Whether you’re living off your credit card or maxing out your 401(k), businessman Matt Manero says you need more money and he shares his tips on how to make it happen
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Entrepreneur Matt Manero is “You need more money,” and Manero says that applies to almost anyone, no matter what your salary is or how much you’ve saved.
With no inheritance to rely on or even a father figure to turn to for advice, Manero depended on his own grit and determination to turn his company into a money-making machine. He is now a very successful business owner, author, podcaster and inspirational speaker who can motivate anyone to start now on the path to making more money.
Even if you think you have enough money, Manero says more money means more power to do good for those you love and care about.
So, let’s get charged up about making more money!
JennyHoff: Matt, thank you so much for joining me today. I’m really excited to have this conversation.
MattManero: So am I, can’t wait to do it.
Hoff: I love your book, and I will say that I have read a lot of these books, I’ve interviewed a lot of financial experts and motivational speakers, but yours just really spoke to me and I’m definitely a tough love kind of person, I like when somebody says it like it is and tells you what you need to do, and I’d say your book definitely does that. So we’re going to go through some of the main points here today, but let’s start with your back story.
You mentioned in your book how you started from nothing, but the thought of making more money just kept you up enough nights that you finally did something about it. Can you tell us about that experience?
Manero: I mean, I started my business in 1995, I was 25 years old. I started from zero. I moved to Dallas, Texas. I didn’t have a friend of a friend of a friend. I was transferred with the company, I was supposed to be here for a short period time and then go back to California live on the beach and have this office up and running. And the minute I got here because of that game plan I rented a little dumpy apartment, I didn’t care about meeting anybody, it was all work-based, and immediately everything changed. The budget that we talked about, the goals, all that sort of stuff, and I basically resigned from that company after a couple months and found myself in a dumpy one bedroom apartment trying to make it.
Then I got sued for breach of my non-compete clause, and literally was left with no customers, no money. And that could have been the bottom but it got worse, my car got repossessed, I mean, literally lived on my last $40 on a gas car that I bought milk and frosted flakes and walked back to that dumpy apartment and said, “We’re going to make some changes here.”
And I started a business, and it was a brutal, vicious road, the same road that most entrepreneurs face. Business is tough, it’s nasty, it’s hard, it’s scary. And I went through all of those emotions. And then along the way got married, along the way had some children, and unfortunately the business, Jenny, just never produced at the level that I thought it was supposed to. Is that what most entrepreneurs do though? We get the business cards, we get the corporation papers, we put the sign out, and we’re like, “Well, here we go.”
Hoff: Where’s the money?
Manero: Where’s my money? Aren’t I supposed to make more as my own boss than I was when I was working for somebody? Isn’t that how it works?
Hoff: Yeah, absolutely. And then you did make a decision though that you wanted to have a hundred-million-dollar business. So what kind of said to you, “OK, not only do I want this, but I can do this.” What was that turning point for you?
Manero: My wife, we’ve been married 19 years, been together 21. And I remember the turning point, I mean, actually if I even go there emotionally I can feel the touching of the door knob knowing that I was going to tell her the truth when I walked through the door.
And the truth was that we were in bad shape financially. I really hadn’t been honest with her for a long time. I had lied to her about how well we were doing. And lights would get shut off, the power company would shut us off, and I’d make some silly cockamamie excuse as to why they were shut off. “Well, I sent the check in but they must have lost it.” I mean, really, ridiculous stuff and lying to my beloved spouse about this.
And, finally, I couldn’t lie anymore because she’s very intuitive, and she knew that I was feeding her a lot of bull. So I came home and I told her that night, I said, “We’re in deep trouble. We’re really financially struggling.” And my wife said, “I’m going to ask you one question – did you pay your employees?” And I said, “Yes,” and she went crazy. Because I hadn’t paid myself, I hadn’t paid myself in many, many, many, many, many months.
