Stacking Benjamins' Joe Saul-Sehy pays the price for wearing plastic shoes

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The popular podcast host fesses up to having been a cheapskate fashion victim early in his career- and how learning to dress better, literally made him wealthier. 

 

In Joe’s money story you will learn:

-Joe’s penny pinching philosophy- and how it backfired

-The impact of getting a gig on local tv

-Joe’s off-base take on how to develop trust in clients

 

In Joe’s lesson you will learn:

-The true cost of plastic shoes

-Why your co-workers may not tell you the truth

-How to avoid some of Joe’s mistakes

-How Joe invested in fixing his image problem, and increased his wealth

-Ways to get feedback on not just your career but also other aspects of your life

 

In Joe’s money tip you will learn:

-How to delegate one person to be the lead family financial manager

-What Joe refers to as ‘fantasyland'

-The one thing Joe does that avoids fighting about money in his family

-How to spot mistakes in your bills

 

In my take you will learn:

-The value of investing in your personal appearance

-What Kevin O’Leary had to say about investing in quality clothing and accessories

-How I have been burned by low quality purchases as fast fashion stores

-Why renting clothing can be a viable option that may work for your budget

-The importance of constantly upgrading your skills through education including online courses. 

 

Episode links:

Mint

Clarity Money

Moneylion

Udemy

Rent the Runway

 

Follow Joe Saul-Sehy!

 

Joe’s course How to legally cheat on your taxes

Joe’s money in the mornings show on facebook

Joe’s Facebook group

 

Money in the Morning podcast

Stacking Benjamins podcast

 

Twitter: @averagejoemoney

Facebook: Facebook.com/stackingbenjamins

The popular podcast host fesses up to having been a cheapskate fashion victim early in his career- and how learning to dress better, literally made him wealthier. 

 
The popular podcast host fesses up to having been a cheapskate fashion victim early in his career- and how learning to dress better, literally made him wealthier. In this Financial Grownup podcast episode we discuss the value of investing in your personal appearance. #AppearanceTips #InvestInYourself

The popular podcast host fesses up to having been a cheapskate fashion victim early in his career- and how learning to dress better, literally made him wealthier. In this Financial Grownup podcast episode we discuss the value of investing in your personal appearance. #AppearanceTips #InvestInYourself

 

Transcription

Joe Saul-Sehy:
That changed my entire career. My career went from growing at an okay rate, to all the sudden growing by leaps and bounds because I looked the part.

Bobbi Rebell:
You're listening to Financial Grownup with me, certified financial planner, Bobbi Rebell author of How To Be A Financial Grownup. You know what, being a grownup is really hard, especially when it comes to money. But it's okay, we're going to get there together. I'm going to bring you one money story from a financial grownup, one lesson and then my take on how you can make it your own. We've got this.

Bobbi Rebell:
Hey friends. This episode is all about investing in yourself. Whether it comes to your wardrobe or your education as you hear and will hear more from our guest Joe Saul-Sehy is the host of the crazy popular award winning Stacking Benjamins podcast. I don't have time to list all of the awards it has won but they include Best Business Podcast from the Academy of Podcasters, and Best Finance Podcast by Kiplinger. They also win a lot of these Plutus Awards among others.

Bobbi Rebell:
You're going to really like Joe's story. If you're a good dresser you're going to feel validated for spending all that time, effort and money. If you're not such a good dresser, I hope you're going to get motivated. Here is Joe Saul-Sehy. Joe Saul-Sehy, you are a financial grownup. Welcome to the podcast.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
I can't believe I made it here. I must be a grownup if I made it here.

Bobbi Rebell:
You must, and you're up early these days. We're going to talk more about it later, but congratulations on the launch of Money In The Morning. It's awesome, and I love the music.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Thank you. We picked it out just for you Bobbi. That's our whole thing, if we can win with Bobbi we win with everybody, so there we go.

