Career

In South Africa, payday holds a special significance as it represents a fresh start, a new opportunity to manage your finances wisely. Establishing a payday routine is a smart way to ensure your money works for you, rather than the other way around. In this article, we will delve into the importance of a payday routine and offer practical tips tailored to South Africans to help you make the most of your hard-earned money.

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Money Unscripted blog. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

Set Clear Financial Goals

Before diving into your payday routine, it’s crucial to have clear financial goals. What are you saving for? Is it an emergency fund, a dream vacation, or retirement? Having specific goals will give your routine purpose and direction.

Budget Like a Pro

Creating and sticking to a budget is at the core of any effective payday routine. Take time to list your monthly expenses, including bills, groceries, transportation, and entertainment. Allocate a portion of your income to each category, ensuring that you save a portion as well.

Prioritize Debt Repayment

Many South Africans carry various forms of debt, such as credit cards, personal loans, or home loans. As part of your payday routine, allocate a portion of your income to pay down your debts. Prioritizing debt repayment can help you become debt-free sooner and save on interest.

Automate Savings

Setting up automated transfers to your savings account on payday is a smart move. This ensures that you consistently save a portion of your income without the temptation to spend it. South Africa offers various savings options, including Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs), which can provide tax benefits.

Invest for the Future

Consider including investments as part of your payday routine. South Africa has a vibrant investment landscape, offering opportunities like unit trusts, stocks, and retirement annuities (RAs). Allocate a portion of your income to investment accounts to grow your wealth over time.

Emergency Fund Building

An essential component of your payday routine should be building and maintaining an emergency fund. Unexpected expenses can arise at any time, and having a financial safety net can prevent you from dipping into savings or going into debt.

Review and Adjust

Regularly review your budget and financial goals. Life circumstances change, and your payday routine should adapt accordingly. Be flexible and willing to adjust your routine to accommodate new priorities or challenges.

Celebrate Small Wins

Don’t forget to celebrate your financial achievements, no matter how small. Each payday where you stick to your routine and make progress toward your goals is a reason to pat yourself on the back. Recognizing your successes can help keep you motivated.

Bottom Line

A well-structured payday routine is a valuable tool to take control of your finances and secure your financial future. By setting clear goals, budgeting wisely, prioritizing debt repayment, and saving and investing strategically, you can make the most of your income. Remember, financial success is a journey, not a destination, so embrace your payday routine as a step toward a brighter financial future for yourself and your family.

Money Unscripted Academy

Our courses:

1. How to master your money mindset

2. How to budget like a pro

3. How to build an emergency fund

4. How to pay off your debt

5. How to create multiple streams of income

6. Investment Guide: What’s your ‘Why’ in investing

7. Investment Guide: Investment basics

8. Investment Guide: Investment options

Saving and investing a portion of your salary is a crucial step towards achieving financial security and future goals. But determining how much you should save or invest can be challenging. The ideal amount depends on your individual financial situation, goals, and lifestyle. In this article, we’ll explore methods to help you figure out how much of your salary you need to save or invest.

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Money Unscripted blog. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

Establish Clear Financial Goals

Before you can calculate your savings and investment targets, you need to define your financial goals. These goals may include:

  • Emergency fund
  • Retirement savings
  • Buying a home
  • Paying off debt
  • Education expenses
  • Travel or lifestyle aspirations

Calculate Your Monthly Expenses

To determine how much you can save or invest, you must know your monthly expenses. Create a detailed budget that includes all your essential and discretionary spending. This will give you a clear picture of your financial commitments.

Determine Your Savings Rate

Financial experts often recommend saving or investing a specific percentage of your income. The most common rule of thumb is the 50/30/20 rule, where 50% of your income covers necessities, 30% goes toward discretionary spending, and 20% is allocated to savings and debt repayment. Adjust this rule to fit your goals and circumstances.

Emergency Fund

Start by building an emergency fund that covers 3-6 months’ worth of living expenses. Calculate the total amount you need and divide it by the number of months you want to save for. This will determine how much to set aside each month.

Retirement Savings:

For retirement savings, consider contributing at least 15% of your pre-tax income to retirement accounts like a Retirement Annuity or Tax-Free Savings Account. If your employer offers a retirement plan with a matching contribution, take full advantage of it.

Short-Term and Mid-Term Goals

Determine how much you need to save for short-term and mid-term goals. Whether it’s a down payment on a home, a vacation, or other expenses, calculate the total amount needed and divide it by the number of months or years you have to save.

Debt Repayment

If you have high-interest debt, prioritize paying it off while saving. Allocate a portion of your income toward debt repayment, in addition to your savings goals.

Evaluate Your Lifestyle

Assess your lifestyle choices and consider where you can cut back or reduce expenses. Small adjustments can free up more money for savings and investments.

Automate Your Savings

Set up automatic transfers from your checking account to dedicated savings or investment accounts. Automation ensures that you consistently save or invest without relying on willpower.

Periodically Review and Adjust

Life circumstances change, and so should your savings and investment targets. Periodically review your financial goals and adjust your savings rate accordingly.

Seek Professional Guidance

If you’re unsure about how much to save or invest, consider consulting a financial advisor. They can provide personalized guidance and help you create a financial plan that aligns with your goals.

Bottom Line

Calculating how much of your salary to save or invest requires a thoughtful approach that considers your financial goals, lifestyle, and priorities. By establishing clear objectives, creating a budget, automating your savings, and periodically reviewing your progress, you can tailor your savings and investment strategy to meet your unique financial needs. Remember that consistency is key, and even small contributions can lead to significant financial growth over time. Start where you are, and gradually increase your savings rate as your income and financial situation improve.

Money Unscripted Academy

Our courses:

1. How to master your money mindset

2. How to budget like a pro

3. How to build an emergency fund

4. How to pay off your debt

5. How to create multiple streams of income

6. Investment Guide: What’s your ‘Why’ in investing

7. Investment Guide: Investment basics

8. Investment Guide: Investment options

Losing a job can be a profoundly challenging and emotionally charged experience. It can disrupt your sense of stability, create financial uncertainty, and leave you grappling with a mix of emotions. However, it’s important to remember that job loss is not the end of your career or personal growth. In this article, we’ll explore practical steps to cope after losing a job and emerge from the experience stronger and more resilient.

