BloggerViews: Interview with Mehrab Irani – Author of a Best Selling Finance Thriller Book
Today, I am not featuring a blogger or a freelancer in this post of the “BloggerViews” series but an author. Yes, that’s right. This would be the 1st interview of an author in the “BloggerViews” series with many others to follow soon. So, let me introduce Mr. Mehrab Irani who is the author of a Finance Thriller book, “Mad Money Journey” which instantly became a best seller.
New Genre Finance Fiction Thriller with a NGO Mission
Author Mehrab Irani has delved into a new genre of finance fiction with his new thriller book “Mad Money Journey”. Acclaimed by corporate luminary Ratan Tata himself, the book was launched amidst much fanfare in the presence of veterans Rakesh Jhunjhunwala and funny man Cyrus Broacha.
Mehrab Irani is the General Manager of Tata Investment Corporation and has a large amount of experience in both equity and fixed income markets. He is a regular figure on channels like NDTV, CNBC, ET Now, Bloomberg, Radio Stations etc besides writing columns for many business publications in his 15 year long, prosperous career.
Mad Money Journey is a book that deals with the financial emancipation of an average Joe. It is a story filled with adventure, thrill, suspense and mystery that delves into the very soul of the relationship between man and money.
In today’s day and age, managing money and finances is a thought that scares people from every walk of life from a college student to a working professional, male or female, educated or uneducated, old or young, author Mehrab Irani presents finance in an entertaining way to his readers in his book ‘Mad Money Journey’. He is also aiming at converting it into a movie. It’s simply like a NGO effort from his side.
Without any further do, let’s start the interview.
Me: Hello Mr. Irani, Welcome on board to be a part of our BloggerViews series.
Mr. Irani: Thanks for inviting me and giving me a chance to put down my views for your readers in the BloggerViews series. I am very happy to note the great work which you’ll are so silently doing.
Me: My readers who are mostly professional bloggers, freelance writers and social media fanatics would love to know about Mehrab Irani as a person. So let’s start with your introduction.
Q1. Being a highly recognized name in the finance industry and now a well-known author of a bestseller novel, you don’t need much introduction. Still many of our readers would like to know about you in person.
A – I work as General Manager, Investments, with Tata Investment Corporation, Mumbai. I have had diverse experience in both equity and fixed income markets, including research, dealing and portfolio management. I am fired by an almost missionary zeal for spreading financial knowledge among investors. My strength is my ability to connect abstract concepts to real life situations using my powerful imagination and plethora of skills which reverberates through all his work. I am a prolific writer for newspapers, websites and my blog: www.intelligentmoney.blogspot.com. I also appear regularly on CNBC, ET Now, NDTV Profit, and Bloomberg as well as on radio. Readers can follow me on twitter and my handle is @RealMehrabIrani or like my book on Facebook at www.facebook.com/madmoneyjourney.
You can grab his books from the links below:
I learn about money, finance and investments from my job. Writing is my hobby. Having knowledge and not sharing with others is selfishness. Whatever I have learned over the past so many years, I think I should share with others. The biggest impediment between man and his dreams is money; financial slaves cannot fulfill their mission on earth. So, I write to help others achieve financial freedom, give them the courage to live their dreams, achieve their higher self and answer the calling of their souls. This is my humble attempt; I hope I am doing justice to it.
Q2. In one of your previous interviews, you describe investment being a boring exercise. In my opinion, I never felt that kick to enroll into finance either. So what was the motivation or inspiration behind joining the finance industry?
A – Yes certainly. Investment is a mechanical boring exercise. And it always has to be that way. If we try to make investments very interesting or exciting then it might turn out to be dangerous for our financial health. Investments are for long term wealth creation and not to give the person with a kick. If a person desires a kick then I would advise them to go to a casino or for horse rating and not to the stock markets. Investment has to be a simple tested boring mechanical process the litmus test being that if your driver or servant is not able to understand it than there is some problem with it. Kindly note that each and everybody in this world has the right to be financially free and if the poorest of the person are not able to appreciate it than there is nothing wrong with them but most probably there might be some flaw with the investment process. You might need to have a relook at it.
The motivation and inspiration behind joining the finance industry was to myself learn and get acquainted to the principles of money, finance and investments. And once I learn it then to connect with the universe and people at large so as to show them what small life they are leading due to money slavery, to help them remember their forgotten dreams, to make them connect with their own higher self, to encourage them to achieve their self actualization goals and to make them answer the calling of their souls.
Q3. Your academic background says it all about your expertise in the industry. You are a qualified Chartered Accountant, Company Secretary and CFA (Level 1). Did you always had any set goal in your mind from the start about these goals you wished to achieve?
A – I had always set goal that I will make some difference to the world before I depart from here. I was invariably inclined towards more creative fields like writing. However, rather than just writing anything without creating value did not appeal to me. Therefore, I thought of using my knowledge about money, finance and investments on one side and of life and its wisdom on the other side in an inspirational, motivational and intuitive manner bringing out the relationship between man and money, entertaining in a thrilling suspenseful manner, helping and guiding my readers on a new path towards self-discovery, a financially free life wherein everybody, rather than being slave to money is actually able to live a happy successful life achieving their highest self and fulfilling their very mission on coming to this planet. I thought of combining the two most powerful things on this planet – entertainment and money. I dream of taking the readers of “Mad Money Journey” on a plateau which will permanently change their journey by putting themselves in the right path wherein they will be introduced to their own inner self and true path. Hence, my goal is to take everybody on a life changing soul searching journey making them realize how financial slavery is preventing them for achieving their higher true self, how to move from financial slavery to financial emancipation, reintroduce them to their dreams, give them the courage to live their dreams, achieve self-actualization goals and answer the calling of their soul.