Bobbi Rebell:
It's happy music.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
It is happy music, and I need happy music with coffee in the morning.

Bobbi Rebell:
You've evolved a lot in your grownup life, but there was a time, and we're leading into your money story here Joe, when you were a bit of a cheapskate. It wasn't just affecting you, it was really affecting your whole universe. Do tell.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
I was a financial planner for 16 years. During that time I was teaching people how to pinch pennies and cut corners where they could. I thought, "You know, I really should take my own advice." I learned a valuable lesson here because people come to see you and they expect a certain type of person, but at the time I didn't think about that. I thought, "You know what? I'm in my office all day. I'm never out of my office." When I am, I started doing a television gig in Detroit at WXYZ Channel Seven, go Detroit. Even when I did that, people didn't see my shoes. So I went from really nice shoes-

Bobbi Rebell:
Well people that were watching you on camera did not see your shoes.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Right, right.

Bobbi Rebell:
To be clear.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
People watching me on television didn't see my shoes. People that I interfaced with on a daily basis, they did, and my clients did. So I went from these really nice shoes that I had to these plastic shoes. You know, the shoes that buy at-

Bobbi Rebell:
I don't know about plastic shoes Joe.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Of course you don't. Like a Payless shoes. I would go there and I'd find these shoes that looked nice, but they looked like they were polished but they really were just plastic-y. For about a year, I for those. I dumbed down my suits, I wore cheaper ties. I thought, "People trust me, they like me. I don't need to spend a lot of money on this stuff." And then I realized that everything that I was doing was wrong one day, when I finally bought some new shoes and I went to my mentor's office, and the very first thing he said Bobbi, I walk in he said, "It's about time you got rid of those cheap shoes."

Joe Saul-Sehy:
I said, "What are you talking about? I've had those for a year. How come you didn't tell me?" He goes, "Well, I just thought you'd find out sooner or later by yourself." So I realized then that everyone notices. Then when I hired a firm to help me look better on TV, because I also-

Bobbi Rebell:
You hired someone.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
I had to.

Bobbi Rebell:
So now you're really investing.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Yes. Yes, because I realized from the shoes, I realized I kind of have to invest in my career, and then I realized how bad everything was. The very first thing that the firm said that I hired, they said, "Well, we need to give you a big boy haircut." Because I was still wearing this haircut that I had from college, this is back when I had hair. They changed my look to be a more sophisticated haircut, to be shorter, to be more conservative, to look the part.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
They went with me shopping for clothes to show me how I could still spend less money on clothes, but I had to dress much more smart. I had to be trust ... and it's funny how that changed my entire career. My career went from growing at an okay rate, to all the sudden growing by leaps and bounds because I looked the part. I don't know about you Bobbi, I don't trust people who look too good, people that are dressed to the nines. For whatever reason I don't trust them, but that doesn't give you an excuse to not dress appropriately, and I guess even to widen it, to take responsibility for your career. We have to take responsibility for this thing that we call a career and make it our own?

Bobbi Rebell:
Expending on that, what is the lesson for our listeners from the story?

Joe Saul-Sehy:
I think the big lesson is don't wait for somebody else to give you this feedback about your career. Look in the mirror, and not just in the physical aspects like I was, but look in the mirror when it comes to your relationships with your family, with your relationship with money, with your relationship with your job. It's far easier, everybody wants to pinch pennies, it's far easier to go make a lot more money that it is to pinch pennies. It's funny, we might be able to save 50 cents or a dollar, but we could make $100 this week if we just looked outside ourself and went looking. I mean, there are so many job opportunities online, there are so many things to do. Look in the mirror and take responsibility for yourself was something that I learned that day that I try to teach other people now.

Bobbi Rebell:
And grow the top line.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Grow the top line, amen.