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Money Unscripted blog. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

Allow Yourself to Grieve

Losing a job can be akin to losing a part of your identity. It’s entirely natural to experience a range of emotions, including shock, anger, sadness, and even shame. Give yourself permission to grieve and process these emotions. Seek support from friends, family, or a therapist if needed.

Assess Your Financial Situation

Take a close look at your financial picture. Create a budget to understand your expenses and determine how long your savings can sustain you. Consider consulting a financial advisor to help you manage your finances during this transition.

File for Unemployment Benefits

If applicable, file for unemployment benefits as soon as possible. These benefits can provide temporary financial relief while you search for your next opportunity.

Reflect and Reevaluate

Use this period of transition as an opportunity for self-reflection. Reevaluate your career goals, values, and aspirations. Consider whether you want to stay in your current field or explore new opportunities.

Update Your Resume and LinkedIn Profile

Dust off your resume and LinkedIn profile. Tailor them to showcase your skills, experiences, and accomplishments. Reach out to colleagues and mentors for recommendations and endorsements.

Network and Seek Support

Networking is a powerful tool in finding your next job. Attend industry events, join professional organizations, and connect with former colleagues. Let your network know you’re actively seeking opportunities.

Set Clear Goals

Define your short-term and long-term career goals. Establish a plan that outlines the steps you need to take to achieve them. Setting clear objectives can help you stay focused and motivated.

Consider Skill Development

Use this time to enhance your skills or gain new ones. Enroll in courses, attend workshops, or pursue certifications that will make you a more attractive candidate in your field.

Stay Positive and Persistent

Job hunting can be a challenging and sometimes lengthy process. Stay positive, maintain a routine, and persevere. Rejections are a natural part of the job search, so don’t be discouraged.

Take Care of Yourself

Your mental and physical well-being are crucial during this period. Make self-care a priority. Exercise regularly, eat healthily, and get enough sleep. Reducing stress will help you stay focused and energized.

Explore Alternative Income Streams

Consider freelance work, consulting, or part-time opportunities to generate income while you search for a full-time job. These options can provide financial stability and keep your skills sharp.

Seek Professional Guidance

If you find the job loss particularly challenging to cope with, consider speaking to a career counselor or therapist. They can offer guidance and support tailored to your specific needs.

Conclusion:

Losing a job is undoubtedly a difficult life event, but it can also be a catalyst for personal growth and career development. By allowing yourself to grieve, assessing your financial situation, and taking proactive steps towards your next opportunity, you can emerge from job loss stronger, more resilient, and with newfound clarity about your career path. Remember that setbacks are a part of life, and how you respond to them can ultimately define your future success.

Money Unscripted Academy

Our courses:

1. How to master your money mindset

2. How to budget like a pro

3. How to build an emergency fund

4. How to pay off your debt

5. How to create multiple streams of income

6. Investment Guide: What’s your ‘Why’ in investing

7. Investment Guide: Investment basics

8. Investment Guide: Investment options

In the digital era, blogging has become an incredibly popular medium for sharing information, expressing ideas, and building online communities. However, what many bloggers may not realize is that their blogs can also serve as a potential source of income. One lucrative avenue for monetizing a blog is through affiliate marketing. By strategically incorporating affiliate links into your content, you can earn commissions for every sale or action generated through your blog.

In this article, we’ll explore the concept of affiliate marketing and provide valuable tips on how to make money from your blog using affiliate links.

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Money Unscripted blog. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

Understanding Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a performance-based marketing strategy where bloggers or website owners earn a commission by promoting other people’s products or services. It works on a revenue-sharing model, where an affiliate receives a unique link (affiliate link) to promote a specific product. When a reader clicks on the affiliate link and makes a purchase, the affiliate earns a commission.

Read: 20 Side hustle ideas

What are affiliate links?

Affiliate links are unique URLs that contain a tracking code. When a reader clicks on an affiliate link placed on your blog and makes a purchase or completes a specific action, such as signing up for a service or submitting their email address, you earn a commission. The tracking code allows the advertiser to identify and credit you for the referral.

Read: Why You Should Start a Side Hustle

Getting Started with Affiliate Marketing

  • Choose a Niche: Selecting a niche for your blog is crucial. Focus on an area you are passionate about and where you have expertise. This will help you build credibility and attract a targeted audience interested in your content.
  • Research Affiliate Programs: Explore reputable affiliate networks like Amazon Associates, ShareASale, Commission Junction, and others. Look for programs that align with your blog’s niche and offer relevant products or services.
  • Apply to Affiliate Programs: Once you’ve identified suitable affiliate programs, apply to become an affiliate. Be prepared to provide information about your blog’s content, traffic, and target audience. Some affiliate programs may have specific requirements, so ensure you meet them.
  • Select Products/Services to Promote: Choose products or services that are relevant to your audience and align with your blog’s content. Promoting products you genuinely believe in increases the likelihood of conversion and trust from your readers.

Incorporating Affiliate Links

  • Create High-Quality Content: Producing valuable and engaging content should be your top priority. Write blog posts that address your audience's pain points and provide solutions. Integrate affiliate links naturally into your content, ensuring they are contextually relevant.
  • Disclose Affiliate Relationships: Transparency is vital in affiliate marketing. Clearly disclose your affiliate relationships to your audience to maintain trust and comply with legal requirements. Include a disclosure statement on your blog's pages or within each relevant blog post.
  • Utilize Various Formats: Experiment with different formats for promoting affiliate links. You can use text links within your blog posts, banner ads, product reviews, comparison charts, or even create video content where you discuss and showcase the products/services.
  • Optimize for Conversions: Test and optimize your affiliate links for better conversions. Track click-through rates, monitor which products perform well, and make adjustments accordingly. A/B testing can help identify what works best for your audience.

