When we read an annual report of the company the CEO who is a victim of this bias described success due to his skills, better decisions, etc. When things go wrong then he blames the economic slowdown, corona, government policy, weather problems, etc.
We attribute success to ourselves and failures to external factors. This is the self-serving bias.
Similar to fund managers, I have met a few so-called fund managers in the early days of my career who have given entire credit of good return to their skills during the bull phase of the market and when the market started falling then they started blaming the market for the poor return. They keep on changing their benchmark as per their performance so that they can easily blame the market.
Try to know your strength, weaknesses and start to work on them rather than give credit to own or blame others. This will help us to improve ourselves more effectively. When we come out from the blame game and start working on ourselves then only, we can develop ourselves otherwise our life will remain miserable. We should have a record of each decision so that we can timely analyze it and learn from our own mistakes. We cannot say a ship captain is good while he can help ship to drive safely in good weather but a good captain will be one who can help ship to drive safely in the worst weather conditions. So always work on developing your knowledge, process.
Being Financially uneducated is riskier rather invest.
Learning investment is more essential than any other profession. Because other professions teach us to work for money and investment teaches us how money works for us.
We have to learn financial knowledge by ourselves because if you go for the insurance salesman and ask that insurance is essential or not then he sells you his product. If we want to learn about investment then go with the advisor who is investing their fund, not to them who just sell advice. Also, we need to keep in mind that there is not a single assets class that is responsible to create wealth.
Success or failure, wealth or poverty, depends solely on how smart the investor is. A smart investor will make millions in the stock market. An amateur will lose millions.
Different levels of investors
The Zero-Financial-Intelligence Level
These are people who do not have any financial intelligence, they spend more than they earn. They believe in looks like rich rather be rich. Though they are earning well, they will reach zero due to their zero financial intelligence. If we do not have any savings, have liabilities, no income generation from the assets column then we need to first focus on repayment of liabilities. These will help us to come out from these levels.
The Savers-Are-Losers Level
These people know that savings are essential for future unforeseen events. But they keep saving money either into a saving account or into the government bond / FD. These all instruments are considered safer but when we compared them with inflation, these instruments do not provide us with protection against inflation. Due to its nature of not protecting against inflation, it even becomes riskier. In general, savers are losers.
The I’m-Too-Busy Level
These people are busy with their careers, family, other interests, and vacation. And due to such a busy schedule, they do not have time to become financially intelligent. So that they deliver their money to the expert to manage on behalf of them. They consider experts have expertise. When the market is into the bull phase, everyone is an expert but we can come to know about the real expert during the bear phase of the market. They invest in many of the avenues but if the market phase changes to the bear then they will also lose everything.
The I’m-a-Professional Level
This is the do-it-yourself investor. This investor may buy and sell a few stocks, often from a discount broker. They think that why should pay a broker when they can do investment by themselves. These people spend their lives in a small area of assets class but we have to understand that investment is a huge subject and we should keep learning about the wider area of it. Those who understand this concept and invest time in learning about investment can able to move to level five. Level-4 investors take control of their lives, knowing that their mistakes are their opportunities to learn and to grow. The fear of investing does not frighten them. It challenges them.
The Capitalist Level
These can be rich people, businessmen, or moves from level 4 to level 5.
These people know that they have to give more to receive more. They focus on raising more money which requires them to focus on their skills, business systems, and people.
We have seen in the first article of the series that the author did not have money and from zero, he has created wealth. So we also can create wealth from zero. Thus, we stop giving the excuse of not having money.
We have to perform a self-analysis about where we stand today? What is our level?
The “I” quadrant is the most important quadrant for our future. If we do not focus on it then we cannot have a good financial future.
When we have to choose the B quadrant then we have to create a system and people will work for that system.
