Last week, I received a challenge from Sandy at First Gen American to participate in her coffee talk series. Sandy is a great story teller and her blog is one of my favorites on the internet so if you haven’t seen it, you should drop by.
Here’s the backstory from Sandy:
You are on vacation and like it happens so often in new places, you meet a deliciously interesting person in your travels. As you learn more about him/her, you find out that not only is this person a bit of an eccentric but a billionaire entrepreneur. You two hit it off immediately and in your chit chat, you discover that (s)he has been looking for someone to fill an open position. As luck would have it, this job is not only your dream job but it’s also in your dream location and at a salary that would allow you to take along your spouse or any other important loved ones if needed.
But here’s the catch. This eccentric entrepreneur thinks (s)he can learn more about someone from their tax return than they can ever learn from any resume. You decide this jig is too good to pass up, so you pull out your 2010 tax return, make a copy in its entirety and send it over. What will your new billionaire friend learn about you and does any of it relate to your dream job? Why or why not?
Mmmm…. What a great story, it makes me want to travel again! I only met poor jobless backpackers during my travels. I guess I wasn’t staying at the right hostel.
So what would my tax return say about me? Now that I think about it, there is a lot of information on the tax return which I would be very hesitant to share with a prospective employer. For example, if I have a big medical expense deduction, it would raise questions about my health and the employer might hesitate to hire me.
We’ll call the eccentric entrepreneur The Sultana for the rest of the story, easier on the tongue.
She will find out that I don’t like to give the IRS free loans because we usually owe them some money. This will be her first clue that I’m a bit tight with money.
The Sultana will know that I am married with one kid and that I take advantage of the Dependant Care Assistance Program (DCAP.) This shows that I don’t like to leave any money on the table.
The tax return will show that we also take full advantage of the tax deferred 401(k) plan. We also invest in the 529 education saving plan to reduce our state tax liability. This means that we are patient and plan for the future. If The Sultana hires me and keeps me happy, then we can have a long fruitful business relationship.
After the 1040, we’ll move on to the schedules. It will show that I am making extra money on the side from my day job. We invested in multiple rental properties and they are generating some income. I also have capital gains and dividend yields. These activities show that I am engaged in the financial market and I am connected to the global pulse. Lastly, she will see Retire by 40 and the modest income generated from this venture.
These side ventures will probably be a negative point for any employer. This shows them that I am entrepreneurial and I am not dedicating 120% to my day job. My current employer would be ecstatic if I worked 10-12 hours/day as there is never any shortage of work (with no OT pay of course.) I used to do that when I started years ago, but now I rarely commit to working those hours. If I were The Sultana, I would make it worth my while to quit these side ventures and commit fully to the job.
Do you think having multiple incomes interfere with the day job? I spend some time checking my stocks almost every morning. The rentals also cause a bit of headaches now and then. Last year one of the microwaves stop working and I spent some office time researching the fix. These side businesses show initiative, but they divide my attention. The Sultana should give me the incentive to concentrate solely on her job. A big fat paycheck and a stake in the company would do it.
Other coffee talk participants:
Budgeting in the Fun Stuff: My tax return and me
Dog at My Wallet: What does your Tax Return Say about you?
Growing my Girls: My taxes my mom
Invest it Wisely: 3 things my tax return says about me