Last week I wrote about the New York Times story concerning President Donald Trump’s taxes, and well, quite a bit has happened since then to push that to the background of the national conversation. In this space, however, we will linger there for one more week.
As I said last week, there was no great revelation of wrongdoing in the report. The issues one could have with it are more with the system than the actions taken within it. What story one extrapolates from there can vary depending on where you want it to go. Does this show someone who is not a strong businessman, has racked up continuous losses, and now stands on the verge of everything bursting? Does this show someone who knows how to work the system and has his money going in the right directions so that he pays as little in income tax as possible while keeping a strong overall portfolio?
There is probably a real answer somewhere between the two, but we do not have any actual financials from the president and were not sitting in any board rooms when decisions were made. Without that information, it is very possible that what appears to be a giant loss in some aspect of business could have been a strategic plan to offset numbers somewhere else.
Either way, there are good lessons that can be taken from this situation. First, this shows the importance of good tax planning. Trump’s tax returns did not come together by looking at the numbers once at the end of the year when it came time to file. They happened because of many willful actions. And sure, most people do not have the means to make THAT many moves, but there is always something to be done to your advantage.
Another lesson is how much you need to make a business plan that fits your needs and goals. I mean, Trump has had a level of success in business that is more than minimal and undeniable. What he has accomplished did not happen by pure accident. Again, there is room in the story for mistakes to have been made, but it also seems he is doing a lot of what he wants to be doing in the way he wants to do it.
Business owners should make choices that fit the vision they have for where they want to go. Working within the system to get the results you want is how you get to the pinnacle of success – you just have to decide what you want your pinnacle to be. One way to get there is to surround yourself with those that can help you accomplish those goals and share in your vision. So if there is anything we can do facilitate your journey, let us know.
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