Bobbi Rebell:
So give us a money tip, something personal that you and your family do that people can maybe make their own and do right away.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
I just said, focus on the top line Bobbi, but I also look at the bottom line. Because if we can stretch the difference between the two of those, then that's where we experience growth. In a lot of families what I noticed is that one person in the family, like you have a budgeting partner, a spouse, a significant other, one person usually knows where every dollar is, every dime is. The other person's in a place I refer to as fantasy land. They think they know, they have this general feeling, but they also know the other person's taking care of it.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
That's when fights begin. That's when bad things happen in a relationship, it's because the person in fantasy land all the sudden realizes the fantasy doesn't look the way they thought that it should have, so there ends up being friction. To avoid friction, something that Cheryl my spouse, and I implemented and that I like to teach people how to do, is just have a quick weekly meeting. Maybe 15 minutes over breakfast, or I prefer over wine.

Bobbi Rebell:
In the evening, not wine at breakfast.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
It's wine, iHop, you're probably [crosstalk 00:07:10]

Bobbi Rebell:
I mean, I'm not judging but you know.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
That's right, good for somebody but maybe not me. The thing I like about this weekly meeting though is it's quick, it's actually fun. We look through ... I use an app called Clarity Money but you can Mint, you can use MoneyLion. There's lots of apps out there. You could even just use a spreadsheet or look through, go to your bank website and take a look at what expenses you had. It's very easy, here's the way we do it. We look through all the upcoming expenses. What are we going to spend money on in the next week? We talk through that. Then the second thing we do is we look at the previous week's expenses and we see if there were any mistakes on any of our bills. What's funny is, we find so many mistakes. It's horrifying how many-

Bobbi Rebell:
And they're never in your favor.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
They never ever ... It's amazing that none of them ... Yeah, isn't that shocking. Yeah, business is always taking from me. And then also look for recurring expenses that you don't need anymore. I found just a couple weeks ago that there's been a recurring meeting, because we miss meetings from time to time and I must have missed it the last two years in a row. There's a Norton subscription that I've had for the last two years that I don't have hooked up to anything. That's a $100 a year for this subscription. It was really ... Luckily I caught it. I was able to get back this year, I can't go back and get the year before that, but have that money refunded to me.

Bobbi Rebell:
That's a good thing.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Yeah, which also is cool. But the best thing is, Cheryl and I now go through the week and we know where the dollars are going to be spent. If things change we've got this open line of communication. I've got to tell you, it's so fun. The weekly meeting is so fun.

Bobbi Rebell:
Good. And you know what's really fun? Is spending less on your taxes. I have a CFP, but I have to tell you, especially because I got the CFP before the new tax law was passed. I find it a little bit overwhelming, but you have out that can help a little bit.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Yeah. Thanks for mentioning this, because we were going to call this, Bobbi, we were going to call it Understanding The Tax Form, but that sounds so boring. It just sounds so-

Bobbi Rebell:
I would want that. I would do that one, but maybe not other people.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
[crosstalk 00:09:10] Yeah, you and I are money nerds so that's great. But here's what somebody did with me, this is the genesis of the course. I thought taxes were kind of mystical and I would ask people, "Can I write this off? Is this something that maybe I can take advantage of? Is this taxable? Is this not taxable? How does it all work?" Somebody sat down with me and walk through the 1040 and how the 1040 works, and then the itemized deductions page and how that works.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Once I knew that, and what's cool is it's only three pages, once we walked through that I totally then could see what I could write off, what I couldn't write off, where my opportunities might be, how my retirement plan fit into the big picture, what the downsides might be in the future, what tax problems I might have in the future. We call the course How To Legally Cheat On Your Taxes, and it is a lot of fun. It's a do at your own pace course. It teaches you how taxes work. You can do two things. Number one, put Humpty Dumpty together, like right now during tax season.

Bobbi Rebell:
Yes, it's coming.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Put things together- Yeah, put things together in a way that helps. But that's not where the magic is. I think the real magic is doing things through the year so that when you're trying to put Humpty Dumpty together next year, you're able to do that much, much better because you knew how taxes worked going in. I think that the powerful thing. That's the reason we created it, was to try to get people that same leg up that I got.