In the B quadrant, we need to know both system and people. It can be possible that our initial business might not work but we just have to focus on improving ourselves, our knowledge of the system, and people. Improvement in our knowledge only brings success in front of us. And it’s essential to get failure in initial business because if not then we will end up with big blunders later on. So, success is a poor teacher and failure teaches us a good lesson. Welcome failure, not run away from it. Learn from it and grow well.
If both the people and the system are leaky, the chances of failure are great. Sometimes it’s hard to know whether the problem is the person or the system that is failing.
There are few ways by which we can get support for starting a business
Find a mentor
A mentor who has operated his own business, not an advisor who has not operated any business. We need to learn from a mentor. Mr Sanjeev Bhikhchandani (Founder of Naukri) has supported Zomato.
We have to become a leader, not a manager. A manager sees subordinates as inferior but the leader appreciates smarts and brings them with him.
Buy a franchise
Franchises are a proven system. So here we are directly buying a system, not building our own. Now, we have to work as an E and follow what they told us to do. Because they have done it rightly, we should follow it right to get succeed. Investors or bank would lend money to a system rather than to a product.
Get involved in network marketing
Here also buy the existing system at a reasonable value and build own business. We get infrastructural benefits from a network marketing company. It’s a kind of buying a personal franchise.
For becoming a successful B, we require to have a few things to keep in mind
Don’t be fearful
People feel fear of what others say to them. Feel fear of getting a rejection.
Have to work with different kinds of people. For becoming successful, we need to learn to work with different kinds of people, lead them.
The system is only going to help us to drive successfully towards the B quadrant from the E or S quadrant. Building a system and working with people is lifelong learning for becoming successful in the B quadrant.
Why we seek job security over freedom? Because we taught in such a way at school as well as at home. Our mindset has to get developed in a similar way where we seek security first. So, E & S quadrant people are motivated by security whereas B & I quadrant people are motivated by freedom.
Similar to the debt trap, there is a very interesting success trap. When B quadrant person gets success, they expand their system, then hire new talent, they work hard. B quadrant person also invests and when it meets succeed, they reinvest it. So that as time passes, they attract more success and which results in the freedom of time. They have time for family, for their hobby, etc.
Financial intelligence does not mean by how much money we make but it’s how much money we keep and that work for us. Also, money keeps working for how many of our generations.
Rather than this, what middle-class people do it. They work hard for a paycheck then they make a plan to save tax, take a home loan to write off interest to save tax. So, they again work hard to pay bills. When people get a job with a high paycheck and benefits, they work hard more to pay bills and increase more liabilities which increases more bills. They jump from one job to other to get a higher amount of paycheck with job security.
S quadrant is the riskiest and needed huge efforts. As they have to do it by themselves so for achieving success and keeping it, they have to work harder.
Many of the E quadrant people start a business by deploying their lifelong savings, borrowing from friend’s family to start a business. And after 2-3 years when the business starts generating cash flow then they have to pay debt first. ~99% of the business getting disappeared in the first 10 years of establishment.
B and I quadrant person also legally take tax advantages compared to the E and S quadrant person. Most people do not focus on the asset column to generate more income but they focus on income and increase in liabilities. Knowledge is a power which used by B and I quadrant people to grab opportunities when it arises. This also gives them confidence. So, if we are into an E quadrant and simultaneously learn about the I quadrant then it will help us to get financially free, also make us confident. Few people are good with both the side of a quadrant, they get a good paycheck, security as an employee and also invest to create more wealth. People those do not have investment knowledge, then they tend to park money in FD or other deposit which is good compare to people who do not save or invest. But this investment does not help us to fight against inflation. If we rely on our employers that they will make us rich then it’s not to be their responsibility. Their responsibility is to provide a steady paycheck to us. It’s our responsibility to create investment to become rich. When we have an abundance of money and time then we directly jump to the I quadrant. But if we do not have time and money then we have to follow the safer path.
Investing is also an investment into the business so it’s advisable to understand businesses. Investing is capital and knowledge-intensive so we have to ready with both for being successful in it.