And now she lost it, and started crying, stamped her fee saying, “How could you do that to me and our boys?” I have three boys. “How could you do that to us?” And she went in a room, slammed the door. I spent another night on the couch and I made a vow, I said, “I’m going to do two things. The first is I’m going to build a hundred-million-dollar company,” and I said, “I’m going to shut my wife up.” That was my second goal. The publisher made me say something along the lines of I wanted to take care of Rocky forever, but the reality is I never wanted to hear those words coming from her mouth again. And I didn’t.
Hoff: Yeah, you wanted to show her. You wanted to show her up and say, “OK, I’m going to do this and you’re going to eat those words one day.”
Manero: Jenny, my wife used to always tell me, “You’re so much bigger than your business, Matt. One day you’ll realize that. One day you’ll tap into your potential and you’ll realize that everything you’re doing is too small, you can be bigger.” That day I made the decision. At that time my company was doing $36 Million a year, and we were doing OK, but listen, I had a wife and three children. My wife didn’t work and everyone knows what that sort of feels like. It’s like, “Well, the numbers kind of look good. But where’s the cash?” Right?
In that moment I said, “Well, I’m going to build a hundred-million-dollar business.” And do you know that eighteen months later we hit $111 Million?
Manero: It all changed.
Hoff: And is it by using the kind of the methodology you set forth in the book which we’re going to get to in a minute?
Manero: For me, it was. I mean, the beautiful part about the book in my opinion is that it is literally the roadmap, the story I took, this is how I did it. I didn’t have a mentor, I didn’t have much of a father figure, I certainly didn’t have an uncle who took me under his wing and showed me the ropes. I mean, I had to learn all of this stuff on my own.
Hoff: I really love reading through your book, and it comes through clearly this is your personal experience. And you even start up the book with the story of your brother-in-law and this tragedy, this catastrophe that happened all of a sudden that upended his whole family and his financial life and how you were able to step in. And this is really what you said is the impetus for writing this book, because you realized so many people who seem like they have it all together don’t. And the minute something happens that they’re not expecting, it all falls apart. So can you briefly tell us about that story and how that came to be?
Manero: Yeah, my brother-in-law John died two years ago. He died at 46 years old; he left a wife and four children with no health insurance, no life insurance, and a hundred bucks in the bank. John is my beloved wife, Rocky’s only brother, and maybe some people aren’t close with their brother-in-laws but I was close with him. But I was close with him because my wife and he were just thick as thieves.
So when John got sick and then eventually died almost one year to the day afterward you could not have taken a worse person from my wife. And I mean, including even me. She loved him more than she loves me and I know she loves me. I mean, it was that tragic, it was outrageously painful.
But then when you really peel that on your back a little bit you realize, “I mean, what could have fixed, what could have made that a little bit better?” And they had plenty of time together, they had lots of love and fun and experiences together, but the thing that was missing was – where was the money? How did he work for 25 years? He worked hard and he ended up with nothing, $50 a month in a term life insurance policy could have paid his family 250 thousand bucks, but he never did it.
And so we dropped in, we took care of the financial needs for that period of time. And I saw both sides of it, Jenny, I saw this, “Oh, my God. This really happened. How many other people is it happening to?” And then I also experienced the gratitude and the power that money has when you can move in and try your best to fix problems. Now money isn’t going to buy you out of cancer but it sure as heck is going to buy you out of a lot of problems.
Hoff: Yeah, and buy your family out of then dealing with not only the grief of your cancer or God forbid a death, but at the same time be able to not have to deal with financial difficulties. You contend in the book, so then you kind of get us going and you said, “OK, now it’s time to change that money mindset that you have. Money is not evil, money is good, money buys you what you need, money can help people.” But you contend that something is missing in most of us these days, unbridled ambition, a burning unyielding desire to cross whatever finish line you desire. Can you tell us what you mean by that?
Manero: I think we’re numb. I think we’re numb in such a good robust economy. We are numb. We’ve all forgot about 2008, no one even remembers it. There’s an entire generation, by the way if you are 21, 22, 23 in 2008, just graduating college, you’re now in your early 30’s and you’ve never experienced the recession. And so lots of people think that the good times that we’re enjoying right now is how it is, and it’s not. I’ve been through three very nasty recessions in my 23 years in business, and I know what it’s like to be terrified, just awake at night not knowing how we’re going to fix this financial situation.
