Our 2020 401(k) Champions®
A: Around the office, if you ask anyone for advice on finances, fitness, and fabulous food, I’m the go-to woman. With this informal role of influence, I have taken it upon myself to offer the more junior associates advice (when asked, of course) on how to improve their financial lives, and a key component of our discussions is always the pillar of a 401k...I want to be sure I’m sharing the wealth so to say, and encouraging others to utilize tax advantaged vehicles as much as possible to leverage the free money, compound interest, and time in market.
A: If I were to advise co-workers about contributing to our 401(k)...I always tell them it is a must...I've been told by the younger teachers that they can't afford to contribute, and I always reply that they can't NOT afford to! They are throwing money away if they don't start...I wish someone had had this talk with me when I was much younger. I didn't join a 401(k) until I was almost 40 years old, and that 401(k) is now a rollover IRA. When I rolled it over, it only had about $20,000 in it, but in the fifteen years that I have let it grow, it now has over $115,000! That's the next conversation I have with my young coworkers - watching your money grow.
A: I remember the day clearly. It was the summer of 2002, and I was sitting in the company conference room beginning to lose focus. At the end of the table was the representative from the company 401k plan, and he was there to encourage the latest new hires to sign up. One of those new hires was me...Now I’m 41. I...wish I could give my 23-year-old self a high five...That little account I was so unsure about starting 18 years ago, now has over $300,000 in it. And because I started slow and gradually increased my contributions over time, I never felt the pinch...At 59 ½, I’ll be able to access that money penalty-free, and enjoy the kind of retirement I see in my mind.