

And he has sold millions of dollars worth of suds. The character was hatched as the craft-beer craze was emerging, helped later by the genre’s appeal to Millennials. Sales by the case of craft brews increased 11.5% in the 52 weeks ended Jan. 24, while domestic beer case sales grew just 0.6% in the same period, according to IRIWorldwide.

Working in Dos Equis’ favor, though, is that imported beers are also becoming more popular, with case sales up 9.7% in the past year. Within the category, Dos Equis sold 8.1% more cases of its Lager Especial than in the previous 52-week period and was the fourth most popular beer behind Heineken, Modelo Especial and Corona Extra.

Mexican beers are responsible for much of the growth in imported beer because “they are oftentimes considered more premium and appeal to both the growing Hispanic-American population and consumers looking for a slice of paradise,” according to a report out from Euromonitor last year. “Mexican beers have an aura of vacation and relaxation that appeals to many U.S. consumers.”

What has made Dos Equis ads so successful is that they are both unexpected and aspirational, says Allen Adamson, a marketing expert and founder of Brand Simple Consulting. Dos Equis created a character “every guy wants to grow up and be like,” Adamson says. “They went out and did something quirky. It has broken through and helped Dos Equis go from a regional brew to a big brand.”

Dos Equis is releasing almost no details about the new campaign, only that a different actor will take over as Most Interesting Man later this year. The ads will keep their core identity, though.

Dos Equis knows that change can be divisive, which is why the brand along with the creative agency behind the ads, Havas, have spent the last year and a half thinking about the campaign’s next move, says Jim Hord, Havas’ executive creative director. The first potential hazard: “I think people see the character and Jonathan as the same person,” he says. “Hopefully as we evolve the campaign, they’ll get over that.”

But first, Dos Equis will ride Goldsmith’s departure for the next several months. The brand has plans for a social media campaign leading up to Cinco de Mayo using the hashtag #adiosamigo and will distribute life-size cardboard cutouts of Goldsmith to grocery stores and bars for fans to pose with. The brand will also give customers the chance to win some of the Most Interesting Man’s possessions, like his mariachi suit, plus a grand prize trip to Mexico. Then, it will be time to move on.

“We’re viewing this as an opportunity to bring new users along with us,” Katz says. “To bring younger drinkers into the franchise who can better relate to a different Most Interesting Man in the World.”

Written by Hadley Malcolm of USA Today

(Source: USA Today)

Be the Boss with these Low-Cost Franchises

Copyright Merznatalia | Getty Images
Copyright Merznatalia | Getty Images

Quick. When you think of franchising, what comes to mind? McDonald’s? KFC? Subway? Sure, they’re well known and seem to be on every corner. But they’re also expensive to own. Just consider this: To even be looked at as a potential McDonald’s franchisee, an individual has to have liquid assets of at least $750,000. Start-up costs for the golden arches, which include construction and equipment expenses, range from $955,000 to around $2.3 million, and franchisees need to provide 40 percent of that total in cash and other non-borrowed assets in order to buy one.

Luckily, there are plenty of other franchises that cost far less and offer buyers the same satisfaction to experience life as a small-business owner. In fact, according to the International Franchise Association, the Washington, D.C., trade group that represents franchisors, there are more than 300 different business formats to choose from across a variety of industries, with some costing as little as $2,000 to get started.

So if you think you have what it takes to be the boss and like the established operating systems that franchising provides, read on. What follows is a look at some low-cost franchises that can have you calling the shots without breaking the bank.

JAZZERCISE

Long before Jane Fonda urged women to “feel the burn,” there was Judi Sheppard Missett, founder of Jazzercise. She created her dance-infused aerobic workouts in 1969 and began franchising the concept in 1983. She’s CEO of the Carlsbad, California-based company (her daughter is president) and still teaches and choreographs new routines.

Jazzercise instructors are trained and certified before becoming franchised. There are more than 8,300 Jazzercise locations worldwide in 30 countries. Opening one costs between $9,000 and $38,000, depending on the size and location of the studio. The initial franchise fee is $1,250.

JAN-PRO FRANCHISING INTERNATIONAL

This commercial cleaning service was started in 1991 and began franchising the following year. There are now more than 11,000 units across the U.S. and Canada, responsible for cleaning hospitals, gyms, office buildings, schools and churches. The company has been recognized for using “green” cleaning products that contain fewer harmful chemicals.

Potential franchisees can get started for as little as $3,100, which includes uniforms, starter supplies and equipment and training. The business can be run from home.

CRUISE PLANNERS

This vacation-planning franchise is aimed at folks who want to work from home and have a passion for travel. Franchisees sell full-service vacation packages, including cruises, land-based vacations, trip insurance and car rentals.