Read: How do South Africans spend their money?

Maximizing Your Earnings

  • Build a Strong Readership: Focus on growing your blog's traffic and building a loyal readership. Engage with your audience through comments, social media, and newsletters. The more targeted traffic you have, the higher the chances of earning commissions through affiliate links.
  • Promote Evergreen Content: Evergreen content remains relevant over time and continues to attract traffic. Identify blog posts that perform well organically and integrate affiliate links into them. This ensures a steady stream of potential customers.
  • Diversify Affiliate Programs: Don't rely solely on one affiliate program. Explore multiple programs to diversify your income streams and access a wider range of products or services to promote.
  • Stay Up-to-Date with Trends: Keep yourself informed about emerging trends and new products within your niche. Being ahead of the curve allows you to produce timely content and promote in-demand products, which can lead to increased conversions.

Read: Test Websites and Apps: A Lucrative Avenue for Earning Money Online

Bottom Line

Affiliate marketing offers bloggers a fantastic opportunity to monetize their content and generate a steady income. By strategically incorporating relevant affiliate links into your blog posts, you can earn commissions for every sale or action generated through your recommendations. Remember to focus on creating high-quality content, choosing the right affiliate programs, and promoting your blog effectively. With dedication, consistency, and a genuine passion for your niche, you can transform your blog into a profitable venture through affiliate marketing.

Money Unscripted Academy

Our courses:

1. How to master your money mindset

2. How to budget like a pro

3. How to build an emergency fund

4. How to pay off your debt

5. How to create multiple streams of income

6. Investment Guide: What’s your ‘Why’ in investing

7. Investment Guide: Investment basics

8. Investment Guide: Investment options

In today’s digital era, opportunities to make money online are abundant. One lesser-known but increasingly popular avenue is a website and app testing. Companies are constantly striving to improve their online platforms, and they rely on user feedback to refine their designs, functionality, and user experience. This has led to a rise in demand for individuals who can test websites and apps, providing valuable insights that help companies enhance their products. In this article, we delve into the world of website and app testing and explore how it can be a profitable venture for individuals seeking to make money online.

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Money Unscripted blog. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

What is Website and App Testing?

Website and app testing involve evaluating the usability, functionality, and overall user experience of a website or mobile application. Testers are tasked with identifying glitches, bugs, and areas of improvement, thereby helping businesses deliver a more polished and user-friendly product. This process typically involves providing feedback on navigation, responsiveness, layout, content, and other important aspects of the website or app.

Read: 20 Side hustle ideas

The Rise of User Testing as a Service

As the digital landscape becomes increasingly competitive, companies understand the importance of user feedback in creating products that meet the needs of their target audience. Consequently, user testing has emerged as a vital part of the development process. To streamline this process and gain diverse perspectives, many businesses have turned to user-testing as a service, seeking external individuals to provide valuable insights.

Read: Why You Should Start a Side Hustle

Benefits of Website and App Testing

  • Flexibility: Website and app testing offer incredible flexibility, allowing testers to choose assignments that fit their schedules. This makes it an ideal source of supplementary income for students, stay-at-home parents, or anyone looking for part-time work.
  • No Special Skills Required: Unlike other online ventures, website, and app testing does not demand specialized skills or technical expertise. Testers of all backgrounds and ages can participate.
  • Influence Product Development: Testers play a significant role in shaping digital products by providing constructive feedback. This sense of involvement can be gratifying and empowering.
  • Skill Enhancement: As testers evaluate various websites and apps, they naturally develop an eye for detail and critical thinking skills, which can be beneficial in other aspects of life.

Getting Started as a Website and App Tester

Becoming a website and app tester is relatively simple, and anyone with a computer or smartphone and an internet connection can participate. Here are the fundamental steps to get started:

  • Research reputable testing platforms: Numerous online platforms connect testers with companies in need of feedback. It is crucial to choose well-established and trustworthy platforms that offer a steady stream of testing opportunities.
  • Sign up and create a profile: After selecting a suitable testing platform, create an account and fill out a profile detailing your demographics, skills, and areas of interest. This information helps companies match you with relevant testing opportunities.
  • Qualify for tests: Some testing platforms require testers to complete a qualification process, which often involves a sample test or survey. This step ensures that testers possess the necessary skills to provide valuable feedback.
  • Start testing: Once qualified, testers gain access to available testing assignments. These assignments can range from evaluating a website's user interface to testing specific features of a mobile app. Testers are provided with clear instructions and tasks to complete during the testing process.

Read: How can I make my money last until payday?

Earning Potential and Rewards

The earning potential as a website and app tester varies depending on several factors, including the complexity of the test, the length of the assignment, and the platform used. While it may not replace a full-time income, website, and app testing can be a valuable source of supplemental income or a flexible way to earn money from home.

The compensation structure also varies among platforms. Some offer fixed payments per completed test, while others may employ a points-based system that can be redeemed for cash or gift cards. Additionally, certain tests may offer bonuses or incentives for particularly detailed or high-quality feedback.

Read: How do South Africans spend their money?

Tips for Successful Website and App Testing

To maximize your earning potential and become a sought-after tester, consider the following tips:

  • Pay attention to detail: Thoroughly evaluate every aspect of the website or app and provide detailed feedback. Companies value testers who can identify even the smallest issues.
  • Follow instructions: Read and understand the test instructions carefully. Ensure that you complete all the required tasks and provide feedback as requested.
  • Communicate effectively: Clearly articulate your observations and suggestions in a concise and organized manner. Use proper grammar and avoid vague or ambiguous statements.
  • Test across devices: It is essential to test websites and apps on various devices and operating systems to ensure compatibility and functionality across different platforms.
  • Stay proactive: Actively seek out testing opportunities and regularly check for new assignments. Consistent participation can lead to more opportunities and increased earnings.

Read: Difference between Savings Account and Money Market Account

Bottom Line

Website and app testing provide a unique and flexible way to make money online. By leveraging your skills and providing valuable feedback to companies, you can contribute to the development of user-friendly and robust digital platforms. While it may not be a get-rich-quick scheme, website and app testing can be a rewarding endeavor, both financially and intellectually. So, if you have a keen eye for detail and a passion for improving digital experiences, consider exploring this avenue to earn money online.

