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Research Strategy to Saving Money

In: Business and Management

Submitted By rritiu
Words 1099
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Having a research strategy to saving money can be very useful in providing a first step in reaching the goal of financial security. It has been argued that the American society is materialistic and accustomed to instant gratification. Easy lines of credit and lack of proper money management have led many in deep financial straits. The recent high unemployment numbers and the deep recession have contributed greatly to this. However not everyone was affected. One major reason is because some were conscious about saving for a rainy day. In fact “Compared to a year ago, 50 percent more Americans are beefing up their savings account, according to a new survey by Money Management International, Houston” (Ginovsky J., 2009, p.12). Americans are realizing that savings must become a priority. I for one can honestly say that I am one of those Americans. I’m starting to feel the need to start saving more and spend less. My personal situation did changed significantly in the last year and is the driving force behind trying to save more. The fact that my son came into our lives is a wonderful experience that I would never trade for anything in the world. However the reality is that it does add a strain on the budget. Adding to this is the fact that my wife quit her job to stay home and raise our son. Also the decision to go back to school is another contributing factor that stretches the budget even more. On top of all of this within the last year I knew I would loose my job and had to find a new one. I consider myself very lucky to leave one job and the very next day to start a new one, but this only reinforces the idea that we need to save more. After all, luck favors the prepared mind. We need to be creative and thus we will use some good old fashion critical thinking to accomplish our goal. “Critical Thinking is the process of gathering information, analyzing it in different ways, and evaluating it for the purposes of gaining understanding, solving a problem, or making a decision” (Carol Carter, Joyce Bishop, Sarah Kravits, 2007, p. 78). To accomplish our goal to save more we need to first start by collecting information. We need to identify our income sources and everything we spend it on. It is crucial that we be honest with ourselves and we ensure that this data is accurate and detailed otherwise our assumptions will be wrong and the conclusions we reach will be wrong as well. Remember the saying, garbage in garbage out. We will be updating the budget with new information so we can accurately evaluate our current spending habits. Now remember what we said about being creative. Savings should not stop with the budget. If we were to do some research on the subject we would identify other more creative ways to save. While researching newspaper articles, books and journals at the library we would come across other relevant issues such as: tax planning, 401K and 529 plans, wills and trusts, energy efficiency, debt planning, and who knows what else. As we dig deeper we realize that these are all vehicles to saving money. Of course, aside from the library there is also the Internet, talk radio shows, TV programs and even conferences that address this subject. However aside from research or listening to experts we need to put this into perspective to our own situation. We need to start evaluating the information that we have gathered. An important point to make here is that no matter where we get our financial advice one should scrutinize the information obtained. We need to ask ourselves inquisitive questions and probe for weaknesses in the information presented. If the information if overwhelming we need to split it up and use a technique such as divide and conquer to make sense of it. Or if it seems incomprehensible to us we can use lateral thinking or simplifications to help us navigate. There is also the possibility that the information we’ve gathered is false and thus we need to be cautious. We need to put things into perspective. A subtle but very important point is that “Being able to determine the perspectives that underline materials will help you separate biased from unbiased information” (Carol Carter, Joyce Bishop, Sarah Kravits, 2007, p. 82). As we consult the library, Internet, or our financial advisor and use these strategies to evaluate information we can be confident that we will get honest and unprejudiced advise. Once we’re sure we can rely on the information we will continue to the next step. We will make a decision on what options we will implement that will help us save. To do this we will start examining all our given options and even think of new ones. We will look at what affect it will have on both our short and long-term goals, who it will affect and how. We will think critically about our options. In addition we can seek out advice from others we trust and get their perspective on our possible solutions. Only then we have done our due diligence and feel confident to make our decision and run with it. In our effort to define a strategy to save more we have so far identified the circumstances and the driving force behind it. We also defined what type of information is relevant to us, how it should be gathered and where to look for it. Just as important is defining ways to evaluate the information. We have techniques we can apply to understand how others have used financial tools to organize their budgets as well as financial vehicles to save more such as a college savings plan. We can now reach our own conclusions and be confident that they can be applied to our own unique circumstances. We will choose and act on some of the advice given only when we’re confident that it will in fact help us achieve our goal to save more. This strategy defines our plan of action, our vision on how we’re going to achieve our goal. Without one we will be doomed to fail.
References
Carol Carter, Joyce Bishop, Sarah Kravits, (2007). Keys to College Studying: Becoming An Active Thinker (2nd ed.). : Prentice Hall, Inc. Ginovsky, J. (June 2009). Saving grows in popularity. Community Banker, 18, 6. p.12 (1). Retrieved December 19, 2009, from General OneFile via Gale:
http://find.galegroup.com/itx/start.do?prodId=ITOF…...

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