I’ve been unemployed for three months, but recently I received two job offers. One is a state job that would pay $50,000 a year. The other is a one-year contract for a position in Afghanistan that pays $200,000. I know I’d like both jobs, so which would be the smartest choice?
If it were me, I’d take the state job. I know that any kind of situation with six figures attached to it looks and sounds wonderful, but in my mind we’re talking about a career choice versus risk. Plus, I’m a firm believer in the idea that people make better decisions when they think in terms of 10 years from now rather than 10 or 12 months down the road.
In addition to the risk factor, the biggest problem with the offer in Afghanistan is that once it’s over, it’s over. Then you’re right back where you are now. You may have money in your bank account, but you’re unemployed all over again.
You know, one of the things I’ve noticed over the years is when wealthy people assess a financial opportunity, they almost always think in five-, 10- and 20-year blocks of time. We’re talking long term here. There’s not a whiff of living paycheck to paycheck or work fatigue on them.
Take the state job and fashion a good, long-lasting career for yourself. Don’t go chasing money on the short term!
Dave Ramsey is America’s trusted voice on money and business. He’s authored four New York Times best-selling books: Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover and EntreLeadership. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 5 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.