Author Topic: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?  (Read 3546 times)

The Money Monk

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Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« on: April 29, 2017, 02:03:58 AM »
I have a thought experiment I have been working on and I figured I would see what the mustachian community thinks. It is generally about the quickest MOST RELIABLE way to 6 figures. It's kind of complicated but might be fun if you like thought experiments.

So here is the hypothetical situation: You have 2 groups of 100 people, and you have to choose just one career/education path for each group. You would 'win' by getting the most people in each group to earn over $75k a year within 6 years.

BUT you don't get extra points for income beyond that. So if you tell one group to go be actors, one person might end up making millions, but most won't make shit. So you would probably lose out to somebody who made their group all be engineers, because at least a couple would be making $75k a year.

Group 1 all have generic college degrees (psychology, criminology, political science, business etc) but nothing specialized or STEM

Group 2 just have high school diplomas.

Assumptions:
All people in both groups are between 25 and 40 years old
intelligence and money is not an issue - assume both groups contain people who are mentally capable of any program, and can pay for it, As long as they are accepted into it - so they have to meet any prerequisites.

You get ONE plan for each group of 100 people. So what do you tell each group to do that will get the MOST number of people in that group to be earning $75k within 5 years?






deborah

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2017, 04:12:27 AM »
Farriers

Villanelle

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2017, 05:13:18 AM »
With zero research (when, in reality, the first thing I'd do would be research), I'd tell group B to be plumbers or electricians.

For group A, assuming that time in additional schooling counts against the 6 years (ruling out things like plastic surgeon)  air traffic controller (again, no research).  (Actually, I might have group B be ATCs as well.  I believe it only requires an associates degree, though I have no idea what the actual hiring picture looks like.)

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2017, 05:29:59 AM »
Business owners, both groups.

MarioMario

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2017, 10:00:27 AM »
I would have them start an electrical, hvac, plumbing company together!

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The Money Monk

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2017, 10:41:35 PM »
With zero research (when, in reality, the first thing I'd do would be research), I'd tell group B to be plumbers or electricians.

For group A, assuming that time in additional schooling counts against the 6 years (ruling out things like plastic surgeon)  air traffic controller (again, no research).  (Actually, I might have group B be ATCs as well.  I believe it only requires an associates degree, though I have no idea what the actual hiring picture looks like.)

Does a significant percentage of plumbers or electricians really make over $75k a year? I know they can make over 50, but without being the owner, I'm not sure they would. So being the owner is obviously an option, but might not be able to make it happen in the first 5 years after initially becoming a plumber/electrician.

The ATC idea is interesting, hadn't thought of that.

The Money Monk

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2017, 10:58:16 PM »
Business owners, both groups.

I'm not sure that high of a percentage of people would really be making $75k after 5 or 6 years. Many businesses fail. Most actually. And getting funding is a big hurdle as well.

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2017, 11:09:51 PM »
Yes, lots of businesses fail. But enough succeed -and at the goal income- that this is what I would propose in the experiment. (I would also encourage a smart business, with a business plan -not an ad hoc, part-time, babysit-one-neighbour-kid business.)

Business allows flexibility, agency, cost control, determination (to some extent) of profit margin, etc. I'm not a huge fan of relying on someone else to employ me in order to get any income at all, so would be reluctant to seek an employment path. And if one idea fails, a person prepped to own a business will move on to another.

deborah

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #8 on: April 29, 2017, 11:18:23 PM »
No-one took my comment seriously. Farriers are very, very well paid because there are so few of them, and there are any number of horses around. Seriously, they get paid a lot more than even the other trades.

Jaayse

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2017, 12:09:35 AM »
It is an interesting thought, and I think I can make it so every single one makes over 75K, but they would have to be willing to do difficult work.

For those who have college, Group A, they can join the military as an Officer.  I did with a non-STEM degree, and it is guaranteed that after 4 years they will be an O-3 and you can look up their pay.

For those who are high school educated, Group B, they can work at an oil platform.  The long hours, danger, and separation from family guarantee higher pay and I've heard of very high incomes. 

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Paul der Krake

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2017, 02:59:46 PM »
Group 2: prostitution.

deborah

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2017, 03:03:57 PM »
Group 2: prostitution.
Other things pay more. And don't wear out your body as quickly. There is also the problem with nasty customers.

marty998

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2017, 03:06:54 PM »
Group 2: prostitution.