The Coral Gables, Florida-based company was started by veteran travel agent Michelle Fee in 1994 and began franchising in 1999. Getting started costs $10,495 and includes a six-day in-person training course in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, ongoing home-office support and $1 million in insurance.

H&R BLOCK

This well-known accounting and tax preparation company was started in 1955 by two brothers, Henry and Richard, who began franchising the concept the following year. There are now more than 11,000 offices across the U.S.

Franchisees pay a $2,500 refundable security deposit to get started. From there the total franchise cost can range from $35,000 to $136,000, depending on the size of the office, location and how much equipment and furniture needs to be purchased. The company states that one in seven Americans has their taxes prepared by H&R Block.

COFFEE NEWS

This company was started in 1988 when founder Jean Daum placed an order for lunch in her favorite restaurant and then had nothing to read but a sugar packet while she waited.

Coffee News was created to give diners a mix of quick lighthearted news, horoscopes, trivia and local business advertising. The paper is available for free in restaurants around the world and is supported by ads from local businesses.

Franchise licenses are priced by population. In the U.S., for instance, the cost of the first one is $8,500 and covers a population of 50,000 people. Additional franchises are $6,000 for each additional 40,000 population.

SUPERGLASS WINDSHIELD REPAIR

If you drive a car, chances are at one time or another you’ve had to deal with a chipped or cracked windshield. SuperGlass was started in 1992 as one of the first repair-only franchises for windshields and today has nearly 300 locations in the U.S., South Africa, France, Spain and Germany.

The business can be run from home, with a total investment (including initial franchise fees) of between $9,900 and $31,000, depending on the size of the market and the equipment purchased.

BABY BOOT CAMP

After the birth of her first child in 2001, Kristen Horler was looking for a challenging workout that didn’t require her to hire a personal trainer and babysitter or join an expensive gym. That’s when she created Baby Boot Camp, a stroller fitness program that lets moms keep their children with them while they work out.

The total franchise investment (including one-time franchise fee) is between $4,800 and $10,200, depending on the location and population of the territory purchased.

HALLMARK HOMECARE

With an aging baby boom population, one of the fastest-growing franchise concepts around is elder care. Franchisees of Hallmark Homecare search for and recruit professional caregivers for the elderly, placing them on a direct-hire basis designed to cost clients less than what an agency would charge.

The franchise can be run from home and costs between $13,900 and $26,900, including a $9,900 initial franchise fee.

CHRISTMAS DECOR

This franchise is designed as an opportunity for seasonal businesses (landscaping companies, for instance) to make money during the holidays—typically a slow time. Christmas Decor offers holiday decorating services, including outdoor lighting design, installation, maintenance and post-holiday removal for commercial and residential customers.

The total investment to get started is $9,900, including training for design and installation, customer billing support, marketing and wholesale pricing for lighting and other products. In addition, there is a 5 percent royalty fee on gross sales.

GUARD-A-KID

This franchise was started in March 2005 by a software engineer—and parent—to help other parents with technology-driven child safety products and education seminars. Franchisees conduct safety education events at day cares, schools and local businesses and give parents the chance to purchase Guard-A-Kid products.

Among its best-selling items is a child ID kit that includes printed and digital identification products that can be quickly uploaded online should a child go missing. The cost to purchase a franchise is between $5,000 and $7,500, depending on the package selected. There are no royalty fees, and the business can be run from home.

Written by Susan Caminiti of CNBC

(Source: CNBC)

8 Female Tech CEOs You Should Know

NEW YORK (TheStreet) — Only five companies of the 41 tech companies on the Fortune 500 list can say they are in the technology sector and have a female CEO — that’s an improvement.

For years critics have slammed Silicon Valley for its underrepresentation of women, and Ellen Pao’s dramatic departure from Reddit last week, paired with the dismissal and resignation of two other top female employees at Reddit, has thrown the topic back into headlines.

“The company is growing, and we have the opportunity to improve in many areas — including the number of women in leadership positions,” new Reddit CEO Steve Huffman said to Re/code, when asked if the company had a gender discrimination issue. “I am confident in our ability to recruit women at the executive level, as we have made a point to do so at Hipmunk, where more than half of the executives are women.”

Even though several of world’s largest tech companies are actively trying to hire more female employees, they are still struggling to include women in the fast-growing sector, with the tech companies averaging just 30% of their staffers as female.

In its recent diversity report, Facebook announced only 32% of all its employees are female, with just 23% of its senior leadership roles belonging to women. These numbers practically matched the ones the company released last year. Yahoo! announced slightly better numbers with 37% of its staff female, but once again only 24% of its leadership were female, including CEO Marissa Mayer.

