TIME Food & Drink

This Is Warren Buffett’s Secret to Staying Young

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett speaks at an event called, "Detroit Homecoming" on Sept. 18, 2014 in Detroit.
Bill Pugliano—Getty Images Billionaire investor Warren Buffett speaks at an event called, "Detroit Homecoming" on Sept. 18, 2014 in Detroit.

Yes, seriously

The world’s most successful investor says “eating like a six-year-old” is the key to his youth.

Warren Buffett, 84, told Fortune’s Patricia Sellers this week that he’s one-quarter Coke. “If I eat 2700 calories a day, a quarter of that is Coca-Cola,” he said. “I drink at least five 12-ounce servings. I do it everyday.” Buffett, by the way, owns $16 billion in Coca-Cola stock.

Read about the rest of Buffett’s bizarre eating habits at Fortune.com.

TIME Companies

TJ Maxx and Marshalls to Follow Walmart in Pay Bumps

U.S. workers will see pay increased to at least $9 an hour starting in June

(NEW YORK) — The owner of T.J. Maxx, Marshalls and HomeGoods stores became the latest retailer to boost pay for its U.S. workers, putting pressure on other chains to do the same.

TJX Cos. said Wednesday that it will increase pay for its U.S. workers to at least $9 an hour starting in June. The announcement came a week after Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said it would increase starting wages for its U.S. employees to at least $9 per hour by April and by at least $10 by Feb. 2016. Home furnishings retailer IKEA and Gap clothing chain also have raised pay recently.

John Challenger, CEO of global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc., said the moves could create a domino effect in which other companies follow suit in order to compete for top talent.

“Other retailers may have no other choice but to follow,” he said. “The pool of available labor is starting to shrink and it will take more than a store discount to attract the best of available candidates.”

The moves by the major retailers to raise wages come at a pivotal time when the plight of hourly workers has made national headlines.

Protests by fast food workers asking for higher pay have increased. Labor-backed groups have taken aim at Wal-Mart, the nation’s largest private employer with 1.3 million workers, to start entry wages at $15 per hour. And President Obama is endorsing a bill in Congress that includes a proposed increase in the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour, while several states are considering raising their minimum wages.

At the same time, there’s much national debate about what is a “living wage,” or enough money for a worker to make in order to make ends meet. Most retail workers already make more than the federal minimum wage but not much more. In fact, more than half of retail workers make $10 or less, according to David Cooper of The Economic Policy Institute.

According to the most recent government data, the average that hourly retail workers in a non-supervisory role earn is $14.65, but that includes people who work at auto dealers and other outlets that pay more than traditional retailers. The average hourly pay is $9.93 for cashiers and low-level retail sales staff, according to Hay Group’s survey of 140 retailers with annual sales of $500 million.

Whatever the major players in the U.S. retail industry decide to do will have a big impact on the job market as a whole. In fact, the industry supports one in every four U.S. jobs, representing about 42 million workers.

Still, the industry has mostly shunned the idea of higher wages. The National Retail Federation, which represents some of the nation’s largest retailers, is fighting President Obama’s proposal, saying the financial burden could force them to raise prices or reduce workforce.

Target Corp. executives weighed in on the issue Wednesday during the company’s earnings conference call, saying that it is always assessing the marketplace to determine competitive wages. But they said the recent announcements from Wal-Mart and others haven’t changed their views on wages. Executives declined to comment on Target’s average hourly wage rate, but they did say all of Target’s workers make more than the federal minimum wage. A Credit Suisse report estimates Target pays $9.06 per hour, based on a sample size of 985 workers.

“Our goal is to make sure we have the very best team in retail,” Target’s CEO Brian Cornell told investors Wednesday. “And we’re going to continue to invest in their development and make sure … we’re very competitive with the wages we provide.”

TJX spokeswoman Doreen Thompson declined to say what its workers currently earn, but a recent Credit Suisse report estimates TJX’s current hourly pay at about $8.24, based on a sampling of 116 workers.

In addition to higher starting wages, TJX, which has 191,000 workers globally that restock shelves, greet customers and ring up purchases, said that in 2016, the company plans to pay all workers who have worked at its stores for more than six months at least $10 per hour.

