Sunday, January 24, 2010

Rich Dad Poor Dad

Despite DINK and enough investment schemes and instruments around, there still doesn’t seem to be any guarantee for the future. “Investment” is a fashionable word and you belong to a different planet if you don’t know “portfolio of assets”. Despite all this most of us are at sea when it comes to ensuring financial independence in our retirement years.

Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki and Sharon Lechter is a path-breaking series that made a huge difference to the way i looked at the whole ‘handling our finances’ issue. Apart from being an absolutely jargon free, it makes an interesting and informative read. It’s not a step-by-step guide to becoming rich but involves a lot of mental conditioning and motivation to achieve financial freedom.

Though i was initially sceptical about the whole idea of becoming rich through investments, i realised it makes a lot of sense to at least be able to manage finances sensibly. If you go on to become rich, that can be a bonus. Seems like a good angle to begin with.

The main premise of the books is to achieve financial freedom by making sensible investments that go on to become passive income generating assets with minimal effort.

The series aims at financial literacy of the common man. Rich Dad Poor Dad begins with how inadequate formal education is in helping people manage their finances for the rest of their lives. Our education mainly qualifies us for a job that might pay us well. And most people have no idea what to go about managing the money they earn. Traditional schooling doesn’t equip us to handle the pressure that the information age puts on us. Gone are the days when people had 9-5 jobs and could rely on their pension plans. New age requires us to change the way we handle our money to make up for the absence of retirement benefits in jobs today. Though it mostly refers to the American context, it pretty much applies to all of us since all of us need money to survive.

The second book in the series - Cashflow Quadrant deals at length with the basics of understanding your cash flow and managing the right kind of balance. The third book is Guide to Investing which I am yet to read and have skipped to a later book Retire Young Retire Rich. The fact that the author draws on his own trajectory from being broke to being financially independent in nine years makes it a lot more credible. The series is well-connected and refers back and forth for the benefit of people who might not have read the previous books.

Looking forward to reading all the books in the series. I’d recommend this to everyone who wants to or even doesn’t want to become rich. It sure gives you a lot financial education. Take a peek...

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