Are You Better Off Now than 4 Years Ago? Your Answers May Surprise You

“Are you better off today than you were 4 years ago?” That’s the question Republicans are imploring Americans to answer as they make their way to the voting booths in a few months.  Let’s put politics and party affiliations aside and apply this question to you and your career, to you and your company.

Most of us don’t think in 4-year chunks. We are retrospective and introspective about the early days, last year or even last week. Four years is a rather arbitrary benchmark post-college.  And we aren’t choosing a President of Public Relations, though that would be great fun.

So, as the Democratic Convention kicks off this week and Obama supporters are advised to answer “absolutely!” to the “4-year” question, how would you answer:

* Are you better off in your career now than you were 4 years ago? (you’ve taken chances, had some “wins”, learned from some losses,  been fairly compensated and handed more responsibilities?)

* Is your company doing better than it was in 2008 and how did you, or didn’t you, contribute to that? (At the baseline, do you know how your company is performing? Were you able to have an impact on its successes?)

* Are your customers, clients and fellow employees more satisfied with you today than thousands of days ago? (Have you asked lately? Do you feel you’ve made a positive impact on your stakeholders? Do you care – enough, not enough?)

If you answered Absolutely to the questions above, congratulations. You are probably the 1 percent of Contents. For most of us, it’s a question covered in a lot of gray area.  But just asking it regularly – more than every four years – is a step in the right direction. So, thank you Romney and Obama for introducing this question to our lives. I will definitely vote for one of you.

–    Diane Schwartz

@dianeschwartz (please follow me on Twitter for at least the next 4 years)

  • Jeff Miller

    Good question. My answer: professionally I, along with the company I work for, are better off now than 4 years ago. How? A lot of hard work by our staff and a total commitment to the customer.

    Personally, I am better off too. I/we took pay and benefit reductions as a result of the 2008 crash. Since then, we have restored our original reduction and given raises. I’ve hit my numbers and received bonuses too.

    My question: why is it that I feel angry and helpless in spite of my perceived success?!

    Answer: because our government was sold to the highest bidder loooong ago. As Gore Vidal said, “Our form of democracy is bribery, on the highest scale.”

    Arguing about if we’re better off with BHO or MR as president is stupid. We’re screwed either way.

  • Guy Bailey

    Yes. I’m better off today. I was on the dole for six months in 2009 before getting steadily better jobs as the economy improves to where I’m in a great one today with a steady stream of Freelance work coming in on the side.

    I’m trying to be apolitical here and answering the question but let’s remember that the guy was made captain AFTER the Titanic had struck the iceberg…

  • nancy

    The answer is simple yes.
    I own a small Pilates studio and my business directly correlates with the amount of dispensable income people have. We lost clients 2007-08 and in the last couple years we not only got them back but increased the amount of services rendered. I also teach certification and Continuing Education Classes. My courses now have steady and strong enrollment as compared to 4 years ago. My husbands business it up 70 percent.
    Our schools have gone downhill but that is our state and local government. They do everything they can to go against the current president even at the cost of our school children.
    Keep going forward!

  • LakersFan

    I’m better off now than 4 years ago even though I have no job and barely any money. I’m positive about the future.

    @Jeff Miller: If you get screwed, it’s your own fault, not President Obama or Romney. Also do you know Romney’s middle name? You show your bigotry very well.

  • Darrell Parsons

    Absolutely, but I am not better off than I was 2 years ago…. Hmm..Oh that was because the GOP tea Party took control of the house. That party of no and their filibustering antics, “GOP” Blocking any meaningful progress.

  • Sally McCubbin

    Yes, I am better off thanks to the stock market recovery my IRA account has increased 92% over the past four years

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