And so the way I always tapped into my action and my execution to keep moving was being ambitious. And I would say to myself, “Who’s beating me? Who’s beating me?” Not who have I beaten? Who’s beating me? How do I catch this? Who am I supposed to catch?
And it created this incredible fuel that I call unbridled ambition. And people are so afraid of it, Jenny. We are afraid to tell someone that we are ambitious and we’re competitive and we’re going to beat you and we’re going to catch you, and not only am I going to it on the ping pong table but I’m going to do it in the bank account too. They’re afraid.
Hoff: Yeah, absolutely. People are just kind of comfortable and they’re satisfied, and it kind of brings us to the next part in your book where you talked about the false positive, this kind of feeling like I’m good, I’m OK, I got a little bit put in a 401(k), I got money going into some savings account, I pay all my bills, I’m good.
In fact, you even talked about how people think, “OK, you make $100,000 which a lot of people don’t make that. But if you make $100,000, I’m rich.” But in reality, you said $100,000 isn’t what it was in 2000 or in the 90’s when that was the top one percent. It pays for 2/3 kind of what it did before. So can you talk about what the false positive is and how we get out of that mindset?
Manero: Yeah, we got to understand the data for a second, and you were touching on it. When I graduated college in 1991 to be in the top one percent of earners you needed to make $100,000. When I ask audiences or people what that number is today, you would be amazed what people throw us. So some people say $10 million, and some people say $75,000, it’s gone down. And the answer is it’s $384,000.
So if you want to be in the top one percent of earners today you need to make $384,000. And guess what? Most people still think a hundred grand is a lot.
And the purpose of my book is not necessarily to pick that number for the reader, but it is to share data that says, “Wake up. The money has moved and you have not moved with it. You are chasing someone else’s number, which is completely outdated.” So who are we chasing? We’re chasing the information we got from our dads or our families or our brothers or our neighbors or our financial adviser who’s picking some number that tells us what our retirement is.
Man, I want my retirement based on my lifestyle by design, Jenny. I want to tell my money how it’s going to deliver what I want at the end of my life whether that’s retirement or whatever. I’m in control of my money, because here’s one thing that’s important – money is like the old Labrador. Do you have a dog?
Manero: I got a Labrador; I got a Labradoodle, right? And all that dog wants to do is just roll over and have her belly petted. And money’s the same way; it just wants to be subservient to its owner. That’s all money wants, and instead think of what it is to most people, it’s like the devil, it slaps you around all day long, all week, all pay period, all month, all your whole life, whereas if you get control of it and you say, “This money is earmarked and it’s going here.” Now the money just rolls over and says, “OK, I’d like to do that again. Put me over there more.”
What is over there? It’s your own reserve account that I we’re going to talk about, it’s your investment strategy, it’s your retirement account, it’s paying off debt. It’s all of this. But you have to tell the money how it’s going to be treated whereas is the money telling you how you’re going to be treated.
Hoff: Yeah, absolutely and I really, really love some of your strategies for starting to accumulate that money, because I think most of us don’t even know where it goes every day. You suddenly see a credit card bill you have to pay and you’re like, “How the heck did it get that high? I just bought it being here and there from Amazon, ate out, shopped at Whole Foods. How did it get that high?” So we’re going to kind of go into the mode you say you need to be in if you want to get into accumulation mode, which I really love.
So you do though first talk about the different levels of wealth that we should have. For instance in your 30’s you say we should have three times our salary as net worth. Can you go into that what net worth is and how you would get to this idea of how much you need to have it?
Manero: You bet. Jenny, just to go back just a sec. What you asked about my definition of what false positive is? False positive is when you think you’re doing better than you really are. It’s where you actually have convinced yourself that you are OK, that I’m good, I can buy the $2,000 Prada purse, I can buy the Disney World vacation. And in reality you’re still way behind.
