How to get rich from your 9 to 5 job
Are you bound to your day job but dreaming of riches beyond your wildest imagination? Yeah, I am too. Unfortunately, many Canadians are barely making ends meet, with very little left over to save, let alone invest. Depressing, eh? I thought so too, until I stumbled across a fascinating article from Inc. Magazine outlining the sources of wealth for America’s top 400 richest people. According to the article, in the United States, only 8.6% of these wealthiest citizens acquired their riches via their job, while partnerships and corporations accounted for 19.9% and capital gains accounted for whopping 45.8%. The other two sources of wealth, interest at 6.6% and dividends at 13%, seem to be income generated from the already-acquired fortune, not the cause of the fortune itself.
What does this mean for the average 9-5’er who wants to join the 1% while keeping their day job?
It means that there are three ways to accumulate a lot of money reasonably fast while on the job through: wages and salaries, corporations and partnerships, and capital gains—all requiring a combination of self-investment, risk, luck, and career strategy.
How to get rich from: your wage or salary
The top 100 highest-paid CEOs in Canada now make, on average, $9.2 million—more than 190 times the average Canadian income of $47,358. So if you truly love the structure and “security” of a corporate gig, the only way to become truly wealthy as a direct result of said gig is to either take on a commissioned sales job with huge upside potential, or to climb the ladder until you get to senior management. The latter in particular requires a lot of professional and personal development, and you’ll probably have to job hop to acquire the positions and skill sets needed to get you to the top.
How to get rich from: corporations and partnerships
Start a business and dedicate yourself to growing it. With enough scale, it can turn into a multi-employee company, of which you are the leader. If you’re risk adverse, consider a joint venture with a savvy, trustworthy business partner.
How to get rich from: capital gains from your day job
How does one become wealthy off of capital gains from their day job? I know of a couple of people who joined the right start up tech firm at the right time. The companies had not yet gone public, and in order to attract the best people, they offered generous stock options. As soon as the company IPO’d, the employees’ stock options turned into real wealth. Of course, no one can predict which startups will explode and which ones will fail, so ask the right questions, and choose to work for a company whose products and leadership are something you truly believe in.
There are many people who focus on building wealth outside of their day jobs, but this requires time and energy over and above what they’re already giving to their main source of employment. For those who want to leverage their day gig into substantial wealth, it is possible, but it will still require you to step outside of your comfort zone.