So incredibly classist. Surely Group 1 could have a go at being escorts as well?

The oldest profession is open to all applicants.

ChpBstrd

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2017, 05:30:18 PM »
To me, the thought experiment illustrates how it's a damn good thing we aren't assigned jobs at birth. Maybe 1 out of those 1,000 people would be assigned the job they are best at. If all 1,000 people were homogenous, and good at, say, medicine, their society would starve for lack of farmers. So it's a damn good thing we aren't homogenous either.

The Money Monk

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #15 on: May 01, 2017, 12:04:39 AM »
No-one took my comment seriously. Farriers are very, very well paid because there are so few of them, and there are any number of horses around. Seriously, they get paid a lot more than even the other trades.

I looked it up when you posted it, apparently the average is like $90k. Pretty impressive. Though not sure what the average is for 5 years in after starting with no experience.  I imagine many of those included in the average have been doing it for many years and built up a good business.

I don't know anything about farriers other than what they are. Any idea how much natural skill factors in? In other words, is it something anybody could get competent at after a while, or does it take an element of finesse and talent like being an artist, that not everybody can necessarily get good at?


Definitely a good, interesting answer. Something I never would have thought of.

The Money Monk

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #16 on: May 01, 2017, 12:05:47 AM »
Group 2: prostitution.

Do male prostitutes make all that much?


The Money Monk

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #17 on: May 01, 2017, 12:11:48 AM »
Yes, lots of businesses fail. But enough succeed -and at the goal income- that this is what I would propose in the experiment. (I would also encourage a smart business, with a business plan -not an ad hoc, part-time, babysit-one-neighbour-kid business.)

Business allows flexibility, agency, cost control, determination (to some extent) of profit margin, etc. I'm not a huge fan of relying on someone else to employ me in order to get any income at all, so would be reluctant to seek an employment path. And if one idea fails, a person prepped to own a business will move on to another.

Sure, but the idea is to figure out ONE solution that will work for the most amount of people. You add the qualification of a person "prepped to own a business". I don't think most people ARE prepped to own a business. I am also personally reluctant to seek an employment path (hence why I work for myself), but the experiment is not to figure out what would work for me or you, but to come up with the best "one size fits all" 5-6 year path to $75k that you can. I'm not sure that 'starting a business' is it, for a random group of people.

And also, while you aren't necessarily wrong, just saying "start a smart business" is too vague to be actionable. The idea of the experiment is to be able to give the people in each group a specific 5-6 year action plan.

deborah

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #18 on: May 01, 2017, 12:17:38 AM »
No-one took my comment seriously. Farriers are very, very well paid because there are so few of them, and there are any number of horses around. Seriously, they get paid a lot more than even the other trades.

I looked it up when you posted it, apparently the average is like $90k. Pretty impressive. Though not sure what the average is for 5 years in after starting with no experience.  I imagine many of those included in the average have been doing it for many years and built up a good business.

I don't know anything about farriers other than what they are. Any idea how much natural skill factors in? In other words, is it something anybody could get competent at after a while, or does it take an element of finesse and talent like being an artist, that not everybody can necessarily get good at?


Definitely a good, interesting answer. Something I never would have thought of.
I have a cousin who is a farrier. He wanted to be a jockey (as a side gig), so he's a weed (remember that you have to be under a certain weight to be a jockey). I think you have to love horses. His kids are all farriers too. I don't think you get paid much more over time as a trades person, because after 5 or 7 years, you are pretty good. Only if you become a really good business person do you really earn more.

The Money Monk

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #19 on: May 01, 2017, 12:29:33 AM »
No-one took my comment seriously. Farriers are very, very well paid because there are so few of them, and there are any number of horses around. Seriously, they get paid a lot more than even the other trades.

I looked it up when you posted it, apparently the average is like $90k. Pretty impressive. Though not sure what the average is for 5 years in after starting with no experience.  I imagine many of those included in the average have been doing it for many years and built up a good business.

I don't know anything about farriers other than what they are. Any idea how much natural skill factors in? In other words, is it something anybody could get competent at after a while, or does it take an element of finesse and talent like being an artist, that not everybody can necessarily get good at?


