Illustration Credit: Small Nest Eggs by Jody Edwards
Many moons ago, when I was in my 20s and new to Knight-Ridder—then the second-largest newspaper publisher in the country—our treasurer pulled me into his office to discuss the company 401(k) savings plan and tell me why he considered it imperative that I join.At the time, the company was matching 50 percent of whatever part of my earnings I was willing to put into the firm’s retirement savings program, up to 6 percent of my salary. “There is no better investment in the world,” the treasurer told me. “You will never get a better deal anywhere, ever,” he said.“You’re being guaranteed a 50 percent return on whatever you decide to invest. You’ll never get that kind of return on investment anywhere else.”Makes sense, right? But I didn’t jump at the chance, at least not that moment. Shortsighted indeed. But since then I’ve studied investments and why we make them and—more importantly—why we don’t.Shlomo Benartzi, professor and co-chair of the Behavioral Decision-Making Group of the UCLA Anderson School of Management and one of the key pioneers in his field, cites three basic reasons why regular folk do not ma …
For more, find Janet's book, Behavioral Influences on Retirement Planning, at amazon.com.
Janet Aschkenasy taught yoga (2003) as a volunteer at the Momentum AIDS Project and the Callen-Lorde Community Health Center in New York City. She continues to practice and train at Rasa Yoga (www.rasayoga.com).