MONEY Autos

Why Apple Can’t Sell Cars Like iPhones

Apple employees prepare the newly released iPhone 6 for sale
Hannibal Hanschke—Reuters

Apple makes its money selling affordable luxury, but an Apple car would likely be luxury—period.

The Apple car! It’s Cupertino’s latest nonexistent product to drive the tech world into a frenzy. Ever since the Wall Street Journal reported that Apple has “several hundred employees” working on the production of a Tesla competitor (by 2020, no less, according to Bloomberg), pundits have been fighting over the viability of an Apple-branded automobile.

On Monday, Vox’s Matt Yglesias jumped into the fray, taking on what he saw as the prevailing argument against the Apple car: namely, that the car industry is a low margin business, and Apple needs high margins to keep making its usual hefty profits. Here’s Yglesias:

The misperception here is that Apple earns high margins because Apple operates in high margin industries. The truth is precisely the opposite. Apple earns high margins because it is efficient at manufacturing and firmly committed to a business strategy of sacrificing market share to maintain pricing power.

If Apple makes a car, it will be a high margin car because Apple only makes high margin products. If it succeeds it will succeed for the same reason iPhones and iPads and Macs succeed — people like them and are willing to buy them, even though you could get similar specs for less.

That’s sort of true, but it’s not the whole picture. To understand Apple’s business model, we need to take a step back. Apple earns high profits because it goes into high-volume industries dominated by low-margin players who sell relatively affordable products. Apple then makes a premium product, one where you can’t get similar specs for less—there is no other computer or smartphone with the software or build quality of an iPhone 6 or Macbook Air—and prices its offering a few hundred dollars more than the competition. Then it earns billions off this relatively small price increase by selling high quantities of units.

In other words, Apple makes premium versions of things everybody needs at prices most people can still afford. To quote a 2010 review of the iPad, by Daring Fireball’s John Gruber, ” ‘Affordable luxury’ is the sweet spot for mass market success today, and Apple keeps shooting bulls eyes.” A similar strategy for an Apple car then, would be to sell a premium-quality car with higher margins (Apple’s gross margin in 2014 was close to 40%) at a still-affordable price.

The problem for Apple is that it’s a lot easier to increase margins in a low-cost industry than a high-cost one. Even if an iPhone 6 costs 100% more than a cheap LG smartphone, it’s only $200. Same thing with the Macbook Air, which is twice the price of a low-end Windows laptop but still affordable at $1,000.

But trying to get similar margins in the automobile market means a price increase of thousands of dollars, not hundreds. Double the price of a $22,970 Toyota Camry, or ask for even a 50% premium, and you’re in BMW territory. (That company’s cheapest sedan costs $32,000.)

The typical Apple customer has enough disposable income to double their phone budget and buy an iPhone 6. Buy one fewer latte a week, and you’re pretty much there. Asking someone to double their car budget is a very different story. That’s not affordable luxury, that’s luxury—period.

This isn’t to say Apple won’t make an expensive high-margin car, just like BMW. The premium car market isn’t nearly as profitable as the cell phone market, but it’s not nothing. It’s also possible Apple will make a low-margin car while charging a slight premium over the likes of GM and Ford. The entire global automobile market in 2014 was about half the size of the iPhone market alone, meaning such an endeavor would be a lot of work for not much growth, but anything is possible.

But for Apple to do either of these things would be to abandon the affordable luxury strategy that has made it the most valuable company in the world. That’s worth thinking about when considering an Apple car’s chances.

TIME Companies

See How Much More Expensive Disney World Prices Have Gotten

Magic Kingdom Disney Ticket PRice
Handout—Getty Images In this handout photo provided by Disney Parks, The Wanted performs while taping the Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade TV special on Dec. 6, 2013 at the Magic Kingdom park at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

These charts show how ticket prices climbed to over $100—and they're not coming back down

Tickets to Disney’s Magic Kingdom theme park have been bumped up to $105—the first time the price has breached $100.

The increase comes as no surprise, as Florida’s Magic Kingdom, along with every other major theme park, generally raises its admission price each year. “There is strong demand for our attractions and entertainment,” a Disney spokesperson said in a statement. “We continually add new offerings and experiences, and many of our guests select multiday tickets or annual passes, which provide a great value and additional savings.”

