Thursday, January 31, 2013

RS-2 A Billion Dollar Bet

As I listened to the podcast by Planet Money about the Herbalife company and the possibility that it was a pyramid scheme I began to think.  Herbalife seems like a very successful company due to the fact that they have a good stock and their annual numbers always seem well above the average.  What is not to like about this company if you are looking got invest in it?  You would assume that if this company, Herbalife, is on the New York Stock Exchange that it is a legitimate company especially after hearing that it has been around for thirty years.

And if this company really is a pyramid scheme, how have they gotten away with this for such a long time.  They could have just recently been starting the pyramid scheme because their business is on the downfall or they have been this way from the start.  I personally have never heard of the product so I think it seems very strange that they have such high income with very little advertisement.  Unless it is a popular product in another country this is just very hard for me to believe that what Herbalife is doing is  actual and not a pyramid scheme.  This wouldn't even be a conversation topic if people had actually heard of the product.  But in reality Ive never seen or heard abou the product so I believe Bill Ackman is right with his claim.

The one thing I do not understand is that the short bidding on this company. What does it entail? and how do you do it?

In all honesty I would not doubt that other companies are doing the exact same.  Last year my roommate and few other kids on the floor were involved in a company that seemed to have the same setup as Herbalife.  The company was called Send out Cards,  the owner was a graduate from Sacred Heart if I remember correctly.  But the people would earn commission for everyone they recruited.  It seemed like nobody made any money compared to the top guy, who was a millionaire while my roommate was lucky to make a few bucks here and there after buying a membership that allowed you to do certain other tasks that eventually never panned out to anything.  It just didn't seem right that the guy at the top made profit off of every sale while my roommate was only profiting by selling a card to someone personally.

To me this all just does not seem right and by Ackman doing what he did made the population realize that investing in this company will eventually lead to you you personally losing all your money.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

EC-203 RS1

 David Dobbs wrote an article called How To Be a Genius: It really is 99 percent sweat, to prove to people that you’re average Joe can become just as talented as someone born with a special talent. His article states that being a genius takes time and effort, he talks about what characteristics will help you rise above the others in your field, and why hard work can either make or break you.

   Dobbs clearly states throughout the article that to become a genius you have to put in the time and effort, blood, sweat and tears.  Nothing in life comes easy, especially to become masterful at something.  Dobbs claims being a genius is not something you are born with, its something that is developed through time.  In his article Dobbs states that "scholars of elite performance to speak of a 10-year rule: it seems you have to put in at least a decade of focused work to master something and bring greatness within reach."  Just use Tiger Woods as an example, he was born with a talent to golf but he did not get where he is today without hard work and practice.  Tiger was recognized as a premier golfer at a very young age and continued to impress with his progressively increasing talent. Even today after all he went through with his ex wife, he has pushed through and is still an elite golfer with tremendous work ethic that will carry him to many more championships.  To develop such talents you need to hold certain traits that can aid you to your success.

   To become an elite in your field of expertise you need other characteristics to help aid in the development of your field so you can rise above the others.  The obvious answer is hard work.  Without the effort you put in you would get nowhere. You need to be dedicated to pursuing your goals. Set the bar high and do not give up when you are put down, strive on through.  Another characteristic you may need is to become a good listener; reason being is because to learn everything you need to know on your way to the top is to get mentors.  The example Dobbs uses is "music students that attended New Yorks elite Julliard School compared to those who attended other schools.  The students who attended Julliard received one on one relationships with mentors who prepared them for challenges they would face after their studies ended." The other students who attended other schools lacked the one on one attention from mentors and faded off the map because they never were taught to deal with challenges they were to face after school. This clearly shows me that to get to the top you have to allow the people around you to teach you things that they have learned through their years of practice. Hard work requires a lot mentally and physically and can can make or break you.

    Hard work can encourage you or it can overwhelm you. To Bill Gates, Tiger Woods, Babe Ruth and The Beatles hard work encouraged them to keep going and become the best they could be at their personal fields.  They never gave up and when they found themselves stuck in an obstacle they would push through and persevere. All of the people I listed above are where they are now because they took their talents and pushed themselves to the limit. They never quit and they pushed themselves because they knew with their hard work they would be at the top of their game.  Unfortunately for some hard work overwhelmed them and caused them to fall off. They may have had the talent to become something but they did not have what it took to put it to good use.  A perfect example for this would be the 2012 Boston Red Sox.  If you look at the team on paper they have a very talented team and if you look at their record they look as if they are a very below average team.  The team has talent but they aren’t putting in the hard work needed to become the team they should be.  An example is the Red Sox pitching staff last year; they were eating chicken and drinking beer in the clubhouse.  They did not treat themselves well enough to perform to the fullest.  In life it comes down to who wants it and who doesn’t.

   Becoming a Genius takes a lot out of you, but it is rewarding in the end.  You need to be willing to do whatever it takes to perform at your absolute best.  Dobbs gave us characteristics that you need to aid yourself in rising to the top, he proved that hard work can either encourage you or overwhelm you, and he stated that being a genius takes time and effort.


    As I getting more and more used to being a college student, I have notices several life changes I have gone through.  They may not be anything drastic but none the less the changes I have made in my were necessary to be a college student here at Sacred Heart.  I have developed skills where I can live on my own and take the initiative to get things done without having someone there to tell you what to do.  And if you cant handle your work and your social life you will most likely not survive college. You learn to manage your time, you learn to open yourself up socially because for the most part people go into college their freshman year not knowing many people or in my case not knowing anyone.  As time goes by your skills get better and better. But as I stated in my original post you cannot master anything until you have experience with it.  If you look at the seniors at this school you can tell they are more mature, they are independent people ready to enter the real world of full time jobs and moving out of your home into an apartment or a small house.  Your life changes drastically in the four short years you are here at school, and you dont have a lot of time to adjust to being independent, which is such a major component to your life once you graduate.  

-Pat Plant