Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Why Certain Things Are Meant To Be

So being in sales, you start to really see many things in a different light, things like human behavior, persistence and success. In terms of success, there's a lot of advice out there that persistence is a key ingredient in success, and I believe it very much is. That being said, it is also the key ingredient in annoyance when on the receiving end...

There's all this focus on persistence when it comes to success whether it be in business or love or anything else with a goal attached. But if there's one thing I realized, persistence alone is not just some magic ingredient you throw into the pot and voila, ze soup she ez done! That's a very naive thought process and one that I myself have been guilty of in the past.

Probably the biggest factor in success is timing. Applied to sales you can have the right product, the right attitude, and the right everything, but if the customer cannot buy for a legitimate reason, then no amount of persistence is going to change that, instead you're just going to poison the prospect if you do persist (also guilty, hehe). Apply this to life and I believe this is really enough proof that some things are meant to be, and by necessity, some things are not...at least for right now.

You can look at it spiritually if you want as well, but in terms of logic this supports that belief if you prefer to look at it that way. Just because you have the right ingredients, the right recipe, and the right oven temperature does not guarantee making a great cake anymore than increasing your odds guarantees success. It also takes that extra element of timing. When I did Judo many years ago, a black belt told me ever since becoming a black belt, it's not his throwing technique that he works on, its his timing...why do I throw, not how do I throw.

That being said, I do not endorse sitting on your ass when the going get's tough and saying "oh well I guess its just not meant to be." Timing is not an excuse for surrender, it's a fundamental truth for peace of mind. Whether something is meant to be or not is not for us decide, but a result of the present circumstances. Our job is to persist within reason, with peace of mind in the truth of "if not now, then later."

Thursday, June 2, 2011

One Year Investment Update

So one year is sometimes all it takes for an investment to blow out any return you could've possibly imagined. On Monday, made the following sales with a 1 year holding period to lock in long term capital gains tax rate...

United Healthcare
Buy: $26   Sell: $49   ROI: 47%

Wellpoint  (WLP)
Buy: $51   Sell: $76   ROI: 33%

Exxon Mobil   (XOM)
Buy: $58   Sell: $80   ROI: 38%

Energen Corp.   (EGN)
Buy: $50   Sell: $60   ROI: 17%

United Health Care and Wellpoint I bought during the whole Obama Care debacle when there was a lot of uncertainty as to how the bill would affect the healthcare companies. These were sort of no-brainer plays as both companies have the creme de la creme of healthcare services including Blue Cross Blue Shield. Just seemed obvious both were going to come out of all the uncertainty as winners still.

Exxon Mobil techinically was a two year holding period total, since my first position was made in 2009. However, when the BP oil spill hit, the whole damn oil industry got slammed in the market as being evil...that's like your neighbor destroying the sidewalk in front of his house and city hall punishing the whole neighborhood for it. I loaded up on more shares at a lower price when the stock fell off a cliff, which in turned lowered my average cost per share when it came back up. Goes to show you, a stock dropping can actually be a good thing if you've done your homework ;o)

Energen was a value play, I saw it as undervalued and decided to sell off because I wanted to increase cash due to better opportunities that are out there right now.