Still, there’s no doubting just how expensive Magic Kingdom’s ticket prices have become. When the park opened in 1971, tickets cost only $3.50, or about $20 in 2014 dollars. Ticket prices have more than doubled in the last 13 years alone.

Here’s a look at the steady rise of Magic Kingdom’s ticket prices:

 

Aside from being the world’s most visited theme park, Magic Kingdom is also one of America’s most expensive. Universal Orlando typically follows closely behind Magic Kingdom’s ticket prices, and the two of them soar above prices of more ride-focused theme parks like Six Flags and Cedar Point:

 

TIME Media

Google’s Music Service Just Got Way More Useful

Chris Yerga, engineering director of Goo
AFP—AFP/Getty Images Chris Yerga, engineering director of Google, introduces some features of Google play during Google's annual developer conference, Google I/O, at Moscone Center in San Francisco on June 27, 2012.

Google Play Music users will now be able to store up to 50,000 of their own songs for free

Google is expanding the size of its celestial jukebox.

The company announced Wednesday that users will now be able to store up to 50,000 of their own songs for free using Google Play Music, up from the previous limit of 20,000 songs. The songs, which can be uploaded directly from a user’s iTunes collection or other local music folders, can be played on iOS devices, Android devices and the web.

This service shouldn’t be confused with Google Play Music All Access, Google’s Spotify competitor that lets users stream more than 30 million songs from the cloud for $10 per month. However, the two services can work in tandem, so a user can mix songs from the All Access library with tracks they’ve uploaded directly from their own files.

TIME Companies

Google Is Planning a Massive New Headquarters

Google
Bloomberg—Bloomberg via Getty Images A man walks past a painted Google sign in the reception area of the Google Inc. office in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, July 15, 2014.

But some locals worry that the search giant is taking over their town

Google is planning to unveil plans for a sprawling new headquarters this week, according to The New York Times, but some residents of the company’s hometown of Mountain View, Calif. aren’t happy about it.

The new Googleplex would include “canopylike buildings,” the Times reports, as well as bike and pedestrian paths. However, a new facility to accommodate Google’s ever-growing workforce (nearly 54,000 at the end of 2014) could place even more strain on the overcrowded Mountain View. Traffic gridlock is now common and housing prices have increased thanks to the influx of well-paid tech workers.

Mountain View’s city council appears split on how much leeway to allow Google as it builds out. Some see Google’s expansion as an opportunity to turn Mountain View into a world-class city, while others worry that if more Google residents begin living in Mountain View itself rather than San Francisco, they’ll be able to to create a strong enough voting block to effectively control the local government.

The full proposal for Google’s headquarters is expected to be submited Friday, according to the Times.

TIME Business

These Are the 25 Best Places to Be an Intern in 2015

Based on an analysis by job review site Glassdoor

Glassdoor, a website that allows employees to post anonymous office reviews, has released its 2015 list of the best places to intern in the U.S. Facebook leads the ranking, which is based on the highest-rated reviews of each company. Tech dominates the list more than any other sector, with 12 companies represented.

The round-up is a promotion for the site’s new Glassdoor Students, a job search resource specifically tailored to college students.

GD-Highest-Rated-Companies-for-Internships-2015

 

LIST: 5 of the Best Companies for Working Moms

LIST: Best Places to Live 2014

Read next: The 25 Absolute Best Workplaces in the World

TIME Careers & Workplace

10 Behaviors That Will Hinder Your Success

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Success is not a matter of characters or habits—it's about your behaviors

When you spend decades working with executives and business leaders, you really can’t help but observe what works and doesn’t work over the long haul. One thing I’ve noticed, it’s not intrinsic characteristics or personal habits that determine whether you’re successful or not. It’s your behavior.

What do I mean by “behavior?” How you react under long-term stress. Whether you meet your commitments or not. How you interact with others. Your attitude toward customers. How hard you’re willing to work to do the job right. Whether you’re focused and disciplined or scattered and distracted. That sort of thing.

Now, I admit to having known some pretty dysfunctional founders and CEOs who did well for themselves for a time. But sooner or later, usually when the pressure is on and things aren’t going so well, they exhibit self-destructive behavior that bites them in the behind. Sadly, they often take their businesses down with them.