And so, I just want to get clear on that because so many people live in false positive and I think just because they can get approved they are OK to buy it, and there really is no connection between getting credit approved and whether you should do it. So to answer your question, I didn’t have anyone telling me what the formula was. I literally had to work on this formula. I was like, “How do I know I have enough money? Where am I? Am I on track, am I off, am I forward, am I behind?”
And so I worked on the formula and I call it the \u2018one, three, five, ten formula.’ And so, someone in their 20’s, and I don’t really care whether they’re 23 or 29, it doesn’t matter. They should have one times their income as their net worth. So that’s assets minus liabilities. It’s different than liquid cash.
Their net worth, so that could come in assets of a home or cars, boats, whatever, could be 401(k). Whatever that net worth accumulation is, it’s assets minus liabilities. In your 20’s it should be one times your earnings. If a guy makes $50,000, he should have a $50,000 net worth.
When we go to our 30’s it bumps to 3X. And so now we have a successful woman in business, she’s making 150 grand a year in her 30’s, she needs to have a 3X that 150 or $450,000.
In the 40’s it jumps to 5X. So now if someone’s making 200 grand in their 40’s, they need to have a million bucks in net worth. And now in your 50’s you need to have 10X. So it moves in decades and caps out at 59 years old at 10X.
Now here’s why it works, because if you make $200,000 a year and you’re in your 50’s and you have 10X, that’s $2 million net worth in your retirement, you have already pre-determined what you want your retirement to look like. And here’s what I mean by that, Jenny. If you wanted to Tuscany and you wanted the private jets, you would have made more than $200,000.
So your $200,000, the salary that you worked for your whole life is determining how your retirement is going to be. And therefore you really think you want Tuscany but you don’t want Tuscany, because if you did you would work harder and made more money, you don’t want private jets. So therefore the 10X kind of works for you because 2 million bucks in net worth could probably keep you living pretty close to what you lived on at $200,000.
Hoff: Yeah, and I mean I think that’s a very interesting formula and I highly encourage people who buy your book to look at that and to calculate it, because that at least gets you started to say, “OK, this is how much I need to be having before I can get even into any state of feeling somewhat comfortable about my future.” And you mentioned in your book that people are spending their future income today, and that’s a big problem.
I want to talk about being a blamer versus being a game facer, and how can we shift that mindset. What are they and how do we shift it?
Manero: There are three mindsets when it connects to money. Now in my business, my equipment financing business, we have financed tens of thousands of small businesses when they buy equipment for their business. And I have seen hundreds of thousands of credit applications and credit reports in bureaus. I have a very inside look on what’s going on in small business.
And through my conversations with so many of these thousands and thousands of people I realize that there are three mindsets toward money. I call in the book the blamers, I call it the dreamers, and I call it the game facers.
So, the blamers are the ones who say, “Oh, my gosh, look who’s in the White House.” Right? “There we go another four years of misery here. We’re never going to get ahead until the president gets out of the White House.” Look, I don’t care who’s in the White House, it has zero impact on my financial situation, period, zero. The blamer also says things like, “I didn’t grow up with any money, man. I mean, my parents didn’t teach me that stuff. How am I supposed to teach myself? How am I supposed to know about that stuff?” Well, you got to figure it out.
The next phase is the dreamer, and we all have the dreamer. The dreamer is Uncle Bob who says, “Man, if I had just bought that corner a lot 20 years ago, could you imagine what that corner lot would be worth today?” Right? “One day when I win the lottery,” he tells everybody on Christmas, “When I win the lottery I’m going to really buy nice gifts for everybody.” Right? The dreamer.
And then the game facer, which are guys like me who clearly understand that we are 100 percent in control of everything that happens to us in our lives, both to the positive and to the negative. If I screw up, I got to take full ownership for it. If I win, sometimes I get to pat myself on the back, usually I have to pat a teammate who helped me along the way.
