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Good Will Report

Will Chen's Monthly Newsletter
Issue 31 | April 2009
1.425.301.9652 | will@willchen.ca
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Keith Olsen Visits Microsoft

[Keith Olsen, Producer]One of the perks of working at a company like Microsoft is that prominent, successful people are often invited to give talks. On March 17, it was a privilege that Keith Olsen, a long time and one of the most prolific Hollywood producer, came to visit to give us a talk on how he became a successful producer, and to share some stories over the years.

Although I realize that probably not everyone (like myself) is excited in being successful at producing music, the points he made are applicable to being successful at all avenues of life. I would like to take this time to share some of points he made:

Success is for the FIERCE! Tenacity leads to success. He asked the audience, "How many of you practice for 8 hours a day?" It takes 10,000 hours to really become an expert, it is akin to how Michael Jordan practices basketball and Tiger Wood practices golf everyday.

Keys to success: education, musicianship, expertise, experience, networking. Become proficient at several intruments and master at least one. Know the rules, and apply them, AND know when to break them. Know the limitations. Never stop learning and be open to other ideas. Get as much hands-on as possible -- it's okay to work for free. Meet as many people as possible.

Maybe you are not a musician, then how can you apply these principles to your success? Are you willing to be tenacious to be successful?

Getting Started with Real Estate Investing... Again

Some of you may watch the news or listen to the radio talk about the "global economic downturn," and how it's the reason for certain things to take place or for some key economic statistics to go one way. In particular, the US media continue to cover doom-and-gloom stories about major companies' layoffs. It is perhaps not my place to ask people to stay calm amid the storm, but what is happening does remind me of a quote by Warren Buffet in Berkshire Hathaway's 2004 Chairman's Letter: "... be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful."

I have begun looking at simple key economic factors in various states in the US. I was looking primarily in the employment data, and noticed that Nevada unemployment rate has been going up steadily, up to 10.4% in March, while the labor force is no longer growing over the last few months; the story is similar in Arizona, where the unemployment rate is estimated at 7.8%. In California, even though the labor force continues to grow, unemployment rate is estimated at 11.2% in March.

Today, I am not quite ready to make an investment into a job market that is continuing to decline, which may cause the salary to decrease and rents to decline as well; however, I am taking the first steps to be ready when the market condition changes.

Market research is the first step to excellent real estate investing. People often ask me, why do you invest in this city and not another? Why don't you invest where you live? The truth is, there has to be a future in the city I invest in. Now that I have established my personal goals and investment goals, does investing here take me closer or away from my goals? The market research helps to answer that question and therefore help manage the risks of investing.

Vancouver Sun Run

[A shot of me at the Sun Run Finish Line]Julie has encouraged me to take part in the Vancouver Sun Run this year, and I decided to train for it starting mid-March.

The Vancouver Sun Run is a 10-kilometer run in Vancouver, BC, and this year it attracted an impressive and record-breaking 59,179 people to challenge their fitness levels. I would like to congratulate Julie for her 67 minute finish, amazing for a first time run!

As for myself, I have decided to challenge myself by making it a goal to complete a marathon in 2010. In talking about that, my buddy Jason challenged me to take on a half marathon later this year, a 21-kilometer run. So now I am learning more about running and have set up a new fitness routine where 2 to 3 times a week I invite my friends to come for runs with me in the afternoons for a break from work!

Before we part, I'd like to offer you a quote I came across while researching for this newsletter. Michael Jordan is truly one of the greatest athletes of all time, and he offers some sage advice on being successful, both on and off the court. How surprised you would be when you choose to be energetic and motivated as you finish this quote! Enjoy a great month!

"Obstacles don't have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don't turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it." -- Michael Jordan

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