Related: Want to Be Successful? Quit Being So Positive.

If you want to make it big over the long-term, you might want to take a good, hard look in the mirror and see if any of these career-limiting behaviors describe you.

Naivety. Granted, we all start out sort of wide-eyed and gullible, but the sooner you convert that to savvy and skeptical, the better your chances of coming out on top. The reason is simple: suckers and fools don’t win. Learn to question everything you read and hear and always consider the source.

Panic. High-pressure situations are common in the business world. Things almost never go according to plan and oftentimes they go terribly wrong. It comes with the territory. If you can’t override your adrenaline response and remain calm in a crisis, you’re sort of screwed.

Fanaticism. Passion is a big success driver, but when you cross that line and become over-the-top fanatical, that works against you. I’ve seen it time and again. It leads to a skewed perception of reality, flawed reasoning, and bad decision-making.

Laziness. Those who are driven to achieve great things also know one fundamental truth: It takes hard work over the long haul. That’s why they’re always so focused and disciplined. Most people are slackers. That’s why most people don’t achieve great things. Simple as that.

Quick-fix mentality. Steve Jobs said, “Half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance” and if you’re not passionate about what you do, you won’t stick with it. Too many people want instant gratification these days. That’s not going to cut it.

Related: Considering an Online Business? Read This First.

Acting out. Whatever feelings you have trouble dealing with – jealousy, shame, inferiority, entitlement – transferring them to people you work with and acting out in anger won’t just make you and everyone around you miserable, it’ll kill your career, too.

Selfishness. If you act like the world revolves around you, you’d better have the talent to back it up. Even so, being overly self-centered will diminish your effectiveness. Business isn’t about you; it’s about business. It’s about your customers’ experience with your products. Remember who serves whom in the relationship.

Living in the past or future. Granted, we can learn from the past, but dwelling on it is self-destructive. Likewise, you can plan for and dream about the future, but if your actions aren’t focused on the present, you’ll never achieve your plans or your dreams.

Lighthearted indifference. You hear phrases like “whatever works,” “it’s all good,” and “no worries” a lot lately but you’ll rarely hear them from highly accomplished people. They may be a lot of things but apathetic is not one of them.

Oversensitivity. If you’re so thin-skinned that any criticism makes you crazy and every little thing offends you, you’re going to have a rough go of it in the real business world. There’s a good reason why business leaders usually have a good sense of humor and humility. It’s sort of a requirement. Don’t take yourself so seriously.

One last thing. If any of this offends you enough to want to write an angry flame comment, you’ve got at least two or three issues to work on. Then again, look at the bright side. At least you’re not indifferent.

Related: You Don’t Need a Cause to Do What’s Right

This article originally appeared on Entrepreneur.com.

TIME Careers & Workplace

How Not to Answer ‘Why Are You Interested in This Position?’

businesswoman-job-interview
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Maintain a good balance between talking about yourself and relating to the company

The Muse logo

This post is in partnership with The Muse. The article below was originally published on The Muse.

Hiring managers don’t always say what’s on their minds, and sometimes this results in a less effective interviewing experience for you, the job candidate. But, regardless of how good or bad your interviewer is, you’ll very likely still get this question: “Why are you interested in this position?”

The reason for that is because your answer says a lot about all of the most important things the interviewer will be evaluating: your skills, your cultural fit, and your interest. In other words, this is definitely not a question you want to screw up. Here are four common mistakes and how to avoid them.

1. You Never Talk About the Company

I recently had a conversation with a recruiter, and she shared this great tidbit with me about what she considers to be the kiss of death for interviews. When people answer, “Why are you interested in this position?” with something about being passionate about programming, writing, or some other skill with no mention at all about the actual company, it’s immediately a red flag. Think about it this way: You can bring your skills anywhere. The trick is explaining why you want to use them for this particular company.

2. You Only Say What’s in it for You

This mistake is particularly common because, well, this is what the question is asking for, isn’t it? Maybe this job would give you the chance to learn a lot about marketing, or it’s an opportunity to grow your quantitative analysis skills—that’s great, but it’s not what your interviewer really wants to hear. At the moment, the hiring manager isn’t the most invested in what’s in it for you; he or she wants to know what’s in it for the company. The solution? Align your interests and say something about your enthusiasm for using your skills to contribute to the company’s greater goal.

