There are millions of money related books, blogs, and TV shows out there, and there is no way I have seen and read them all. But I thought I’d save everyone some time and recap some of the one’s I have read. Today: Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki.
The book is about Kiyosaki’s youth spent in Hawaii and the tough money lessons he was taught by his “Rich Dad”. He has a friend named Mike with a dad who owns a mini-empire of businesses such as super markets and restaurants. This is opposed to Kiyosaki’s own father who is an academic. Kiyosaki refers to his own father as the “poor dad” and Mike’s Father as “rich dad”.
So what is the difference between them? Essentially:
- Rich people use their money to make more money
- Rich people only spend money on expensive things after they’ve earned it (not on credit)
- The Rich are ballsy
- The Rich don’t blame others for their problems, the turn their problems into wealth
The first few chapters of the book are Kiyosaki recounting small lessons from his Rich Dad and his Poor Dad’s reaction of them. For example the Rich Dad believes that taxes are essentially evil and uses a few tricks to minimize how he pays them. His Poor Dad believes that the rich owe more money than the poor and should pay more.
It is never mentioned outright in the book, but there is definitely a liberal vs. conservative vibe to the book with the Rich Dad being the conservative.
As the book goes on, Kiyosaki details examples from his adult life. For instance he buys a property and flips it nearly immediately for a tidy profit. He says that this shows how with only a few hours worth of work he made more than most people make in a year. He believes this is because he was willing to take risks and had ample connections.
Kiyosaki also believes that to be an employee of someone else is worthless. He believes that you will forever be at mercy of somebody else unless you own what makes you money. Your paycheck should never be your only source of income.
In a nut shell
This book has generated its fair share of controversy. Some doubt whether the Rich Dad was even a real person, while other says that Kiyosaki is simply someone who lucked out of a boom market. I don’t think the critics see what the book is trying to say. When you strip away all of the anecdotes, you essentially have mindsets that Kiyosaki believes the Rich has. These mind sets can be a shock to people who have never really hung around anyone rich (including myself).
Rich Dad is more about the entrepreneurial spirit, that money is only a scorecard of your independence from “The rat race”, and that you don’t need to necessarily make a ton of money but only manage it correctly.
I was initially turned off by some of the arrogance of the book, and how Kiyosaki likes to promote the fact that he gives speeches and has his own board game. At times the book feels more like an infomercial. But look beyond the negative and look at its heart. Rich Dad, Poor Dad is a whole other way about looking at your future.
After all, aren’t we in college to be exposed to different views and opinions?