So the game facers are people who understand that money is a tool, money is used to buy things. And what can you buy? You can buy more money with it by investing, you can buy freedom, and you can buy the most important thing which is called time. And that’s the thing that escaped my brother-in-law. He always used to say to me, Jenny, “I got time. I know I’m behind, man. I know I’m behind, but I’ve got time. I just need to get the kids through school, and I just need to get that paid off. I got time.”
And he goes to the doctor to get a shot of what he thought was just going to be a steroid shot and he was going to go back to work, and the doctor says, “We’ve got big problems here, buddy. You’ve got stage four cancer.” And immediately that night went to the emergency room and died one year to the day. You don’t know you got time.
Hoff: Yeah, I mean, absolutely. And that blamer, dreamer, game facer, I’m sure we can kind of see ourselves in all three of that. We probably have a little bit of all of those in us, but it’s really which do you choose to concentrate on and to increase your mindset as.
So you’ve talked about lifestyle by design and you mentioned this in the book, can you kind of give us an idea of what that is? What is lifestyle by design?
Manero: So here I think a nice saving grace for people in the book is I think I do throw out numbers and formulas of how you determine where you are, are you on track, are you off track. But at the end of the day if you come up with your lifestyle by design you’ve won and you’ve become rich. And that could mean that you want to surf in Costa Rica six months out of the year and you want to drive a truck six months out of the year to be able to do that.
If that is your lifestyle by design and you figured out how to throw off enough cash to do it you’ve won the game. The whole purpose of the book and life in my opinion is to lead the life that we design for ourselves. And we spend so little time actually doing that. Most people have no idea what their core values are or what their visualization is or what they want for themselves. They’re literally floating based on these pre-determined roadmaps given to them by someone else.
And I just have never lived like that, and I challenge the reader and the audience today to draw a line in the sand that says, “You know what? Today’s the day that I’m going to take my own damn life back. It’s my life style by design designed by me.”
Hoff: That’s right. You get one shot at it. And you talked here about your lifestyle by design and kind of how to get that idea of what you want, and you talked about core values, visualization, the doorman principle, goal setting in action, can you just briefly go into what each one of those mean?
Manero: Core values actually comes from when a few years ago I torched my business, so we’d hit that hundred-million dollar mark. And I begin to see the cracks in it, and so I literally started to rebuild it based on core values. And that really just gave me such incredible clarity in business and it transferred over to my life.
The first thing people have to do is know what do you stand for? I mean, really what line in the sand are you not going to cross? And I can go very gruff on it, and I can also be very politically correct. But let’s go to gruff for a second because it does impact my family. Are you going to get beat? Are you going to allow your spouse to physically abuse you? That’s a tough core value line in the sand. Are you going to be verbally abused? Are you going to be talked down to? Right? Are you going to be lied to about your money?
What is the core value that you are not willing to cross? Are you going to allow your children to drink? What happens if your kid smokes weed, are you going to allow that? What is the core value that you represent, because once you get clarity on those, I’ll give you one of mine, one of my core values is I am required to be a better father to my three boys than my father was to me.
So when my kid, I come home after say 14, 15, 16 hour day and my youngest who’s 12 says, “Hey, dad. Let’s go, let’s go play basketball in the sports court.” And I say, “OK, let’s go.” Because I had my core values clear, crystal clear that I’m going to be a better father, because my father would say to me when I would come home and there was no sport court or any of that stuff, believe me, right? But he would say, “Nah, get away, just leave me alone. I’m going to sleep.” I never say that to my kids because my core value says I have to be a better father to my boys than my father was to me.
So the ability to have that level of clarity is just unbelievable because once you have that level of clarity, Jenny, then you can visualize as a foundation what can I do with it? How great could I be? Now that I know who the heck I am and what I’m not going to tolerate, how amazing can I be?
And then you have to do this doorman principle, you have to drop this phantom, this fantasy doorman in front of it that blocks any problem that interferes with your visualization and your core values. So I’ll give you a perfect example: If you think about a luxury building say in Manhattan for example, you ain’t getting in unless the doorman clears you, period. If you don’t have some reason to be inside you’re not getting inside.