Apple reflects similar gender breakdowns as its fellow tech companies. At the time of the demographics release, CEO Tim Cook wrote in a post on the company’s Web site, “As CEO, I’m not satisfied with the numbers on this page.”

This is not to say that there aren’t prominent females within these companies’ boardrooms.

Sheryl Sandberg became Facebook’s chief operating officer in 2008, leaving behind her vice president role at Google. Sandberg is known for her strong stance on women’s rights, with her New York Times bestseller Lean In rigorously diving into the topic. Amy Hood became chief financial officer for Microsoft in 2013, making her the company’s first ever female CFO. Apple counts three females among its executive leadership — Lisa Jackson, vice president of environment, policy and social initiatives; Angela Ahrendts, senior vice president of retail; and Denise Young Smith, vice president of worldwide human resources.

But the disappointing fact is women still struggle to reach the top spot at many of these tech giants. Of Forbes’ list of the world’s 10 most valuable brands, of which Apple is ranked number one, only IBM has a female CEO.

So here are eight female tech CEOs leading the way for many more women to come, we hope:

1. Lucy Peng — Ant Financial

Lucy Peng, Chief People Officer and Chief Executive Office of Ant Financial Services Group, speaks during the Global Conference on Women and Entrepreneurship in Hangzhou city, China, in May.

© Zhejiang Daily/Imaginechina/Corbis Lucy Peng, Chief People Officer and Chief Executive Office of Ant Financial Services Group, speaks during the Global Conference on Women and Entrepreneurship in Hangzhou city, China, in May.

Lucy Peng is one of Alibaba’s most powerful female executives, as the Chief People Officer as well as heading the group’s standalone financial services unit, Ant Financial. Ant Financial, which targets individuals and small businesses, reportedly serves more than 400 million active users.

Peng, who is on Alibaba’s executive board, is estimated to have a net worth of $1.2 billion. Her 4% stake in Ant Financial was valued at about $982 million, according to Bloomberg News.

Alibaba didn’t respond to requests for comment, but the Chinese e-commerce group has often been credited for its inclusiveness of women, with a third of its founding partners female.

2. Meg Whitman — HP

Meg Whitman, chief executive officer of Hewlett-Packard Co., speaks during the HP Discover 2015 conference in Las Vegas, in June.

© David Paul Morris/Bloomberg/Getty Images Meg Whitman, chief executive officer of Hewlett-Packard Co., speaks during the HP Discover 2015 conference in Las Vegas, in June. 

Described by Forbes as “blunt, folksy and persistent,” Meg Whitman reluctantly took over Hewlett-Packard in 2011, becoming chairwoman in 2014. Whitman’s dedication to fixing the tech giant continues with the company announcing in October 2014 a split between its computer and printer business and its enterprise segments.

Before joining HP, Whitman was the CEO of eBay, where she expanded the company from 30 employees to more than 15,000. She also made headlines in 2010 when she ran unsuccessfully as a Republican candidate for California governor.

“I was just focused on how can I lead this young company the most effective way I can, and…what I also, over my career, finally thought about is…there are lots of things I can change but my gender is not one of them, and so it is kind of what it is,” Whitman said an interview with MAKERS. “I just have to lead according to my personality, according to what I think is necessary under any set of circumstances.”

Whitman made $19.6 million last year at HP, and has an estimated net worth of $2.2 billion, according to Forbes.

3. Susan Wojcicki — YouTube

YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki arrives for the annual Allen and Co. media conference Sun Valley, Idaho on July 7.

© Mike Blake/Reuters YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki arrives for the annual Allen and Co. media conference Sun Valley, Idaho on July 7. 

Wojcicki began working for Google when she was four months pregnant and the company was operating out of her family’s garage. She helped spearhead Google’s $1.65 billion acquisition of YouTube in 2006, and eight years later was made CEO of YouTube.

Wojcicki has been under pressure to increase profits at YouTube, with The Wall Street Journal reporting the video site was roughly breaking even. YouTube was highlighted several times on Google’s second-quarter earnings call by Google’s new Chief Financial Office Ruth Porat, who noted strong revenue growth at the division.

Now Wojcicki makes up part of the 30% of female Googlers, and in December she made headlines for an op-ed in which she championed a woman’s right to maternity leave. “Having experienced how valuable paid maternity leave is to me, my family and my career, I never thought of it as a privilege,” Wojcicki wrote in The Wall Street Journal. “But the sad truth is that paid maternity leave is rare in America, and the U.S. lags behind the rest of the world in providing for the needs of pregnant women and new mothers.”

While her annual salary is unknown, the YouTube chief is estimated to have a $300 million net worth, according to Forbes.

4. Marissa Mayer — Yahoo!

Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer arrives at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala in New York in May.