Definitely a good, interesting answer. Something I never would have thought of.
I have a cousin who is a farrier. He wanted to be a jockey (as a side gig), so he's a weed (remember that you have to be under a certain weight to be a jockey). I think you have to love horses. His kids are all farriers too. I don't think you get paid much more over time as a trades person, because after 5 or 7 years, you are pretty good. Only if you become a really good business person do you really earn more.

yeah I was imagining that increased money over time would come mostly from building up your business and pool of trusting clients.

Definitely an interesting answer to the thought experiment. That's why I made this post, thanks!

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #20 on: May 01, 2017, 12:32:30 AM »
Sure, but the idea is to figure out ONE solution that will work for the most amount of people. You add the qualification of a person "prepped to own a business". I don't think most people ARE prepped to own a business. I am also personally reluctant to seek an employment path (hence why I work for myself), but the experiment is not to figure out what would work for me or you, but to come up with the best "one size fits all" 5-6 year path to $75k that you can. I'm not sure that 'starting a business' is it, for a random group of people.

And also, while you aren't necessarily wrong, just saying "start a smart business" is too vague to be actionable. The idea of the experiment is to be able to give the people in each group a specific 5-6 year action plan.

I view entrepreneurship as a path in and of itself, much like becoming a sex trade worker or farrier or plumber. It demands a certain skill set, yes, but so does any path. A sex trade worker has copious options -street work, escort, massage parlour, etc- but we wouldn't narrow it down that far to call it actionable, would we?

And most people aren't prepped to become engineers, farriers, etc, either until after they've taken certain steps. I think business ownership is only the same.

I'm okay with you feeling it's too vague, etc, but I stand by it, and I assume I'm just not communicating my concept well enough.

I don't think it matters as much what type of business a person opts to own, the key is to develop the skills of business ownership, which I view as a trade/profession in and of itself. It's highly actionable, and one would prepare for it much in the same way they would prepare to become a farrier or engineer: learn, study, apprentice, practice, build a reputation, network, etc.

I think one of the great disservices we do to each other these days is not teach business ownership. For a long time, almost everyone was a business owner. They developed those skills, and many achieved mind-blowing amounts within their lifetime (not so much cash, as cash hasn't always been the currency, but to transform land, build, feed multiple people right out of the land, etc, that's some stunning achievement, and I believe the capacity is transferable if we don't dumb each other down by tricking each other into employment).

The Money Monk

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #21 on: May 01, 2017, 01:41:55 AM »

I view entrepreneurship as a path in and of itself, much like becoming a sex trade worker or farrier or plumber. It demands a certain skill set, yes, but so does any path. A sex trade worker has copious options -street work, escort, massage parlour, etc- but we wouldn't narrow it down that far to call it actionable, would we?

I get what you mean, but something like "sex worker" or "prostitute" as vague as it is, is still much more narrow than "a business".



And most people aren't prepped to become engineers, farriers, etc, either until after they've taken certain steps. I think business ownership is only the same.


I agree to some extent, but you haven't even narrowed it down to a field. The point of the thought experiment is for all 100 people in the group to be doing the same thing. So 100 people all starting different kinds of businesses doesn't stay within the confines of the though experiment. Saying "start a business" is only slightly more specific than saying "get a job".

The issue here is we are sort of talking past each other because you aren't thinking within the confines of this hypothetical situation I have devised for the thought experiment. What you are saying is correct when it comes to life, but not necessarily when it comes to this hypothetical contest, because it is very specific.

Owning an engineering business is usually going to be superior than simply being employed as an engineer, but since that is true of almost any field/industry, all you are really saying is '"start a business in your field instead of just working in that field". I think that is great advice, but the purpose of this thought experiment is to find out what fields are most likely to get 100 random people to $75k a year within 5-6 years.  My thoughts are that when you add in the hurdles to business ownership (like fundraising, or being knowledgeable enough in the field to not just work in it, but actually lead the business) I think you wouldn't start beating out simple employment in that field until after the 5-6 year mark. So for the sake of this hypothetical contest, earnings after 6 year mark are meaningless, even if they are $200k a year.


I'm okay with you feeling it's too vague, etc, but I stand by it, and I assume I'm just not communicating my concept well enough.

Again, I agree with you in principle. when I say too vague I mean for the thought experiment. If you were giving the advice to the groups as part of a contest, what kind of business would you make them start, that you think would get the most number of people to $75k a year (profit) within 5-6 years?

Telling the groups to simply start a business is too vague for the sake of the contest, even if its true when it just comes to real life.