Bobbi Rebell:
I love that. Where can people find that? And where can people find you? I know Facebook in the morning, it's fascinating people. You can him do Money In The Mornings on Facebook and you can see how everything is made.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
It's so-

Bobbi Rebell:
Including the bloopers.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Yeah. I was going to say, it's so uncomfortable because ... and I did it live on Facebook to try to force myself to do ... We talked earlier about taking responsibility for your career. One thing I do, I'm a natural stutterer, and do try to get around stuttering-

Bobbi Rebell:
What?

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Yes, and to make myself more natural on camera and try to get used to that. I started doing these daily Facebook Lives and say, "You know what, we're going to do this show without a net." So Money In The Morning is without a net, five days a week, wherever you're listening to this show. We just do two quick headlines. It's live, and man sometimes bad stuff happens. Which I think some people listen to it just to hear the car wreck.

Bobbi Rebell:
That's the best part.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Right, right. Just to hear some of the bad stuff that sometimes happens, because you can't take it back if it's live.

Bobbi Rebell:
I know. All right, so where can people find you and the course and everything?

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Yeah, yeah. That's wherever you listen to this podcast, is where you can find Money In The Morning or Stacking Benjamins, our main show. The course is at learn.stackingbenjamins.com, that course, and we have a couple others, Save 50% Of Your Income and a quick hit course on your benefits package, so when you are going through open enrollment every year. Just a very quick, like, "What do I need to remember while I'm doing my open enrollment?"

Bobbi Rebell:
Cool. Where can people find you social media before we go?

Joe Saul-Sehy:
I am @AverageJoeMoney on Twitter, stop by and say hi. On Facebook it's facebook.com/istackbenjamins.

Bobbi Rebell:
Joe Saul-Sehy, thank you so much.

Joe Saul-Sehy:
Thanks Bobbi. This was so fun. I'm so happy that I'm finally a grownup.

Bobbi Rebell:
You are. Congratulations Joe. Here is my take on what Joe had to say. Financial Grownup tip number one, wear quality clothing. This is something that previous guests Kevin O'Leary touched on as well with respect especially to his mother. Not only is it important to look your best in business, but you often come out financially ahead.

Bobbi Rebell:
I get tempted like everyone by the fast fashion places. I always get burned. I buy a sweater for 20 bucks, it looks identical to the one for 200 in the department store, so I think I'm really smart. But then, after a couple of wearings, it's trash. I'm going to let you guys in on an open secret. Notice that I said wear quality clothing. I did not say buy. If you come see me speak, I am often wearing a very expensive designer dress that I don't own. It's rented. The designer handbag I'm carrying, you got it, probably rented. That way I get the benefits of always showing up in a well made dress without having to constantly invest in buying expensive clothing.

Bobbi Rebell:
Financial Grownup tip number two, always keep learning. Joe talked about education, so whatever interests you or will further your career, get better at it. If you work for a big company, always find out what they will pay for. My first employer, CNBC, paid for my CFP classes. There are also incredible online resources from LinkedIn to Udemy, even Investopedia has great online classes. In fact many top universities are putting their classes online and you can often audit them for free. Make yourself smarter, it will probably pay off for you financially, but you'll also probably enjoy it.

Bobbi Rebell:
Thank you all for your support and feedback. I truly appreciate everyone who has subscribed, rated, reviewed and shared the podcast. It's amazing. Please, follow me on social media @BobbiRebell on Twitter, @BobbiRebell1 on Instagram. Go to my website, sign up for my newsletter so I can keep everyone posted on everything going on with the show. I hope you enjoyed Joe's story and that we all got one step closer to being financial grownups.

Bobbi Rebell:
Financial Grownup with Bobbi Rebell is edited and produced by [Steve Stuart 00:14:28] and is a BRK Media production.