At a Career Crossroads

Matthew has a real estate license, and he planned to start working real estate while he was in school. He recently applied for a management position and was offered the job. Which path should he choose now?

QUESTION: Matthew in El Paso is at a career crossroads. He has a real estate license, and he planned to start working real estate while he was in school. However, he recently applied for a management position and was offered the job. It pays $60,000 a year with a $10,000 bonus plan. Which path should he choose now?

ANSWER: That is a really good job offer—not a bad job offer at all. Income-wise, it’s the best job of your life. I guess the question is, does this take you where you want to go, or do you want to use it to get you where you want to go? Do you want to be running this thing 10 years from now? That’s question one.

What do you want to spend your life doing regardless of what you get paid? You’re still comparing what you’re giving up for what you’re getting, and I’m still trying to find out what you want to do with your life other than exchange some of your time for some money. What is it that when you get to the end of your life, you go, “I’m glad I did this with my life”? If this is way outside of that and this is the kind of thing where you’re saying, “Basically, about 60–80% of the time, I’m going to be hating this but it’s really good money, so I’m taking it,” then don’t take it. If you’re going to say, “Sixty to eighty percent of the time, I’m going to be loving it, it’s going to be strenuous because of the hours, it’s going to be strenuous because sometimes I take it home with me, and it’s going to be strenuous because I’m also in school,” well, nothing comes without strain, baby. Roll up your sleeves, and let’s get with it. Take the job. But if this is something you’re just doing because the money’s there and you really are kind of pretty much dreading the whole picture, don’t do it. It’ll be old at the end of the first week.

Your plan that you have is not a bad plan. There’s no reason to be unhappy with your plan. Your family’s being fed. You’re taking very specific steps to go do something that you love. You’re gathering your education in the process. There’s a bunch about that plan that is a good plan. The only thing is that it’s short is $60,000 a year. That’s the only thing lacking in your plan. That’s what makes me wonder if you’re only taking the call center deal for the money. There’s nothing wrong with that for a short period of time because it takes you to where you want to go, but if you’re going to hate every minute of it or the vast majority of the minutes, don’t do it. Work your plan. Your family’s not starving to death. But if it kind of fits in your overall goals and you want to try it and you’re not sure it’s for life but for a while it’s really good money and we’re willing to put the strain down and finish the education and park the real estate license, come back to the real estate license a little bit later in life or at a different thing, that’s fine.

Don’t take a job you hate and wake up 10 years later still working it just because there’s money there. You don’t have to in your situation. If you were broke and unemployed, then you take this job because your first goal is feed your family. But your family’s fed by the military and your wife. You don’t have to worry about that. You’ve got a plan.

I’m really proud of you for praying and looking at it and for thinking it through and using wisdom. I think you’re going to make the right decision. That’s my input around that issue.

Jump-Start Your Goals!

Jump-Start Your Goals!

Get our 8-Day JUMP START series and weekly newsletter that are packed with articles and tools to help you win with money.

Reach Your Money Goals

Reach Your Money Goals

Start with a budget. Join the millions already budgeting with EveryDollar!

Create My (FREE) Budget

Thank You!

Your 8-Day Jump Start is on its way to !