In House - The FindLaw Corporate Counsel Blog

How to Get a Piece When Your Boss Makes $9 Billion in Two Days

So Amazon's Jeff Bezos made $9 billion -- in two days. Not that anybody's counting, but the world's richest man is now worth about $132 billion.

He may not hit the all-time richest mark -- Rockefeller's $318 billion net worth -- but it raises questions. Like, how can you make a billion dollars?

That's not going to happen, so think instead about how you can get some of that from your company. Here are some ideas:

Ask for a Raise

When it comes to asking for a raise, timing is everything. If your company just made an extra billion dollars, give or take 999 million, that would be a good time.

But you don't want to be too transparent. According to Forbes, the three best times to ask are:

  • When you take on a major assignment.
  • When you have just finished a major project.
  • Three months before your annual review.

Of course, this all assumes that you have been doing a great job. The scripture says no raises for the wicked, or something like that.

Invest in the Company

You don't have to play the market to be a stockholder -- which is Bezo's secret. If your company offers stock to its employees, get some soon.

Stock option plans typically allow employees to buy company shares at a discount. It may take time for the options to vest and then to sell them, but you're making money on paper in the meantime.

"Employers offer two kinds of stock options: incentive stock options (ISOs) and non-qualified stock options (NSOs)," writes Rebecca Safier. "ISOs are usually better because they have some tax advantages."

It will take time and you probably won't make a billion. But if you had bought $1,000 of Amazon stock when the company went public, your shares would be worth more than $350,000 in less than 20 years.

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