Money Unscripted Academy

Our courses:

1. How to master your money mindset

2. How to budget like a pro

3. How to build an emergency fund

4. How to pay off your debt

5. How to create multiple streams of income

6. Investment Guide: What’s your ‘Why’ in investing

7. Investment Guide: Investment basics

8. Investment Guide: Investment options

Life can be a wild ride, especially when we’re juggling our ambitions, dreams, and the constant buzz of work demands. But here’s the thing: it’s crucial to find that delicate balance between work and everything else that makes life worth living. That’s right, we’re talking about work-life balance, the key to unlocking a fulfilling and well-rounded existence. So, buckle up and get ready to discover the secrets to living your best life!

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Money Unscripted blog. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

What is Work-Life Balance?

Work-life balance is all about finding harmony between your professional commitments and the other aspects of your life that bring you joy and fulfillment. It’s about striking the perfect blend between work, family, friends, hobbies, health, and relaxation. Balancing these areas ensures that you don’t burn out, compromise your relationships, or miss out on the beauty of life.

Read: How to improve your financial literacy skills

Why is Work-Life Balance Important?

You might be wondering, “Why should I care about work-life balance?” Well, let’s break it down for you:

Mental and Physical Well-being: Long hours and excessive work-related stress can take a toll on your mental and physical health. By creating space for personal activities and self-care, you can rejuvenate your mind and body, reducing the risk of burnout and boosting your overall well-being.

Enhanced Productivity: Believe it or not, a well-rested and happy individual is more productive. Taking breaks, pursuing hobbies, and spending time with loved ones can recharge your batteries and boost your efficiency when you return to work.

Stronger Relationships: Nurturing relationships with family and friends is crucial for a fulfilling life. Balancing work and personal life allows you to invest time in your loved ones, building stronger bonds and creating lasting memories.

Pursuing Passions: Life is not just about work; it’s about discovering and pursuing your passions. When you strike a balance, you have the freedom to explore hobbies, interests, and creative endeavors that ignite your soul.

Read: 10 Signs a job posting is fake. Is it a scam!

Tips for Achieving Work-Life Balance

Now that you understand the importance of work-life balance, let’s dive into some practical tips to help you achieve it:

Set Clear Boundaries: Define clear boundaries between your work and personal life. Establish specific working hours and stick to them. Avoid checking work emails or taking calls during your personal time.

Prioritize and Delegate: Learn to prioritize tasks and delegate when possible. Focus on what truly matters and let go of nonessential responsibilities. This way, you can create more time for activities that bring you joy.

Schedule Time for Yourself: Make self-care a non-negotiable part of your routine. Whether it’s exercising, meditating, reading, or pursuing a hobby, schedule dedicated time for yourself. Remember, you deserve it!

Learn to Say No: It’s okay to say no sometimes. Overcommitting yourself can lead to stress and overwhelm. Learn to set boundaries and decline requests that don’t align with your priorities or values.

Unplug and Recharge: Technology has made it difficult to disconnect, but it’s essential to unplug from work regularly. Set aside device-free time, especially during meals and before bedtime. Allow yourself to recharge and be fully present in the moment.

Foster Supportive Relationships: Surround yourself with people who understand the importance of work-life balance. Cultivate relationships that support and encourage your pursuit of a balanced lifestyle.

Read: First Job? Take control of your finances from the beginning

Embracing South African Vibes:

In the land of beautiful landscapes, diverse cultures, and vibrant communities, South Africa offers unique opportunities to infuse your work-life balance with local flavor.

  1. Explore the Outdoors: Take advantage of South Africa’s breathtaking scenery. Engage in outdoor activities like hiking, surfing, wildlife safaris, or simply spending time at the beach. Nature’s therapeutic touch can rejuvenate your mind and body.
  2. Embrace Cultural Diversity: Immerse yourself in the rich heritage and diverse cultures across South Africa. Attend local festivals, learn a new language, or savor traditional cuisine. Embracing different cultures broadens your perspective and enriches your life.
  3. Connect and Give Back: South Africa’s spirit of Ubuntu encourages communal harmony. Engage in volunteer work or community initiatives to contribute positively to society and make lasting connections.
  4. Music and Dance: South Africa’s vibrant music and dance scene are infectious. Attend live concerts, join dance classes, or explore local music genres. Let the rhythm energize your soul and uplift your spirits.

The Bottom Line

Remember, achieving work-life balance is an ongoing process. It requires self-awareness, prioritization, and a willingness to make conscious choices that align with your values and goals. Embrace the journey, and don’t be too hard on yourself when things don’t go as planned. Balance takes practice, but with time and effort, you can find your groove.

It’s time to take charge of your life, find that work-life balance, and live a fulfilling, joyful, and purposeful existence. You’ve got this!

Money Unscripted Academy

Our courses:

1. How to master your money mindset

2. How to budget like a pro

3. How to build an emergency fund

4. How to pay off your debt

5. How to create multiple streams of income

6. Investment Guide: What’s your ‘Why’ in investing

7. Investment Guide: Investment basics

8. Investment Guide: Investment options

In the dynamic world of public relations, Penelope Shandlale has emerged as a force to be reckoned with. With a keen understanding of integrated organizational communication and a passion for building genuine relationships, Penelope has carved a niche for herself as a distinguished public relations specialist. Penelope Shandlale serves as an inspiration to aspiring public relations professionals, reminding us that with determination, genuine relationships, and a willingness to adapt, success is within reach.

As we delve into her career journey, insights, and aspirations, Penelope sheds light on the challenges and triumphs of her profession, emphasizing the importance of authenticity and adaptability.

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Money Unscripted blog. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

1. What qualifications do you hold?

I have a BA Communications Degree obtained from the North-West University as well as a Postgraduate BA Honours in Integrated Organisational Communication qualification from the University of South Africa.

