In response to the 10/12/12 post, “Debt is a Detriment to Leadership,” a number of readers sent in comments.  The comments fell into three categories: A) Interesting; B) You are right; and C) I wish someone had shared this with me early in my career.

I was lucky, I had a number of mentors that got into my personal business and insisted that I keep my financial house in order. Who were these mentors? They were the heavy weights in school finance and school leadership in the 80’s and 90’s, Dr. Richard Hooker, Robert ‘Bob’ Brezina, and Dr. John Sawyer.  Here is the short version of their advice:

1.  If you are lucky, you will be able to move up in your current organization.  Don’t plan on it. The higher you go, the more likely it is that you will move.

2. As you move up in position, it is likely that initially you will move down in salary.

3. Live well below your means.

4. Don’t buy a house that you can’t lease or sell quickly.

5. Financial liquidity equals options and opportunity.

I hope this advice serves you as well as it has served me.

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