About · Press · Contact · Write For Us · Top Personal Finance Blogs
Featured In:
Michael Lewis
Michael R. Lewis is a retired corporate executive and entrepreneur. During his 40+ year career, Lewis created and sold ten different companies ranging from oil exploration to healthcare software. He has also been a Registered Investment Adviser with the SEC, a Principal of one of the larger management consulting firms in the country, and a Senior Vice President of the largest not-for-profit health insurer in the United States. Mike's articles on personal investments, business management, and the economy are available on several online publications. He's a father and grandfather, who also writes non-fiction and biographical pieces about growing up in the plains of West Texas - including The Storm.

8 Tips to Protect Yourself From Rising Healthcare Costs

By Michael Lewis

healthcareThe impact of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, informally referred to as “Obamacare,” is likely to be felt by Americans in the near future through higher healthcare insurance premiums, increased difficulty in making doctor appointments, and decreased face-to-face consultations with their personal physicians. While the exorbitant annual increases in healthcare costs of past years could moderate – and possibly reverse – in the long-term as a result of the act, everyone should be prepared for higher healthcare expenses in the short-term.

Click to continue reading...

What Is an Internship – Benefits, Pay & Expectations

By Michael Lewis

internInternships, both paid and unpaid, have become increasingly popular over the last decade with employers and candidates. Employers have long recognized the significant expenses incurred to identify, recruit, hire, and train employees, only to lose the employee who then quits and moves to another company or industry. Presently, one in three employees in the U.S. leaves his or her job for a new position each year – this is substantially higher than the rate of one in four that existed in 2006, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Click to continue reading...

What Is Health Insurance – Definition & How It Works

By Michael Lewis

doctor nurse patientThe purchase of a health insurance policy for the first time is, in many ways, a rite of passage – a signal that you have passed from child to adult. The purchase of a health insurance policy is also one of the more expensive acquisitions you will make during your life, rivaling the expense of buying a home. At the same time, most people do not understand health insurance or the components of the contract between insurance companies and themselves, often learning to their dismay that coverage they thought they had is actually nonexistent.

Click to continue reading...

Investing in Individual Stocks – 5 Survival Techniques in a Changing Market

By Michael Lewis

some feel that the stock market is a big gambleThere are no flashing lights, no clatter of coins hitting the metal bins of slot machines, no raucous shouts of victory or envious looks when a winner hits it big. But some believe that Wall Street is no different than the Las Vegas Strip – less glamor, less glitz, but still a place for gamblers to risk all where the house has the edge.

Dr. Leon Cooperman, the noted hedge fund founder and president of Omega Advisers, Inc., warned President Obama on CNBC television that “the best capital markets in the world were turning into a casino.” And The Motley Fool, a popular newsletter for individual investors, said in November 2011 that “market volatility had become so erratic this summer that it often felt like a rigged game.”

Click to continue reading...

What Is Good Customer Service – 2 Models for Success

By Michael Lewis

clerk and a buyerAll companies claim to value and provide great customer service. But the fact is, few companies understand the components of the customer service model they promise, or deliver the level of customer service expected. In fact, according to a poll by American Express, 78% of customers surveyed chose not to make an intended purchase due to poor service, and 60% of purchasers were willing to try a new brand or company solely to receive better service elsewhere.

In an environment where all competitors have broad selections, similar brands, and low prices, excellent customer service is what differentiates retailers from their competition. Why then is mediocre or poor customer service commonplace, and how can management make a difference?

Click to continue reading...

What Is a Private Placement (Reg D) Offering – Definition & Risks

By Michael Lewis

riskPrivate placements – the sale of securities by an issuing company to a limited number of private investors – have become the venue of choice for “bad brokers, disingenuous dealers, unprincipled promoters, and iniquitous issuers,” according to Jeff Joseph, a noted venture blogger.

A private placement transaction is exempt from the registration and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) under rules detailed in Regulation D (Reg D) found under Title 17 of the Code of Federal Regulations, part 230, Sections 501 through 508. As a consequence of the exemption, use of Regulation D is the favorite vehicle of those looking to fleece unsuspecting investors.

Click to continue reading...

What Is a Certified Financial Advisor – 15 Types & Credentials

By Michael Lewis

financial advisor with coupleSince prehistoric times, men have adorned themselves in paint, animal skins, and feathers to impress, intimidate, and influence their fellow humans. While people no longer wear such accoutrements, many, particularly those employed within the financial industry, continue to enhance their status by appending alphabetic symbols to their names, the psychic totems of a modern world. Of course, the value of such acronym symbols depends upon the recognition and understanding of their meaning by the viewer.

Click to continue reading...

What Is the JOBS Act (Jumpstart Our Business Startups)

By Michael Lewis

jobsH.R. 3606, Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act (JOBS) was passed by the House and Senate on March 27, 2012 and signed into law by President Obama on April 5, 2012. While most economists believe the act will have little impact on increased employment, the restrictions and costs faced by private companies seeking to access public markets during their early growth years will be reduced.