2. What does your job entail (day- to-day-activities)?

From a client-side of things, I spend the day liaising between our agencies and my internal clients, collating media pitches to better position them as thought leaders in their space, scheduling them for interviews, and preparing them for these opportunities. I also spend time co-creating article ideas and content plans with our lead support agency and checking on the progress of the different portfolios I am responsible for. As you can see most of my day is spent communicating with various stakeholders to ensure that the brand looks favourable in the eyes of the public.

3. What is the most challenging thing about your job?

The most challenging thing is experimenting (and being okay with this) and moving away from the tried and tested methods. What I mean by this is that in our experimenting, this might fall flat on our target market’s end, and they could simply miss the message, and this would make our efforts seem fruitless.

Shandlale is not afraid to push boundaries and experiment with new approaches. She acknowledges that moving away from tried and tested methods can be daunting, but she embraces the opportunity for growth and accepts that not every endeavor will yield immediate success.

4. What is the most rewarding thing about your job?

The most rewarding part is seeing everything come together. It is an amazing moment to be able to look back at a project or a portfolio and see where it all started and where it is currently tracking and being able to boldly claim that it is because of your efforts.

Read: 10 Signs a job posting is fake. Is it a scam!

5. Why did you choose this career path?

I honestly didn’t pick this, a friend of mine saw the job specification and forced me to apply. She literally sat by my desk and made sure I applied and submitted before she walked off. I owe her so much because I feel like this is such a great fit!

Shandlale now wholeheartedly embraces her career and advises others to find a path that resonates with their true selves, blurring the line between work and passion.

6. What’s something an outsider wouldn’t know about your industry?

It’s all about relationships. How you interact with people and the relationships you build and maintain are integral to success.

Building and nurturing relationships is at the core of Shandlale's approach to both personal and professional success. She recognizes the importance of genuine connections and believes that fostering strong interpersonal ties is instrumental in achieving one's goals.

Read: First Job? Take control of your finances from the beginning

7. How would your 10-year-old self react to what you do now?

I think she would be super impressed. She would be happy that I fulfilled her dream.

8. What career advice would you give to your younger self?

Do your research and find a career that resonates with who you are so that it never really feels like work.

Read: Retirement planning: Options you can look into

9. What’s one work-related thing you want to accomplish this year?

I want to expand into social media management, learn all there is to that and marry that with reputation management.

Looking toward the future, Shandlale envisions expanding her expertise in social media management and combining it with her aptitude for reputation management. The prospect of working with diverse stakeholders and staying abreast of the ever-evolving social media landscape excites her, propelling her toward continuous growth and learning.

Read: Four ways social media affects your spending habits

10. When you started your current job, what most surprised you?

The number of stakeholders I would have to work with and keep informed.

She believes that genuine connections and effective interpersonal skills are integral to achieving one's goals in any industry. With her natural ability to connect with others, Penelope has fostered valuable alliances that have propelled her forward.

11. If money were no object, what would you do with your life?

I would travel to destinations I could only dream of and spend every minute watching my son grow.

12. Have you heard of an Emergency Fund? Do you, have it?

Yes, I do have one.

An emergency fund is a stash of money set aside to cover the financial surprises life throws your way. These unexpected events can be stressful and costly. You can also tap into your emergency fund during a family emergency or when your pet needs medical care.

Money Unscripted

Read: Why you need an emergency fund

13. Four financial lessons every kid should know?

  • Prioritize your emergency fund: Do not slack when it comes to putting money away for a rainy day. You never know when the day will come, it’s always best to be prepared.
  • Do not neglect yourself: Yes you need to save, but always work in a treat every few months to reward yourself.
  • It’s never too early to save for retirement: Seriously, we are getting old and it’s always best to start planning for this earlier on.
  • Ask for help: Our own knowledge of finances can only get us so far, reach out to accredited financial advisers to partner with you on your financial journey. Find the perfect adviser who gets you and where you want to go and team up.

Read: How to improve your financial literacy skills

14. If you could do it all over again, would you pursue the same career? Why or why not?

Yes! It is my perfect fit and the skills I have now can easily be transferred to other roles within marketing.

When asked if she sees herself pursuing a different career path, Shandlale confidently asserts that her current role aligns perfectly with her skills and passion. The versatility of her expertise allows for seamless transitions within the broader marketing field, making her feel right at home.

15. Do you think your job will be around in the next ten years or in the future?

Yes, like I said it’s all about relationships and forming genuine connections – this can never be imitated.

Bonus question: How do you feel about black tax?

Ooh, so two-part on this one. On the one hand, I think it makes it difficult to move forward if you must stop and make sure everyone is caught up and have to be responsible for a lot of people. Simply churning out money isn’t the solution.

Read: Navigating financial stress: Protecting your mental health like a pro

On the other hand, I understand giving back and being able to change the situation at home and make things better. I do believe this can be done and managed well, instead of simply giving money maybe you can take up the responsibility of paying someone’s school fees so that what you do is sustainable. Maybe sustainability and your efforts to make a long-lasting change are key to changing the narrative on Black Tax.

In closing

Penelope Shandlale's journey in public relations stands as a testament to the power of genuine connections and adaptability. Her passion for building strong relationships, combined with her expertise in integrated organizational communication, positions her as a respected figure in the industry. As she continues to grow and explore new avenues within marketing, Penelope's unwavering commitment to authenticity serves as an inspiration to professionals across various fields.

Connect with Penelope:

Instagram – penelope_shandlale

LinkedIn – Penelope Lungile Shandlale

Money Unscripted Academy

Our courses:

1. How to master your money mindset

2. How to budget like a pro

3. How to build an emergency fund

4. How to pay off your debt

5. How to create multiple streams of income

6. Investment Guide: What’s your ‘Why’ in investing

7. Investment Guide: Investment basics

8. Investment Guide: Investment options

Dr. Michael Modiba is a highly accomplished individual in the field of Information Technology (IT), possessing a Ph.D. in Economic & Management Sciences with Business Administration, and a wealth of professional experience. With a strong passion for cutting-edge technologies and a dedication to his work, Dr. Modiba has established himself as a leading authority in the IT industry.

