Tag: america

After 20 years in corporate America, this 47-year-old ditched his suit for painting, building, and sailing around the world

dan givens 2

Two decades in the corporate world was enough for 47-year-old Dan Givens.

In April 2015, he quit his job as the head of financial planning and analysis for OpenTable, rented his house in San Francisco, and set off for the coast of southern Chile.

“I got tired of working so hard for corporate America and longed for work that was more impactful to others and more meaningful to me,” he tells Business Insider. “I decided to take time off from the working world to explore the ‘actual’ world. I didn’t have a formal plan, but I figured this was as good a time as any to do something radical. I was single and I had a few passions that I wanted to explore: sailing, travel, photography, and helping others.”

Since trading in his home and career for a backpack, camera, and life on the road, he has spent time in Chile, Germany, and Thailand, volunteering for “host families” in exchange for room and board.

We spoke to Givens about his new lifestyle: what it looks like, the reality of living and working abroad, and how he’s affording it.

SEE ALSO: One couple quit their jobs to build a new life traveling the US in a 98-square-foot tiny home

“The thought of building a career and lifestyle around travel has been percolating in the back of my mind for as long as I can remember,” he says.

He pulled the trigger in April 2015, when he quit his job and spent the next couple of months preparing for a new life on the road. He packed up his home and made it “rental ready,” set up his website, Dannyboy Travels, finished his sailing certifications, and looked up visa requirements in various countries.

Having worked full-time for the past 20 years while supporting only himself, Givens had a substantial savings built up, despite living in the pricey Bay Area. He was able to save about a year’s worth of after-tax salary to spend on the road. He also built a financial plan before jet-setting, factoring in expenses, income, investment return, and tax rate.

His adventure officially began August 25, 2015, when he set off for Tenglo Island, off the coast of southern Chile, where he would do volunteer work for three families.

He finds his hosts through internet bulletin boards, such as Help-X, World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms (WWOOF), and Find a Crew. In exchange for labor, he gets a roof to sleep under and at least one meal a day.

The work is usually physical — in Chile, he pruned apple trees, painted houses, and cleaned sailboats — but he’s also taught English and done some web and multimedia work. While his schedule varies depending on the type of work, his host, and the weather, he spends about four to five hours a day doing volunteer work, Monday through Friday.

“I like the variety of the work, the physical nature of the work, and the impact of the work,” Givens says. “I like the fresh air, fresh faces, and fresh perspective on life.”

The duration of his stays varies. There is no contract, so he can stay as long or as short as he wants.

After a month in Chile, he returned to San Francisco to regroup for a few days before heading to Germany to spend time with friends. In late October, he bought a one-way ticket to Thailand, where he would spend the next three months helping a family run a resort, which consisted of 15 bungalows and a restaurant.

“I helped install outdoor lighting and walkways, prepared the foundation for a beach bar, and painted the buildings,” he explains. “I also built a spreadsheet for them to manage their bookings online, instead of using pen and paper. Lastly, I implemented a set of procedures for cleaning rooms and public areas.”

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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The incredible rise of billionaire Donald Bren, the richest real estate developer in America

Donald Bren

California native Donald Bren is the wealthiest real estate developer in America, according to our list of the 50 richest people on earth, produced in collaboration with Wealth-X.

The mogul has an estimated net worth of $17 billion that comes primarily from his development and property investments in Southern California.

Bren’s privately-held real estate investment company, Irvine Company, has a portfolio of properties that exceeds 110 million square feet and includes office buildings, apartments, marinas, and hotels, most of which is located in picturesque Orange County.

At 83 years old, the former US Marine is still running the show as chairman of Irvine Company — here’s the story behind his success.

SEE ALSO: The 29 richest people in America

AND: How IKEA creator Ingvar Kamprad built the world’s largest furniture retailer — and a $39 billion fortune

Donald Bren was born in Los Angeles in 1932. His father, a movie producer, and his mother, a patron of the performing arts, divorced when he was 10. His father remarried to an actress and his mother to a well-off industrialist.

Sources: Wealth-XFortune

Bren and his brother attended Beverly Hills High School and spent their summers working as carpenters for their dad’s real estate development business. A key lesson he learned from his father: “When you hold property over the long term, you’re able to create better values and you have something tangible to show for it,” Bren told the Los Angeles Times in 2011.

Sources: Fortune, Los Angeles Times

 

Bren earned a partial athletic scholarship to the University of Washington for skiing. He was reportedly a stylish skier and an avid competitor who was set to go to the 1956 Olympics but couldn’t participate because of a broken ankle.

Source: Fortune

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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The 30 highest-paying jobs in America

C-Suite executives are known for pulling in a pretty penny. But as it turns out, doctors make even more.
That’s right: On average, those sporting scrubs and stethoscopes bring home fatter paychecks than those donning suits and …

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The 13 most meaningful jobs in America

If your goal in life is to make the world a better place, you should probably pursue a job in education or healthcare.
Twelve of the top 13 most meaningful jobs in America, according to PayScale, fell into o…

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The 50 most elite boarding schools in America

Attending an elite boarding school sets students up for lifelong success. It can open doors to prominent colleges, place students in a powerful alumni network, provide a top-notch education, and create lifelong friends.
Prest…

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Good Morning America

Click here to see a replay of my segment on Good Morning America this morning:
How to Cope In a Recession
Also, I wanted to give you access to an audio I developed that will give you the tools to turn crisis and challenge into true opportunity in your life, that will help get you out of […]

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