Are You In Charge of Your Retirement?

Key Takeaways

  • Taking control of your investments can be a factor in how successful you are in reaching your financial goals for retirement.
  • A recent Yahoo Finance article, “Be the CEO of Your Retirement,” speaks to the idea that CEOs tend to be more active than passive about their investments.
  • There are five important things you can do to be the CEO of your own retirement.

In the military, you always know who’s in charge and who’s in control. There’s a chain of command that everyone understands, there are orders to follow, and strict accountability for following those orders. It makes things clear because the “who, what, when, where, and why” are laid out for you.

Our daily civilian lives, however, don’t usually have this kind of clarity – and even if we know who’s supposed to be in charge, we often violate this for a variety of reasons: maybe it’s easier to delegate to someone else, maybe we’re short on time, maybe the subject is just something we’re not interested in, and so on.

But there’s a recent article in Yahoo Finance, “Be the CEO of Your Retirement,” which points out that we may not want to be so passive when it comes to our retirement savings.

CEOs of businesses are focused on creating and maintaining the success of their companies. They do so not just through hard work and intelligence, but by actively understanding the inner workings of their businesses, being aware of all aspects of their industries, and knowing how to adapt as technologies and society change. In other words, they’re not passive by any means.

This tends to translate to how CEOs handle their investments: they focus on creating and maintaining the success of their retirement. They are active participants, and there are five commonalities they share.

First, they set performance goals. This makes sense; results don’t simply materialize, and we can’t reach a goal if we haven’t set a goal. What are your investments and your cash flow supposed to do over a period of time? Set your goals for retirement, and check in to see if you’re making progress toward them.

Second, they question everything. CEOs need a lot of information in order to make good decisions for their companies. Similarly, you need to be well-informed when it comes to your retirement. Don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as you need to – it’ll help you know you’re on the right track.

Third, they’re willing to adapt. There’s constant change in the economy and the stock market. You have to adapt your plan relative to what’s happening in the financial world, but also according to how close you are to retirement, and as other life events occur. For instance, an aggressive investment strategy that worked for you in your 30s might be too much of a risk as you get closer to retirement.

Fourth, they take this seriously. You have one life to live and you’ve got a certain amount of money. Your money has to support you through your retirement, so it’s something to devote a good amount of attention to.

Finally, they look at the big picture. It’s easy to get so involved in the details of life in the short-term, that we can miss where we’re going in the long-term. Take the time to examine the issues that will affect you in the future: estate planning, insurance, and health care, for instance.

As the article points out, you’re ultimately in charge of your retirement, even when you’re seeking the advice of a financial professional. Being both in charge and in control of the details is a very difficult thing to do. Take these cues from CEOs and stay in charge, while handing over the control, and be the CEO of your retirement. Until next time, enjoy.


Gary Klaben is in our Glenview, IL office and serves our clients who are now located all over the country. He has over 30 years of experience and is the author of Changing the Conversation, Wealth of Everything and co-author of The Business BattlefieldWhether advising his clients, mentoring his team, or coaching entrepreneurs, he is always simplifying complexity and motivating others to take the next action that’s right for them.

Learn more about TransformingWealth™ , our proprietary approach designed to get your arms around the big picture, so you can make informed financial decisions. Ask Gary about Coyle’s TransformingWealth Preview Meeting and schedule a complimentary consultation and start living the Good Life Managed Well™.
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All information is from sources deemed reliable, but no warranty is made to its accuracy or completeness.   This material is being provided for informational or educational purposes only, and does not take into account the investment objectives or financial situation of any client or prospective client.  The information is not intended as investment advice, and is not a recommendation to buy, sell, or invest in any particular investment or market segment.  Those seeking information regarding their particular investment needs should contact a financial professional.  Coyle, our employees, or our clients, may or may not be invested in any individual securities or market segments discussed in this material.  The opinions expressed were current as of the date of posting, but are subject to change without notice due to market, political, or economic conditions.

Copyright © 2019 Coyle Financial Counsel.  All rights reserved.


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