Why don’t we do that with our core values in our lives? Why do we let so much garbage in? We let it in from our parents, we let it in from our lousy spouses, from our brother, our deadbeat, whoever, from our lousy clients who make our lives so miserable, from that employee who stole from us but we didn’t have the guts to fire him or her so we kind of kept him around, and now everybody’s sort of thinking about, “Well, geez, is Manero going to fire anybody? I mean, this guy stole from us and he didn’t fire him, right?”
I mean, it’s comical in a way but it’s so vital, right? Because once you do all that then we can set some massive goals, and then the most important thing and it does sound trite, but it’s legit, it’s the only way you make more money is you have to take massive action. Money does not come to you, money is worked for, it is found, it is earned.
Hoff: Absolutely, and you go through some things that you need to do if you want to get that money in your book. And you talked about these six steps to put it into action. And I wish we had all the time in the world so we could really delve into them, but people have to read the book to get all of that great advice.
But I want to kind of at least briefly go through them. Your first is the litmus test and finding the right platform. What does that mean?
Manero: I think there are three phases to wealth, the first is broke, the second is accumulation mode, the third is rich. You have to know where you stand, and so you have to take a litmus test. And I give you the questions of the litmus test so you have an idea of where you actually are.
I believe most people are broke living like they are rich. And so I give a specific formula of what’s the number. I’m happy to tell it to the audience, the number is you are broke if you don’t have $50,000 liquid cash sitting readily available for you. Fifty grand liquid cash, until you have that you are broke.
So what do most people do? They get $10,000 and they go to Disney World, right? They get $15,000 and they say, “Well, it’s Christmas time, I got to buy the $2,000 Prada, right?” I mean, you’re broke unless you have 50 grand. And here’s why all that matters – because, as I’ve learned in building my network and leveraging up and meeting some really successful people, they bring you into deals that give you the opportunity to make more money. But you know what the starting point of that is? A hundred grand.
The billionaire who wants to bring you into the private equity deal isn’t bringing you in for your $10,000. He’s bringing you in at a $100,000 is the minimum buy in. And so people need to understand these numbers.
So $50,000 gets out of broke, once you leave broke you go into accumulation mode. And accumulation mode when I began to say that to myself and my wife it really changed everything, it’s when it gives you the power to say no to the frivolous spending because you default to accumulation mode. It’s what I call stacking and racking. We are accumulating cash.
So what would we rather do, $2,000 in the shoes or $2,000 in the bank account? Because until you get this reserve account built up and we can talk about the reserve account if you want, but until that reserve account is built up you have no shot of ever getting rich.
Hoff: Absolutely, and people always say, “Well, the rich get richer, the rich get richer, the rich get richer.” And that’s mainly because they have the money to invest in things that make them richer. And if you’re always in survival mode a little bit, which is, “OK, I can live a comfortable lifestyle, but no one better come asking me for a loan any time soon,” then you’re not really ever going to get rich.
And so you have some strict rules in there, you say, “Until you get that money in the bank you need to cut your spending completely, you need to give up on your credit cards, and you need to sell everything in the house that you can that you don’t need anymore.” And I’ll leave that at that because those are pretty clear cut in what they need to do.
Now you did mention the reserve accounts, and you’re very, very strong on this point of having an operating account and a reserve account in two different banks. Can you kind of go into that and why that’s so important?
Manero: It’s the key fundamental to getting rich. You have to separate where the money lives. So, the first account we call it the operating account, that is basically where your bills, and we go through the budget in the book too, right? You have to figure out exactly how much money you need. That money needs to be earmarked in your operating account. So that’s your standard account, it’s where your check goes into, it’s where your living expenses come out of, it’s your debit cards are connected to that.
And I want you to spend that thing down to zero. I want you to burn it up. So you determine what that math is that goes in your operating account. And once it meets the budget of the bills every dollar over that has to go into your reserve account.
Now some people call it a savings account, but here’s where they go wrong, Jenny. They’ll create a savings account at the same bank that they have their operating account at. And so guess what happens? We’re a little short in the operating account we just pull from the savings account, right?