As a leader in the IT field, Dr. Modiba has also mentored and trained many aspiring professionals, helping them to develop the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in this rapidly-evolving industry. With his deep understanding of technology and his passion for creating meaningful change, he continues to be a driving force in the world of Information Technology.

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Money Unscripted blog. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

He currently serves as an Oracle Database Infrastructure Lead, responsible for designing and maintaining large-scale database systems. He is highly respected among his peers and is often sought after for his expertise and insights. Through his work, Dr. Modiba has not only advanced the field of IT but has also played a significant role in shaping the way we interact with technology in our daily lives.

1. What qualifications do you hold?

I hold a few qualifications namely:

  • Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D. ) in Economic & Management Sciences with Business Administration, North West University, Thesis: “A Digital Transformation Framework for South African Financial Service Providers”.
  • BSc (Hons) Degree in Digital Technology – Cum Laude, Technological University, Dublin Ireland.
  • Magister Technologiae (MTech) Information Networks, Tshwane University of Technology
  • Bachelor of Technology (B-Tech Degree) Information Technology Communication Networks – Cum Laude, Tshwane University of Technology.
  • National Diploma in Information Technology Communication Networks, Tshwane University of Technology.

2. What does your job entail (day- to-day-activities)?

I spend a significant amount of time in meetings with stakeholders and members of my team; I lead a team of Oracle database cloud engineers, and we are responsible for deploying and supporting databases on-prem and cloud environments. We work on a variety of projects; therefore, my role is to lead the team, support the team, ensure plans and schedules for various activities are in place, engage vendors, provide solutions to customer problems, and ensure engineers follow and apply best engineering practices.

3. What is the most challenging thing about your job?

For starters, inheriting a team is challenging on its own. You are hired into an established team and must produce results with that team. Also, managing multiple personalities, communication styles, and work habits is one of the most difficult aspects of leading a team. Each team member has their own set of talents and weaknesses, and it is my responsibility as a leader to balance their needs while also fostering a healthy and productive team culture. Furthermore, dealing with conflicts and solving difficulties, as well as delivering constructive feedback and keeping the team motivated and engaged, can be difficult.

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Redefining Public Relations through Authentic Connections with Penelope Shandlale

The story of Dr. Michael Modiba an Oracle Database Infrastructure Lead (Ph.D.)

4. What is the most rewarding thing about your job?

The most satisfying aspect of leading a team is witnessing the team's growth and success. It is highly satisfying for me and the team members when a team works effectively together and achieves its goals. Mentoring and assisting team members to attain their full potential and achieve their own goals is rewarding. To become a strong leader, one has to inspire personal and professional growth, and it's really rewarding to see the team members improve and prosper under my leadership. Finally, earning the respect and admiration of my teammates is quite rewarding in and of itself.

"To become a strong leader, one has to inspire personal and professional growth"

Dr Michael Modiba

5. Why did you choose this career path?

Growing up, I wanted to be a medical doctor, but that changed when my aunt, who worked for a white family back then, they gave her a laptop and a pair of soccer boots. She then gave them to me, and that's when I found a computer fascinating, and I thought to myself, "I'd like to study computers." I couldn't play soccer because my parents were both educators, and they insisted that I focus on school rather than anything else, so when I went to varsity, I chose IT as a career because of the fascination sparked by the laptop my aunt brought home.

6. What’s something an outsider wouldn’t know about your industry?

I work in the banking sector's operations section, which is both fascinating and challenging. One thing that an outsider would not know is the work done in the background to bring services to customers; we work long hours, not 8am-5pm as people think, and we work very late at night to ensure the bank is operational and customers can transact; most system changes/updates are done late at night or early in the morning. Be prepared to work long hours. It's always delightful to see our systems online all of the time.

7. How would your 10-year-old self react to what you do now?

Mmmmm, a 10-year-old me would be fascinated by the IT world today, especially because the world is becoming increasingly digital, and I believe I would already be more interested in technology and computers, as I was when my aunt gave me an old laptop to play with. I'd be astounded by the widespread usage of smartphones, Wi-Fi, and tablets, as well as how individuals have instant access to limitless knowledge.

In comparison to my childhood playing more traditional games with friends, I would be more interested in the use of video calls, streaming, gaming, and virtual reality technology, as well as the enormous number of gadgets that are now available.

8. What career advice would you give to your younger self?

I would tell my younger self don't be hesitant to seek assistance from those in your field. Don't be afraid to seek assistance or guidance when you need it. There is no shame in seeking assistance, and it is frequently the most effective method to overcome difficulties and achieve success. We fail constantly in life, whether it's falling short of a personal goal, or failing to fulfill the expectations at work or school. Thomas Edison famously failed over 1000 times before succeeding in creating a long-lasting lightbulb. It is through failure that we learn from our mistakes, adapt our approach, and return better and stronger the next time. Always ask for help from those in your field and learn from their mistakes and yours.

9. What's one work-related thing you want to accomplish this year?

There is a lot of buzz about banks moving services to a public cloud, and I'd like to finish my cloud certifications this year. I've completed one foundation course and hope to finish the next level this year, as well as SRE (Site reliability engineering) certification. Because of the rapid advancement of technology, the banking industry, like many others, necessitates continuous learning.

10. When you started your current job, what most surprised you?

The complexity of systems and technology with the bank, as well as the amount of backend work required to provide services to customers, I began to appreciate banking, as it is not as simple as it appears that ATMs and branches simply run without technology challenges. They say that not knowing is dangerous, and I agree; as humans, we often reason with emotions rather than comprehend how things function.

11. If money were no object, what would you do with your life?

I've been to a few places throughout the world, and I have appreciated and cherished the experience; so, I'd tour the world. I thoroughly loved my stay in Spain and France. Traveling the world would undoubtedly be at the top of my priority list, places like Portugal and Italy to name a few.

