The ending of a long-time business relationship is often a time of difficult emotions. This has been true for me this month after learning that the local newspaper will no longer run my weekly columns.
The Rapid City Journal, owned by Lee Enterprises, has been cutting staff and content, including several local columnists, for some time. Over the past six months they reduced my column from weekly to semi-weekly to monthly. Finally they decided to eliminate their Sunday Business section, where my column appeared.
The manner in which I was dismissed was short, abrupt, and thankless. There was no recognition of the 27-year relationship or any opportunity for a farewell column. Nor was there any gesture of appreciation for having met deadlines week after week with publication-ready, cutting-edge personal financial advice provided without charge. Of course, that hurts.
I do want to thank the Journal for giving me a platform to express my passion around personal finance. I know personally that the column made a difference in the lives of scores of people. It also met a need in me to employ my self-expression and creativity to teach people about finance and investing. I want to especially thank Dan Daly, who worked closely with me for about 10 years when he was the business editor.
For now I will continue to write the weekly column. It will continue to be published on the Kahler Financial Group website and YouTube channel and appear online and in print in the Watertown Public Opinion. It is also picked up periodically by NASDAQ, Forbes, Time, USA Today, and other similar publications. It is emailed to subscribers who sign up through my website.
I am also open to widening my distribution to other periodicals that may want to run the column weekly or pick it up periodically. If you know of any print or online media that would be interested, please let me know.
One of the frustrations of financial planning as a profession is the challenge of helping people start to build healthy money habits early in their working lives. The irony is that those just starting out are in serious need of information on how to manage money and begin investing for the future. Yet at that stage in life, they can’t afford to engage a financial planner.
My way to educate and help people such as these has been to share my knowledge through several co-authored books and in my weekly columns. Over the years, many readers have written to ask questions, suggest topics, or tell me that information in various columns has been helpful to them. I greatly value the verbal and written feedback I receive. (Though it is still a little embarrassing to realize that the most feedback I ever received was on a column about cats.)
Wise money management includes preparing for the future, but remembering that all our plans are subject to inevitable changes. This is one of those changes for me. What has not changed is my commitment to teaching people how to build healthier relationships with money.