A reserve account which I’ve employed in my business and my personal life for 15 years now has made all the difference in whether or not I was able to make moves on investments that really begin to leverage my wealth accumulation, so that reserve account has to be in a separate bank, that reserve account could have no check writing capabilities, it can have no debit card connected to it, and you must go into the bank to get your hands on the money.
So for me I have it in a separate city, so it’s such an annoyance for me to go to the place, right? And it’s in a small bank, they only have four branches, and they close at 5:00 on Friday and they are never open on the weekends. So I make it even that much more difficult to go get my hands on the money, and eventually that begins to accumulate. And once you get that into $100,000, that’s when you can start to make investment moves.
So $50,000 get you out of broke, $100,000 gets you into the ability to start making investments. Nobody should be investing money unless they have $100,000 saved up in their reserve account. That’s going to be controversial. That’s going to freak people out.
Hoff: Yeah, that is controversial, a lot of people are putting the money at least into index funds or the stock market or into real estate, but you’re saying if you don’t have $100,000 in that reserve you need to be just making that money first before you go investing in anything else.
Manero: You’re deep in accumulation mode, you’re stacking and racking cash, you’re not thinking of anything else. Now you know that other people will talk about different strategies on that. I’m not a CPA, I’m not a financial planner. I don’t want to be, don’t care to be, this is my version of how I went from zero to rich. And if other people follow this roadmap it will work for them, but they will get complacency from a lot of people, they will get convinced that they can afford the boat or the nicer car and all that sort of stuff. And they’re just kicking the can down the road.
So Jenny, one last thing, I know that we are under a little bit of a time crunch, but here’s the finisher on money – money takes no prisoners. There is no grey area with money. Everyone pays the piper with money. There will come a point in time in your life and my life and anybody else’s life where you will look back and you will say, “I won, or I lost.” You will never say I did OK unless you’re lying to yourself.
You will say I got the Tuscany and the private jet or I didn’t. That’s the way money plays out. It doesn’t take prisoners. It is a black and white, win or lose formula.
Hoff: Yeah, absolutely. And I wish we could go through some the other things in the book because you have so many great tips on basically how to scale up, how to get more money from your job so you don’t have to start your own company you say, you can get more money from your own job, you can move jobs, create your own personal ATM which would be starting your own company, so go read that book, get all of those ideas in there. I’m going to finish up with some questions that I always ask my guests, one is what are three things somebody listening to this could do today to get them started on making more money?
Manero: OK, I love that question. The first thing someone has to do immediately, tomorrow if not today is they have to go into their boss’s office and ask for a raise. Because here’s what’s going to happen, your boss is going to tell you the truth. He or she is going to say, “Heck no, you suck. You’re not getting a raise. Are you kidding me? You can’t even get here at 9 o’clock on time and you’re always late and you take two hour lunches. No way.” That’s what you need to start to hear.
Now what happens if I’m in business for myself and I do that? I go to my bookkeeper or I go to my Quick Books because I’m a solo entrepreneur if that’s the case with somebody, and you say, “I need a raise.” And you’re Quick Books tells you, “You can’t take a raise.” That’s the first thing you have to do. You have to start getting feedback on how much value are you bringing to the organization or to the marketplace. Can you extract more money from the existing platform?
The second thing is you got to test the platform, because what happens if your boss says, “Geez, you really do a great job, but I can’t give you a raise.” Human resources say only three percent raises per year, right? So, let’s think about that just for a second, let’s say you got five percent raise, and you make $50,000 and because of human resources guidelines you were allowed a five percent raise. You made $2,500 bucks extra, you’re now at $52,500. You did absolutely nothing to move the needle of your net worth. It meant zero and you got to live with it for another year.
So people got to get the truth and then they got to be ready to leave. See, the employer-employee relationship has changed forever, Jenny. It’s never going to be the same ever, ever again. The employer will never hold the noose over the employee’s neck ever again. The employee is now in control. And I hope my readers of the book get that that you are fully in control of the entire destiny; your employer means nothing to you anymore.
