How to get educated and make money without going to college

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A college education just isn’t for everyone. You might already know that it’s not for you, or maybe you’re sitting in your dorm room reading this and feeling that familiar squirm in your gut…either way, rest assured that there are other ways to have the career you want, without suffering through college. There are so many resources online, even on Facebook that can help you find your career or your true calling. It may seem impossible in this world where every man and his dog seem to have a college degree, but let me tell you, it is possible, if you are clever, determined, and hard-working. Here are a couple of important things to remember along the way.

Find your passion

What do you love? What do you enjoy? Once you find what you truly love to do, you will be able to find ways of making money doing it. You may need to be resourceful, for example: if you enjoy thrill-seeking and fast-paced action sports, you might be the kind of person who would enjoy Forex trading. The Forex world is incredibly quick, with the difference between two seconds potentially meaning the difference between ten thousand dollars and nothing. (For more information about Forex and currency trading visit www.knowledgetoaction.com.au) Find what you love, and you’ll love making money doing it.

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Are You a Leader or a Follower? 5 Questions to Ask Yourself

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The world is full of different personalities, each as intricate and detailed as the next. In business, our character traits often define what role we have within a hierarchy. Confident, forward-thinking individuals are drawn to creative, management-type positions, while those who value tradition and direction often find themselves as employees. The role of leader and follower are equally important, for one could not survive without the other. Below you will find five questions that will help you think about which role you naturally gravitate towards.

1. Do you Cave Under Peer Pressure?

Every day it seems like there is some new crazy fad taking over. From diets to fashion trends and drinking games to cosmetic surgery, peer pressure is a driving force in many social phenomena. The business world is no stranger. Whether you are an aspiring entrepreneur or the CEO of a multi-million dollar company, there will always be those who think they know best. A successful leader knows how to take advice on board, but not let it overwhelm or sway them.

2. How do Feel with Attention?

The limelight is certainly no stranger to Ron Bakir, an Australian businessman who started a mobile phone empire and appeared in the television advertisements himself. Could you do this? Though this is an extreme example, the reality is that a leader must be comfortable with speaking publicly and being vulnerable to criticism. Ron Bakir has certainly experienced his fair share of disparagement but has managed to turn his troubles into a success story.

3. Can you Listen Well?

When people talk, listen completely. Most people never listen. These were the wise words from renowned author Ernest Hemingway. When we listen to people, not only do we learn new information, but we see different perspectives, allowing us to make informed and effective decisions. Being a leader does not involve talking over the top others or asserting authority at all times. Instead, respecting and listening to others will take you a long way.

4. Do you Think and Travel Outside the Box?

It’s no coincidence that some of the planet’s most successful business people are creative, innovative thinkers. Richard Branson, Steve Jobs and Walt Disney all saw past their challenges and restrictions, managing to forge their own unique paths to success. An effective leader has the ability to attract and maintain followers through their clear, pioneering vision. Do you feel content to follow tradition or do you want to set trends?

5. Are you Confident in your Abilities?

Afraid of being perceived as arrogant, wanting to be friends with everyone and an inability to see ourselves as skilled individuals; these are just some of the reasons why many of us shy away from the concept of self-promotion. Self-belief, however, is a powerful asset that when used positively, can propel you to great heights and inspire others at the same time.

How did you go? What did you conclude? Are you a natural leader or follower? Share your results and thoughts by commenting below.

The 5 Different Faces of Entrepreneurs

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Creating a sustainable, profitable business as an entrepreneur is an extremely challenging feat. Some individuals, however, manage to go all the way to the top and are now some of the world’s wealthiest people. While all entrepreneurs share basic characteristics such as hard-working, innovative and persistent, more often than not they will be labelled or pigeonholed in a certain way. Below you will find just five of the different ways entrepreneurs are perceived.

1. The Visionary

This is probably the entrepreneur that you are used to hearing and reading about. They are often larger than life, a beacon to others who only dream of making it. They are the face of their companies and are very gifted at clearly articulating and conveying their goals, thereby getting their entire team of employees and customers on board. Think of Richard Branson and Mark Zuckerberg.

2. The Troublemaker

While the word troublemaker is rather harsh, certain individuals in the business world have certainly garnered a reputation for being demanding and lacking people skills. Steve Jobs is a prime example of this; many colourful words have been used to describe his personality and there are plenty of stories regarding his unconventional management style.

3. The Optimist

These are the figures that take defeat in their stride and refuse to give up. They are always looking to the future and trying to decide what business venture they should try next. Australian businessman Ron Bakir experienced personal and legal trouble that left him without much of his fortune. A few years later he managed to reinvent himself and is now the CEO of a very successful property development company.

4. The Mentor

This type of entrepreneur is regarded as being gentle, nurturing and positive. They will often be seen engaging in motivational or charitable activities. Tony Robbins has built an entire empire on the motivational speaking and mentoring movement but don’t forget that he is also a savvy businessman who found his niche in the marketplace and played to his strengths.

5. The Philanthropist

At some point in a successful entrepreneur’s career, they start to think less about profits and more about giving back to the world. Bill Gates and his wife Melinda are some of the world’s most famous humanitarians, donating large amounts of money through their foundation. Another well-known philanthropist is of course Oprah Winfrey, who has worked tirelessly to improve the quality of education for women and children through her foundation.

In reality, entrepreneurs are three dimensional people with virtues and faults. In fact, most individuals in the business world will be a visionary, dictator, optimist, mentor and philanthropist rolled into one. Media coverage and PR spin are often the reasons why we receive a particular view or opinion of someone.

Which figure do you identify most with? Was it Ron Bakir’s story of triumph against the odds that struck a chord? Or is it Richard Branson’s brand of innovative fun that appeals to you? Whatever your opinion, let us know by commenting in the box below.

Hire an MBA by the hour

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Tired of getting gouged by consulting firms? BusinessWeek recently profiled a new site called Skillbridge where you can engage consultants by the hour or on a flat fee basis for prices that are much more reasonable than firms like Bain or McKinsey. Or, you can rent out a qualified candidate as opposed to hiring a new employee.

A growing number of companies are using freelance MBAs to access the same brain power they might find at a top-tier consulting firm. The demand has given rise to online marketplaces that are a cross between executive search agencies and freelance job sites—where the featured contractors are skilled at financial modeling, competitive analysis, and marketing.

The site claims that every consultant is screened and has a minimum of two years’ experience. For small companies and startups, this looks like a nice option to have.

It also offers a nice career option for consultants who are sick of the long hours and endless travel.

Nonfarm payroll employment rose by 204,000 in October

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The October jobs report was surprisingly strong in light of the government shutdown inflicted on the American economy.

Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 204,000 in October, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 7.3 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment increased in leisure and hospitality, retail trade, professional and technical services, manufacturing, and health care.

The key issue with these numbers remains the size of the workforce. It remains to be seen how accurately these government surveys are in light of new trends where people work at home. Look at these numbers:

While the economy has been miserable for small business, and many larger ones as well, the ranks of the self-employed have been growing. According to research by Economic Modeling Specialists International, the number of people who primarily work on their own has swelled by 1.3 million since 2001 to 10.6 million, a 14% increase.

How does this factor into the unemployment trends? Nobody seems to be talking about this when the jobs numbers come out.