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Hire A Business Manager

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A few weekends ago, I was listening to Marketplace Money when they ran an interview of Scrubs star Donald Faison. Faison got his big break with the movie Clueless and then followed that up with Scrubs. The entire piece was about him making bad money decisions and then turning it around. He bought a $20,000 car with the $12,000 from Clueless, then had trouble when the third car payment came around.

So he hired a business manager.

Wikipedia defines a business manager as someone who manages the work of others in order to run a business efficiently. In the acting and music industry, they supervise their business affairs and financial matters. It’s in that context that I want to offer up the idea that you should get your own business manager.

I don’t mean you should go out and actually hire someone and put them on your payroll. I mean you should get someone, a friend, a family member, someone you trust, to help you with your finances. If you’re struggling, and the hardest part is to realize that you’re struggling, then you need to run your ideas by someone else. You need someone who can give you a unbiased third party perspective.

Faison put it best in the interview:

FAISON: Now I have somebody who yells at me anytime I make an outlandish purchase.

Sometimes that’s all we need, a different perspective to put everything into focus.

Do you have a “business manager?”

{ 18 comments, please add your thoughts now! }

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18 Responses to “Hire A Business Manager”

  1. eric says:

    Not only am I my own manager, I think I’m considered a business manager for a few others too. They come to me whenever they need someone to yell at them for buying something they don’t need. Works out wonderfully. ;)

  2. Foo Finance says:

    Might want to redo the last sentence in the first paragraph. I think you are missing some words or something…

    I too am my own business manager. It is more about mindset and personality. To stop spending you have to want to stop. Then you can train yourself to not make stupid purchases.

    - Bobby

  3. zapeta says:

    Yeah, I’m my own manager with occasional help from my girlfriend. I’ve become manager for several of my friends too.

  4. Chris says:

    Some of my friends might be hopelessy lost as they have stopped coming to me regarding these types of situations. I think that it may be because they are tired of me telling them they did the wrong thing.

  5. A business manager, a Board of Directors or a shoulder to cry on; everyone needs support when dealing with more complex decisions and challenges of life.

    The key is picking the right one to trust.

    Lots of people appear to have managed their finances well and will tell you they have managed their finances well but how many truly have?

    The real question that you can answer is what criteria you would use to choose who to listen to… other than the Bargaineer of course!

  6. I don’t have a “business manager,” but I definitely play the role for a few friends.

  7. mikestreb says:

    Based on his quote, “FAISON: Now I have somebody who yells at me anytime I make an outlandish purchase”….

    If that is the definiton of ‘Business Manager,’ Then yes, I have a ‘Business Manager’. My Wife…………

  8. Soccer9040 says:

    I act as a business manager to a few people, but they know I will usually rip them a new one when they go do something stupid. They are very receptive to me helping them increase their 401k by a few % each year, but then they go buy expensive cars or something else.

    You can only help those who want to be helped.

  9. hoht says:

    Gotta agree with LeanLifeCoach, saying it’s done is one thing, getting it done is another story.

  10. As soon as my assets break $10 million, I think it’s probably smart to hire a business manager. So, check back with me in 50 years! :)

  11. jsbrendog says:

    this is probably out of the realm of possibility for most “average” poeple. Just be smart. I know, i know, not as easy as it sounds, but you can’t go trough life always needing to depend on everyone else to make sure you do the right thing

  12. AmandaDRowe says:

    Generally, I don’t need a business manager, but I still often ask the opinions of people I trust on any large purchases. I find it incredibly useful to talk to “experts” in each area.

  13. I’d have to side with mikestreb on this one. I’m pretty good at making money, but I’m even better at spending it. So I leave it to my girlfriend to yell at me when I did something stupid. Very effective :-)

  14. Manshu says:

    If all it takes is yelling at bad decisions, then I am ready to be hired :)

  15. I totally agree: it’s a good idea to run your money decisions by someone you trust who is not emotionally involved in the decision.

    BUT – whether you’re a famous actor or not – you need to do your homework and make sure your “business manager” is well-informed and trust-worthy.

    Another example from Hollywood: Nicholas Cage used live down the street from me in the French Quarter in New Orleans. Last week his house was sold in auction thanks to his poor business manager.


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