However, the benefits are likely to come at the expense of private investors who have lost long-established protections provided under prior securities laws. Many observers believe that the increased risks of frauds and scams to the public at large outweigh the small benefits to a limited group of companies, investment managers, and broker-dealers.

Click to continue reading...

5 Cell Phone Etiquette Rules & Tips to Curb Your Addiction

By Michael Lewis

poor cell phone mannersCell phones first began popping up in the early 1990s. Cute, brick-like objects weighing two-and-a-half pounds, they seemed to be perfect companions for long road trips. However, over time, the cell phone underwent a makeover, shrinking in size and growing in capabilities. Initially purchased by electronic aficionados and early adopters of technology, cell phones spread rapidly through the world’s populace, with approximately 5.6 billion phones in use by 2010. The question, “Why would I want a cell phone?” quickly became, “How can I live without one?”

Click to continue reading...

How the U.S. Can Eliminate Dependence on Foreign Oil by 2020

By Michael Lewis

oil wells in texasUnited States presidents since Richard Nixon have sought the development and implementation of a comprehensive energy policy without success. As a consequence, the country became heavily dependent upon foreign oil imports in the early 1970s. The first supply crisis occurred with the Arab Oil Embargo of 1973-1974, which, in his “Memoirs,” Henry Kissinger called the “worst crisis to the free world since World War II.”

Click to continue reading...

How to Improve Customer Service in Your Business & Make It Great

By Michael Lewis

customer satisfactionWhen was the last time you enjoyed a truly superb shopping experience? According to research, less than 10% of consumers are satisfied with the customer service they receive, whether purchasing a new television or staying in a luxury hotel.

Access to worldwide products, improved logistics, new technologies, and similar business philosophies and strategies have created a standardized, homogenized marketplace in consumers’ minds. While the rewards of being an industry leader are great, the risks of a wrong decision can be disastrous. As a consequence, few in management are willing to “think outside the box” or try new approaches to create a robust link between themselves and their customers. The result is a lack of differentiation that creates an environment where consumers are indifferent about the companies from whom they buy goods and services, viewing each as offering similar, if not identical, benefits as the others.

Click to continue reading...

20 Ways to Manage & Increase Small Business Cash Flow

By Michael Lewis

cash flow wordsWhile sales are the muscles of a business, cash flow is its life blood. Cash flowing regularly into a company is necessary to pay salaries, buy materials, and literally keep the lights on and the doors open. Many companies are forced to slow their growth simply because they lack the cash inflows necessary to support the cost outflows.

Speeding up the flow – converting sales into cash as soon as possible – and increasing the spread between inflows and outflows to build a cash cushion are essential to the long-term, sustained growth of every company, large or small.

Click to continue reading...

13 Ways to Cut Administrative Overheard Costs in Your Business

By Michael Lewis

cut expensesThe costs of running a company are often hidden, but can be substantial. Cutting these costs is as effective as cutting the direct variable costs of labor and materials. Unlike manufacturing costs, most administrative costs are “fixed,” in that they rarely vary from month-to-month, even though revenues go up or down.

Figuring out how to reduce or eliminate specific administrative costs is essential to the profitability and long-term success of your company. Trimming these expenses will decrease the revenues necessary to break even or make a profit, provide greater flexibility in long-term pricing strategy, and improve cash flow.

Click to continue reading...

15 Surefire Ways to Increase Revenue in Your Business

By Michael Lewis

how to jumpstart revenueSales are the single most important activity in which a company can engage. They allow companies to hire people, buy equipment, and manufacture products or deliver services. Without sales, there is no future for a business.

The poor economy in recent years has hit small businesses particularly hard. Whether you’re among the affected companies or just want to boost your sales, the following strategies to raise revenues are effective in most situations. However, your decision to implement any of them should be based upon several factors:

Click to continue reading...

  • The compatibility of the strategy with your products

How to Reduce Labor Costs in Your Business

By Michael Lewis

cut costs scissorsSalaries and wages are one of the largest costs of every company, and are often the most difficult to control. But changing compensation is touchy for those who are affected, so it is important to handle the changes with compassion, truth, and firmness.

One way to do this is to identify your key employees and get their commitment to your plans before you implement them. Companies that reduce compensation or fire employees without considering other methods to increase productivity or reduce costs invariably suffer from poor morale, indifferent customer relations, and further declines in sales, potentially falling into a downward spiral from which there is no recovery.

Click to continue reading...

The content on Money Crashers is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as professional financial advice. Should you need such advice, consult a licensed financial or tax advisor. References to products, offers, and rates from third party sites often change. While we do our best to keep these updated, numbers stated on this site may differ from actual numbers.
Advertising Disclosure: We may have financial relationships with some of the companies mentioned on this website. Among other things, we may receive free products, services, and/or monetary compensation in exchange for featured placement of sponsored products or services. We strive to write accurate and genuine reviews and articles, and all views and opinions expressed are solely those of the authors.
Links monetized by VigLink