A key with a dollar-sign implemented on White. Includes ClippingPath
James Steidl/Kyle Gruba A key with a dollar-sign implemented on White. Includes ClippingPath

When I first got started in business all I was able to focus on was making to the next day. The number and variety of challenges and learning experiences that I was encountering was mind-numbing.

Over time things got a bit easier, with the addition of systems and employees, so I was able to start looking forward a couple of weeks or a month or two. My world was no longer “how to keep this company going.”

With that lessening of immediate pressure from the business I was able to start thinking about my personal future, my life beyond running a remodeling company for ever and ever. In order to have that future my wife, Nina, and I realized we better get started building wealth now.

The power of goal-setting helped us in this work. I remember setting the goal to pay off the mortgage on our home. On a small piece of paper I put that goal and the date by when it was to occur. I put that paper where the paper money was held in my wallet, so I would see it every time I opened my wallet. We made the goal a year ahead of time.

In 1998 Nina and I committed to each other that by 2008 we would be living a remodeling company free existence. The year 2008 would mark 30 years of being in this business, a long time. We wanted the ability to do other things.

This clear goal helped us drive the systemizing of our company’s process to a very high level, with virtually everything the company did being written down and referenced regularly. At the same time, we became even more aggressive savers personally, driven by the sense that the next 10 years were when we needed to build up our wealth.

In 2007 we sold our company, something we had never been counting on happening. And we achieved our goal of not running a remodeling company one year earlier than the date we had set.

Don’t wait to start accumulating wealth, even if you are stressed and overworked and it seems like your company is just making it from day-to-day.  Take a small percentage (1% to 5%) of every check that comes into your company and put it into a savings account. Run your business with the remainder of the monies from the checks.

Watch the savings account build. It is inspiring to watch that happen. It gives you a sense of control over your future.

Renting an office? Consider buying a building and have your company rent it from you. Have the company pay a bit more than market-rate rent.

These are two simple steps that, along with others like them and setting a few simple and crystal-clear goals, will help you go from being managed by your business to building wealth for a future that provides you with options. You deserve it and no one else will do it for you, so get started today!