A – To have knowledge and not share with others is selfish. I did not want to be selfish. I wanted to share whatever I learned over my past so many years of experience in the investment world with everybody. As the proverb goes, ‘give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach him to fish, and feed him for a lifetime’.
To this effect, I wrote my first book called “10 Commandments for Financial Freedom” last year in 2013. It is a simple straight forward book wherein I have brought out 10 principles like earning, protecting, budgeting, saving, spending, investing, leveraging, insuring, common financial mistakes and rules of money which I believe if anybody follows will lead him / her on the path towards financial freedom. It’s a very simple book and I believe anybody reading it will be able to understand it. However, still it is a non-fiction book and people have to actually sit and do the hard work of reading it. After this book, when I used to meet lot of people in seminars, conferences and used to talk with them, I realized that there is lot of apathy towards financial thinking. When we ask a housewife that what are you doing with your money the typical answer is that, “I don’t know my husband or father is looking at it”; when we ask a young educated professional who has just started working that what are you doing regarding your future marriage, children the general answer is that, “I don’t know just now I am busy concentrating in my career”, when we ask a middle aged experienced professional in a senior position earning very good income that what are you doing about your retirement, children marriage then the normal answer is that, “I don’t know I have invested in that mutual fund or given my money to such a fund manager”. I am not stating that we should not go to professional fund managers, if we don’t know how to invest in specific stocks we should surely take the help of professionals but what I am trying to stress over here is that we should at least be aware what is happening with our money. But there is total ignorance about it. And people are generally afraid about the word “money”. And it is not their fault – during school or college we have been taught everything like math, science, history, geography, engineering, medical, law etc but nobody teaches us about the most important thing with which everyone in this physical world has to deal i.e. money. Yes, whether it is a King or a beggar, a CEO or a peon, a Minister or a normal party worker, a man or a woman, educated or uneducated – everybody in this world has to deal with money. Journey in this physical world is incomplete without money. And if we don’t know how to deal with money – many times our this journey becomes like mad. So, the idea of “Mad Money Journey” came up.
You can grab his books from the links below:
Me: I think my readers have learned a lot about yourself. Let’s discuss about your books now.
Q5. Your 1st book titled “10 Commandments of Financial Freedom” was a guide for any individual to attain financial freedom. Tell us how the topic came into your mind.
A – The world is moving forward technologically but we humans are moving backwards financially. We may have all modern facilities like online banking and investing, credit and debit cards, access to financial information, easy loan facilities but our financial knowledge is diminishing. Today, we see young educated people earning very good income but then not able to protect their money from financial predators, they pay everybody like the government, banks, electricity bills, telephone bills, children school fees etc but forget to pay themselves via surplus budget, don’t know when to cut spending and when to spend to get rich, have no protection in the form of financial insurance, are not aware of the difference between saving and investing, buy liabilities mistaking it to be assets with negative leverage which puts them in the web of unnecessary avoidable recurring expenses which then sadly makes them “slaves of money” for life – wage slave of the employer, tax slave of the government and loan slave of the bank.
The only thing certain about money is that it is uncertain. There is a need to unravel the mysterious behavior of money and reveal its deepest secret rules. The poor work for a living, the middle class get into debt and keep working for money while the rich make their and other people’s money work for themselves. We need to learn to make our as well as other people’s money work for us. When you achieve financial independence, you can live a personal debt-free life, enjoy your retirement, spend without feeling guilty and leave your legacy. Someone needs to make you retire from your work as your money will start working for you. Hence, I wrote my first book “10 Commandments for Financial Freedom” to free humanity from financial slavery by helping everyone move from financial slavery to financial emancipation.
Q6. Personal Finance and Investment are always quite confusing for most of the Indians. Also most of us often look for safe investment options. What’s your view on that and what advice would you like to give everyone regarding Investment?
A – As mentioned earlier, investment is a boring mechanical process. Make a simple time tested plan and keep following that plan. Don’t test it on a day-to-day basis but periodically review it for incorporating any necessary change or improvement based on your personal experience, conditions, temperament and positioning.
Before you start on the incredible journey from being a prisoner of money to the attainment of financial freedom, I want to clear one misconception which has taken root deep inside most people — that money can solve all our problems. I regret to say that money cannot and will never be able to solve your problems. It is not a lack of money which is the problem — it is the lack of knowledge about money and how it works which is the real problem. If you are poor and believe that sudden riches, say lottery winning, will solve your problem — then you are grossly mistaken. In fact, that will put you into deeper problems if you don’t have the right knowledge about money. You will be hounded by all kinds of legal and other financial predators and it is very likely that not only may you lose all the wealth but even end up in debt — broken mentally, financially and emotionally. Therefore, both lack of and too much money can be a problem if not backed by right knowledge.
My books will be a guide to solving the problem of lack of knowledge about money and the unbelievable journey towards financial freedom. If my books serve this purpose, my mission of writing them will be complete.
The interview with Mr. Mehrab Irani continues here…
Image courtesy: pocketnewsalert.blogspot.in