You win, you bring value to your employer, you get paid. If they don’t pay you, you leave and go to their competitor and you bring value there and you get paid. If they don’t, you leave, you go to somebody else.
I have a friend, and I talk about her in the book, my friend Andrea, she’s come through Dallas all time. Every time she came through Dallas to see me she was with a new company, and I’d say, “Hey, aren’t you worried about your resume? Aren’t you supposed to like don’t job hop and stuff like that?”
And she said, “Are you kidding me? I make 50 percent, 100 percent more every time I leave these companies. And the new company doesn’t care that I’m leaving, and the new company doesn’t care that I’m leaving, and the new company doesn’t care that I’m leaving.” And now she’s one of the top fashion industry experts in New York City, and nobody ever cared about her job hopping.
Think about that for a second, also from an employee standpoint, Jenny, the number two person at Facebook that no one has ever heard of is worth a billion, right? So you don’t have to be the boss. You can make tons of cash.
Here in Austin, Texas how many people do you know that have made tons of money working for someone else because of these things called options? You don’t have to be the boss to get rich. You just have to figure out how to bring a boatload of value to the situation.
Hoff: Absolutely, so you say people the number one thing they need to go do right now – ask for a raise and assess where they are to see their own value, to see what they need to do to get better?
Manero: Yeah, the number two thing they have to do is they absolutely have to move themselves into accumulation mode. They just simply have to start saying, “I’m on accumulation mode,” and begin to change that lifestyle.
The third thing they have to do is they have to hook up with somebody with the money; they must find somebody who is richer than them and tap into their knowledge. Because what happens is there are just a few small tweaks. I always say and the publisher actually made me take this out of the book, they said it would alienate too many people. Life begins at $150,000; life gets better at $250,000, life gets real good at $500,000. That’s the way the numbers play out.
And if you can make $250,000 you can make $500,000 and if you can make $500,000, you can make a million, if you can make a million you can make 5 million, and I’m a testament of it. But you’ve got to hook up with the people who are already doing it because they give you the little nuances, the little tweaks that are game changers at those certain levels.
So those are the three things they have to do. They have to ask for the raise, they have to put themselves in accumulation mode, and they’ve got to go hook up with the money, who’s got the money?
Hoff: Absolutely, you’re super inspiring in this and you do make it sound easy, and while it’s not easy, it takes a lot of time, it takes a lot of grit it is possible, and I think that’s the most important thing. You say it is possible, you just got to be willing to do the work for it.
Finally our show is called Charged Up, what gets you charged up about constantly striving for wealth?
Manero: So I like to win. I’m a competitive guy. I mean, I don’t know what the right philosophy with letting your children win is. I mean, I’m very involved in my kids’ lives. And every time I see one of the dads carrying their kid’s Lacrosse bag to the practice I want to run out of the current tackle the guy and say, “What the heck are you doing? Make the kid carry the bag.” Right? It drives me crazy. I mean, I whoop my kids’ butts in ping pong and basketball on the sport court. I never want them to win, we would do a swimming thing in the pool, guess what? I’m swimming until I feel like my heart’s going to blow up so that they don’t beat me.
So how do I win? How do I stay interested? It’s in my DNA to try to win. The downside to that is you just don’t know when you pushed it too far, and I’m perfectly frank about that. I mean, I can destroy a friendship and I have in the past just because I was so competitive I wanted to beat the other guy, and I missed the enjoyment along the way. So it is a little bit of a blessing and a curse, but I’ll take my version over most people’s version any day of the week.
Hoff: Absolutely, you got to keep that fire burning and make sure that you’re excited about life and excited about winning in life.
Matt, fantastic conversation, again, I cannot encourage people more to pick up your book. I really enjoyed it myself. I bet I’m going to go over it more in detail and I’m going to start implementing a lot of the suggestions that you have. Thank you so much for joining us and I really enjoyed our talk.
Manero: Jenny, thank you very much. I did too.