I don't think it matters as much what type of business a person opts to own, the key is to develop the skills of business ownership, which I view as a trade/profession in and of itself. It's highly actionable, and one would prepare for it much in the same way they would prepare to become a farrier or engineer: learn, study, apprentice, practice, build a reputation, network, etc.

Once more, you aren't wrong, but its just outside the scope of the thought experiment. In this hypothetical contest you have to at least tell them what kind of business to start.


« Last Edit: May 01, 2017, 01:47:06 AM by The Money Monk »

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #22 on: May 01, 2017, 02:52:47 AM »
Okay, I get it... I genuinely hadn't picked up that you were asking after a more specific daily activity, and do genuinely see "business ownership" as a field/career in its own right. I don't know any business owners (personally) who did only one type of business. They/we each did multiple, e.g., any four or more of: restaurant owner, real estate flipper, landlord, shop owner, nanny service owner, etc. The transferable piece was only "businessperson."

However, if I were to pick a different trade, I would say landlord, realtor, real estate flipper, ESL teacher in a foreign country (whichever is paying the highest at the time), or oil field worker. I've seen people in both Groups A and B -whichever their personal interests, general aptitudes, etc- do well financially in any one of those. Several might require a geographical move as the biggest step.

(Then another question could develop: Which job does each net/save the most in? Then I would say the first four of those, and not so much the fifth.)

deborah

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #23 on: May 01, 2017, 02:59:39 AM »
If this was more than a thought experiment, I would go looking for niche jobs, that are thought to be end-of-life (so aren't taking no enough people to sustain them) but actually have a future.

A farrier is an interesting one that exemplifies what I am talking about. Horses were no longer being used to drive the milk cart, and all the jobs that horses were doing, so farriers became a dying trade, and weren't encouraged (and let's face it, with the working horses going, there was probably a glut of farriers right then).  So it became very difficult to get an apprenticeship. But horses were always going to be around - for fun and for gambling. So becoming a farrier when he did meant that my cousin was getting into a niche area which had lower numbers of people in it than it should have had, as there had been so few apprentices that all the farriers were working even after they were really too old to do it.

When he was young (less than five years in the trade), he went on a two week holiday to another city, and on the second day, went to the local racecourse, to meet a friend for lunch. By the time he had arrived at the meeting place, he had two weeks of work lined up at that racecourse because there were so few farriers at the time.

Lots of people try to be at the technological cutting edge - not at the end-of-life things, because they are not cool. Web developers are such a job. They get overrun with bright young things who all are dead keen to do something so cool. At first (before everyone has heard about the latest cool job) they get paid a lot, but after a while there are too many people doing that work, so the renumeration goes down. This has happened with Web Developers.

Proud Foot

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #24 on: May 01, 2017, 03:25:12 PM »
I have a thought experiment I have been working on and I figured I would see what the mustachian community thinks. It is generally about the quickest MOST RELIABLE way to 6 figures. It's kind of complicated but might be fun if you like thought experiments.

So here is the hypothetical situation: You have 2 groups of 100 people, and you have to choose just one career/education path for each group. You would 'win' by getting the most people in each group to earn over $75k a year within 6 years.

BUT you don't get extra points for income beyond that. So if you tell one group to go be actors, one person might end up making millions, but most won't make shit. So you would probably lose out to somebody who made their group all be engineers, because at least a couple would be making $75k a year.

Group 1 all have generic college degrees (psychology, criminology, political science, business etc) but nothing specialized or STEM

Group 2 just have high school diplomas.

Assumptions:
All people in both groups are between 25 and 40 years old
intelligence and money is not an issue - assume both groups contain people who are mentally capable of any program, and can pay for it, As long as they are accepted into it - so they have to meet any prerequisites.

You get ONE plan for each group of 100 people. So what do you tell each group to do that will get the MOST number of people in that group to be earning $75k within 5 years?

If I were to assume they had to work for someone else I would try to go the sales route for either group.  Maybe not the most reliable but highly dependent upon your ability and not much needed education wise (to do the job, getting the job may be different)

RichMoose

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Re: Income thought experiment - What's your solution?
« Reply #25 on: May 01, 2017, 05:12:05 PM »
Group 2: Train them to be heavy equipment operators.

Excavator, asphalt paver, bulldozer operators can easily break six figures, especially if they own the equipment they operate.

I've heard from paving crews that a good paver operator can earn $10,000+ a month.