12. Have you heard of an Emergency Fund? Do you, have it?

Yes, I've heard about it, and I have some emergency savings plans. I follow the 70% & 30% rule, which means that I save roughly 30% of my income for rainy days and this principle has helped me to start a student accommodation business too.

Read: Why you need an emergency fund

13. Four financial lessons every kid should know?

  1. Budgeting: Learn how to make and follow a budget. Understanding the concept of necessities vs wants, means some things require time to save up for.
  2. Saving: From a young age, learn about the value of saving money. Understand how interest works and how to develop a savings plan for your short and long-term goals.
  3. Debt: Learn about the perils of debt and how to prevent them. Understand the difference between good and bad debt.
  4. Investing: Learn about the fundamentals of investing, such as risk and return, diversification, and the importance of the stock market.

Read: How to improve your financial literacy skills

14. If you could do it all over again, would you pursue the same career? Why or why not?

For me, the choice would still be between IT and medicine; perhaps if I hadn't been intrigued by a laptop at a young age, but I believe I would have become a medical doctor if the technology bug hadn't bitten me. However, more technology is increasingly being used in the medical field, with artificial intelligence (AI) being a prime example.

15. Do you think your job will be around in the next ten years or in the future?

Yes, I believe lead engineering roles will be around for a long time, although the role might be called something else in the future. The reason for such roles is that machines lack emotions, empathy, and leadership abilities, to mention a few. As a result, humans will be required to fill roles that require such talents. Leading requires understanding that people differ and that varied approaches are required; not one size fits all.

Bonus question

How do you feel about black tax?

Concerning the so-called "black tax," there are opposing views. Personally, I believe that the black tax reflects a strong sense of need to support families, and if one is in a position to aid others, I do so without hesitation, and I believe it is critical to contribute to the progress of my family and community in any manner that I can. There is no shame in assisting if you are able; many individuals require assistance. The economy is awful, and power outages exacerbate the situation.

Connect here:

LinkedIn: Dr. Michael Modiba



Money Unscripted Academy

Our courses:

1. How to master your money mindset

2. How to budget like a pro

3. How to build an emergency fund

4. How to pay off your debt

5. How to create multiple streams of income

6. Investment Guide: What’s your ‘Why’ in investing

7. Investment Guide: Investment basics

8. Investment Guide: Investment options

Retirement planning is a critical component of financial management. As South Africans, we have several options to save for retirement. This article will explore three common options, namely Retirement Annuities (RAs), Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs), and Preservation Funds. We’ll discuss the pros and cons of each, who should use them, how to choose one, contribution limits, tax implications, and how to maximize your savings.

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Money Unscripted blog. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

Retirement Annuities (RAs)

Retirement Annuities (RAs) are a popular option for retirement savings in South Africa. RAs are designed to provide a steady income stream during retirement. The contributions to the RA are tax-deductible up to certain limits, which means that you can save on your tax bill while saving for retirement.

Pros:

  • Tax-deductible contributions reduce your taxable income.
  • The investment returns earned in the RA are tax-free.
  • The retirement income generated by the RA is tax-efficient.
  • The money invested in an RA is protected from creditors.

Cons:

  • Withdrawals from an RA are limited until you reach retirement age.
  • The fees for RAs can be high, which can erode your returns.

Read: It’s Time to Consider a Retirement Annuity

Who should use them and how to choose one?

An RA is suitable for anyone who wants to save for retirement and reduce their tax bill. When choosing an RA, it’s essential to consider the fees, investment options, and the track record of the provider. It’s also crucial to choose a provider that aligns with your investment goals and risk profile.

Contribution Limits:

The maximum contribution limit for an RA is 27.5% of your taxable income or R350 000 per annum, whichever is lower.

Tax Implications:

The contributions to an RA are tax-deductible up to certain limits, which means you can reduce your taxable income. The investment returns earned in the RA are also tax-free. However, when you retire and start receiving income from the RA, it will be taxed as income.

How to maximize your savings using an RA:

To maximize your savings, you should contribute as much as you can, up to the contribution limit. It’s also essential to choose a low-cost RA provider with a proven track record of good returns.

Example:

Suppose you earn R600,000 per annum and contribute R165,000 (27.5% of your taxable income) to your RA. You can reduce your taxable income to R435,000, which will lower your tax bill.

Read: How Much Should I Save For Retirement

Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs)

Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs) are a relatively new option for saving in South Africa. TFSAs are designed to encourage South Africans to save by allowing them to save tax-free. The contributions to TFSAs are made with after-tax money, but the investment returns are tax-free.

Pros:

  • Tax-free investment returns.
  • No tax on withdrawals.
  • No restrictions on withdrawals.

Cons:

  • The contribution limit is relatively low compared to RAs.
  • You cannot claim a tax deduction for contributions.

Read: Tax-free Investment Account: frequently asked questions

Who should use them and how to choose one?

TFSAs are suitable for anyone who wants to save money tax-free. When choosing a TFSA, it's essential to consider the fees, investment options, and the track record of the provider. It's also crucial to choose a provider that aligns with your investment goals and risk profile.

Contribution Limits:

The maximum contribution limit for a TFSA is R36,000 per annum or R500,000 over your lifetime.

Tax Implications:

The investment returns earned in the TFSA are tax-free, and there is no tax on withdrawals. However, you cannot claim a tax deduction for contributions.

How to maximize your savings using a TFSA:

To maximize your savings, you should contribute as much as you can, up to the contribution limit. It's also essential to choose a low-cost TFSA provider with a proven track record of good returns.

Example:

Suppose you contribute R36,000 to your TFSA each year for ten years. If you earn a return of 10%, your total investment value would be R558,974. If you had invested the same amount in a taxable investment, you would have paid taxes on the investment returns, reducing your overall investment value.

Preservation Funds

Preservation Funds are designed for individuals who have resigned from their jobs and want to preserve their retirement savings until they reach retirement age. Preservation Funds allow you to keep your retirement savings invested and growing while delaying your retirement benefits until you reach retirement age.

Pros:

  • You can preserve your retirement savings until retirement age.
  • The investment returns earned in the Preservation Fund are tax-free.