3. You Bring Up Points That Aren’t Relevant

In the heat of the moment, it can be really tempting to reveal that the office is actually quite close to your daughter’s school or how the company’s flexible hours policy would make it easier to carpool with your roommate, but don’t give in. These are nice perks, but (hopefully) they’re not the only reason why this position is exciting for you. Plus, you’ll be giving up an opportunity to share the more relevant ones.

4. You Answer the Wrong Question

Have you ever gone on a date with someone who wouldn’t stop talking about his or her ex? Well, turns out this happens during job interviews, too. Don’t be that person who can’t shut up about why you need to leave your old job, stat. Even if the reason you’re job searching is directly related to your previous position, focus on the future. Bring up the skills you’ve developed for sure, but no need to dive into the history of how you acquired them.

This seemly innocuous question is a surprisingly tricky one, especially if you try to answer it without first thinking about your audience. Read this to learn more about how to answer this question strategically. Then, get your story straight, and remember who you’re talking to. It’s just one question, but it can completely shape the way an interviewer views your candidacy.

More from The Muse:

TIME Careers & Workplace

8 Guaranteed Ways to Gain a Mentor

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Remember that mentoring relationship is a two-way street

startupcollective

Question: What’s one thing you can do now to encourage older/more experienced entrepreneurs to WANT to mentor you?

Don’t Just Be a Taker

“Find a way to give back to the more experienced entrepreneur. Also, when you ask for 30 minutes, only take 30 minutes. They will appreciate your attention to their time.” — Andrew Howlett, Rain

Remind Them of Themselves

“Every week I receive emails from individuals wanting to have coffee or ask questions. The ones I tend to meet with often remind me of a younger self. Whether they went to my college, hail from my hometown or have the same passions I had in college, I (like most people) gravitate toward like-minded people. Showing an entrepreneur that you have a common thread can go a long way in securing a mentor.” — Kim Kaupe, ZinePak

Add Value to Their Business

“I’ve found it’s easier to start a new relationship by giving rather than taking. Do research on your perspective mentor, and find out what they’re working on. Study their process, and come up with an innovative way to improve it. Then, share your findings with them. This will demonstrate that you are worth their time, and it won’t become just a one-way relationship.” — Anthony Saladino, Kitchen Cabinet Kings

Don’t Come Empty-Handed

“Show that you are capable of executing to some degree on your own, whether that is by gaining some traction, some buzz or just building a great product. The worst is when someone comes to me with nothing and expects me to do too much of the work for them. I only want to surround myself with A-Players, and that goes for mentors and mentees alike.” — Danny Boice, Speek

Find Similarities in Your Situation

“People will want to help you if they understand and trust you and see a little bit of themselves in you. Older, experienced entrepreneurs almost feel a need to reinvest back into the karma that has made them successful. As people grow older and acquire everything they think they need, they figure out that life is about giving. Ask Bill Gates about that one.” — Andy Karuza, SpotSurvey

Be Professional

“No one wants to help someone who isn’t professional. Keep your emails (especially those with requests) brief. I don’t want to see more than a paragraph when you’re asking for information. Respond when my assistant emails you to confirm an appointment. Be prompt and friendly, and it doesn’t hurt to take notes. Afterward, send a thank-you email or, even better, a handwritten note!” — Rakia Reynolds, Skai Blue Media

Give Them a Reason

“As with any investment, older/more experienced entrepreneurs are looking for an opportunity with promise. If you want someone to mentor you, show them why they should, and demonstrate to them that their efforts will not be wasted.” — Fabian Kaempfer, Chocomize

Be Available

“Make yourself available, and be humble and teachable. The men and woman who have gone before us have a wealth of knowledge and experience, so we need to sit at their feet, listen and learn. However, it’s not enough just to listen to them; it’s about acting on the advice. When mentors see their advice impacting your business, it encourages them to keep teaching and the student to keep learning!” — Adam Degraide, Astonish

This article was originally published on StartupCollective.

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