© Lucas Jackson/Reuters Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer arrives at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala in New York in May.

Marissa Mayer left her role at Google to become CEO of search company Yahoo! in 2012, and since then she has become one of the world’s the most recognizable female CEOs. Mayer has not only upgraded Yahoo!’s content, but also worked to boost its mobile revenue. She has seen some success, with quarterly mobile revenues increasing 61% year over year in the company’s most recent earnings report to $234 million from $145 million.

“You can be good at technology and like fashion and art. You can be good at technology and be a jock. You can be good at technology and be a mom. You can do it your way, on your terms,” Mayer said in a previous interview with CNN shortly before she took over the reins at Yahoo!.

Yahoo! declined to provide an updated statement for this story.

In 2014, Mayer’s pay package increased a whopping 69% to $42 million, ranking her as one of the tech industry’s highest-paid CEOs.

5. Safra Catz — Oracle

Safra Catz, co-chief executive officer of Oracle Corp., speaks during the Oracle OpenWorld 2014 conference in San Francisco in 2014.

© David Paul Morris/Bloomberg//Getty Images Safra Catz, co-chief executive officer of Oracle Corp., speaks during the Oracle OpenWorld 2014 conference in San Francisco in 2014. 

Safra Catz joined Oracle 16 years ago, and in the time since served as its co-president, chief financial officer and is now one of its two CEOs. Catz made a name for herself at Oracle by leading the company through several acquisitions, including eight in fiscal 2013.

Currently ranked the 14th most powerful woman in business by Fortune, Catz made $37.7 million at Oracle last year.

An Oracle spokesperson declined to comment.

6. Virginia “Ginni” Rometty — IBM

IBM CEO Ginni Rometty at a news conference in New York, in April.

© Richard Drew/AP Photo IBM CEO Ginni Rometty at a news conference in New York, in April. 

After joining IBM in 1981 as a systems engineer in Detroit, Virginia Rometty took over the reins in 2012, becoming the company’s first female CEO. In the three years since, Rometty has worked to boost profit margins while still trying to grow the company by expanding its software side, cloud computing and Watson artificial intelligence technology.

“IBM is an iconic company, it’s an important company to this world, and I never felt that the most important thing was that I was a women. That wasn’t it. It was about being and doing the right things as CEO for IBM,” Rometty said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal.

Despite her efforts, IBM has struggled to grow revenue, reporting a year-over-year decline for the 12th straight quarter in April.

Last year, Rometty made $17.9 million.

7. Ursula Burns — Xerox

Ursula Burns, CEO of Xerox, attends the French employers' body MEDEF union summer forum in Jouy-en-Josas, France, in 2014. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier (FRANCE - Tags: BUSINESS HEADSHOT)

© Benoit Tessier/Reuters Ursula Burns, CEO of Xerox, attends the French employers’ body MEDEF union summer forum in Jouy-en-Josas, France, in 2014. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier (FRANCE – Tags: BUSINESS HEADSHOT) 

Ursula Burns joined Xerox in 1980 as a summer intern and has worked her way up to CEO. Burns’ current role is helping a company known for its copying machines adjust to a world that continues to go paperless.

“The barriers for women were structural; they were defined by law, as were the barriers for African Americans,” Burns said in an interview with PBS. “So now we remove those, and it’s just a fair run to the games. So the men are going to have to deal with that.”

In its first-quarter earnings report, Xerox reported $4.5 billion in revenue, down 6.3% from the $4.8 billion it generated the same quarter the previous year. Burns made $22.2 million in 2014, according to company reports.

8. Lisa Su — AMD

AMD CEO Dr. Lisa Su speaking at Semicon China in March.

© AMD via Facebook AMD CEO Dr. Lisa Su speaking at Semicon China in March. 

Lisa Su is one of the newest CEOs to this list, becoming Advanced Micro Devices CEO in October 2014. She had joined AMD in 2011, and in that time worked with Microsoft and Sony to build semi-custom AMD chips for the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 game consoles.

Su previously worked for IBM, where she was named one of MIT Technology Review’s “Top Innovator Under 35” in 2002. She left IBM for Freescale, and led the company’s R&D efforts and networking-chip business.

“When we see more men and women CEOs talking actively about promoting diversity and gender equality, we know that this can change,” Su said at the No Ceilings Conference in April. “So my hope for the next 20 years from now, we won’t be talking about how many women CEOs are on the Fortune 500 because it won’t matter. It will be natural for corporate leadership to reflect the most talented individuals.”

Su currently has a $850,000 base salary at AMD with an annual cash performance bonus of 150% of her base salary, according to company filings.

Written by Meg Garner of The Street

(Source: The Street)