Cons:

  • You cannot access your retirement savings until you reach retirement age.
  • Fees for Preservation Funds can be high.

Who should use them and how to choose one?

Preservation Funds are suitable for individuals who have resigned from their jobs and want to preserve their retirement savings. When choosing a Preservation Fund, it's essential to consider the fees, investment options, and track record of the provider. It's also crucial to choose a provider that aligns with your investment goals and risk profile.

Contribution Limits:

There are no contribution limits for Preservation Funds, as they are designed to preserve your existing retirement savings.

Tax Implications:

The investment returns earned in the Preservation Fund are tax-free. When you retire and start receiving income from the Preservation Fund, it will be taxed as income.

How to maximize your savings using a Preservation Fund:

To maximize your savings, you should leave your retirement savings invested in the Preservation Fund until you reach retirement age. It's also essential to choose a low-cost Preservation Fund provider with a proven track record of good returns.

Example:

Suppose you resigned from your job and had R1 million in your retirement fund. You could transfer your retirement savings into a Preservation Fund, where it would continue to grow tax-free until you reach retirement age.

Bottom Line

Retirement Annuities, Tax-Free Savings Accounts, and Preservation Funds are all viable options for retirement planning in South Africa. It's crucial to consider the pros and cons of each option, contribution limits, tax implications, and how to maximize your savings. By making informed decisions and starting early, you can secure your financial future and enjoy a comfortable retirement.

Money Unscripted Academy

Our courses:

1. How to master your money mindset

2. How to budget like a pro

3. How to build an emergency fund

4. How to pay off your debt

5. How to create multiple streams of income

6. Investment Guide: What’s your ‘Why’ in investing

7. Investment Guide: Investment basics

8. Investment Guide: Investment options

Charles Gladden Ngobeni is an endurance driver at VW South Africa, he has a unique job that allows him to drive prototype cars and provide feedback on any faults he encounters. Here are some questions that he often gets asked about his job:

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Money Unscripted blog. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

1. What qualifications do you hold?

I have a diploma in sports management that I obtained from Tshwane University of Technology in 2018.

2. What does your job entail (day-to-day activities)?

As an endurance driver, I test-drive prototype cars and collect data on any faults I encounter. I then write reports about these faults and make sure that they are fixed before the cars go into production and are sold to the public.

3. What is the most challenging thing about your job?

The most challenging part of my job is the unpredictability of the cars that we drive. Since they have never been tested before, anything can happen while driving, such as engine failure, technology malfunctions, or accidents on the road. Driving left-hand steering cars, which are the majority of the prototype cars I drive, is also challenging, as they come from Germany, and we drive on the right side in South Africa.

4. What is the most rewarding thing about your job?

The most rewarding thing about my job is that it doesn’t feel like work at all, instead, it’s like getting paid to do what I love, which is driving new cars that I wouldn’t be able to afford or that haven’t been released on the market yet.

5. Why did you choose this path?

I think this career path chose me! I’ve always been fascinated by cars. I grew up around mechanics who were always fixing cars. When I went to be tested for this job, I had already been working in a related field, but I jumped at the chance to work as an endurance driver.

6. What's something an outsider wouldn't know about your industry?

You need a lot of skill and discipline to be an endurance driver. Most of the prototype cars we drive have left-hand steering, which can be challenging for someone used to driving on the right-hand side of the road. You also need to have a lot of car knowledge so that you can identify any faults and know how to fix them.

7. How would your 10-year-old self react to what you do now?

He would be delighted and impressed. I'm doing what he loves and gets paid for it.

8. What career advice would you give to your younger self?

Don't wait for opportunities to come to you, create your own opportunities, and most importantly create multiple income streams for yourself. Doing so will allow you to spend your time doing what you love.

9. What's one work-related thing you want to accomplish this year?

I want to focus on my own business. For me to do that I'll have to work harder and save up more, so that I can be able to invest in it.

10. When you started your current job what most surprised you?

I was surprised by how easy it was for my trainer to overtake other cars while driving a left-hand steering vehicle. I was also amazed at how fast electric cars accelerate and how silent they are on the road.

11. If money were no object what would you do with your life?

If I weren't an endurance driver, I would pursue music as a rapper and beat producer. I'm a self-taught beatmaker, and I enjoy working in various genres of music. Music is my passion, and I'll always find a way to incorporate it into my life, whether as a hobby or a career.

12. Have you heard of an emergency fund? Do you have it?

I have not heard of it, this is the first time hearing of it.

An emergency fund is a stash of money set aside to cover the financial surprises life throws your way. These unexpected events can be stressful and costly.

You can also tap into your emergency fund during a family emergency or when your pet needs medical care.

Read: Why You Need an Emergency Fund

13. Four financial lessons every kid should know?

My advice would be to do what you love, even if the money isn't there at first. When you're doing something you love, it doesn't feel like work, and you'll be much happier in the long run. I would also say that it's important to start young and build a foundation for the things that interest you. Don't settle for a job that isn't secure, and try to create multiple income streams so that you can have the freedom to pursue your passions. Finally, I would recommend that you focus on assets and net worth rather than material things and liabilities.

14. If you could do it again, would you pursue the same career? Why or why not?

I would pursue the same career, be it in sport or endurance driving, without the politics and negative aspects of this job that I have come across while inside the industry. If everything was done on merit rather than background and skin color playing a part that favors some over others, it would make a significant difference.

15. Do you think your job will be around in the next 10 years?

I see a future for endurance driving, especially since companies like Volkswagen have invested millions in this field. It helps companies avoid losing money since testing their cars before launching them reduces the risk of recalls and customer complaints. Moreover, endurance driving prepares companies for the future, especially since they are testing electric cars.

Money Unscripted Academy

Here are the courses:

1. How to master your money mindset

2. How to budget like a pro

3. How to build an emergency fund

4. How to pay off your debt

5. How to create multiple streams of income

6. Investment Guide: What’s your ‘Why’ in investing

7. Investment Guide: Investment basics

8. Investment Guide: Investment options