Monday, February 2, 2015

The Best Advice I Got In College


Was from Mr. Carl.

He drove a Japanese car. A luxury model, nonetheless. He had slicked back hair like an investment banker and was indeed in the banking industry. Tailored shirts and Longines watches were not foreign to him, too.

Mr. Carl was at most 40 years old, having retired in his early 30s and later became a remisier. Soon after the Asian Financial Crisis, he became a lecturer and taught us Strategic Management in college.

When we had lunch together after class, he told me his story and it was the most interesting one I've ever heard.

You see, after he graduated, he started working for a large British bank. While he excelled in the corporate rat cage, nasty bosses were not rare in his path. He even had a division head who would bring his mistress into the office, chase her around the desk...and let's just say 'shagging' did occur, every Friday.

True story. I'm not making this up.

One day, in the board meeting, his incompetent boss was accusing him for something that he was clearly not responsible for. It was at that very moment where he stood up and yelled at his boss, "You bastard!" in front of everyone, including the chairman of the bank.

Guess what happened?

His boss got fired instead.

Soon after, he realised that the corporate rat cage is not for him. He left the bank and became a remisier, made boat loads of money, bought a Porsche (and later discovered that the maintenance of the car was just ridiculous) and lived the high life.

The reason why he was able to pull that stunt off was because he started saving and investing since he first started working. He invested in stocks and bought real estate, flipping them over and over, many times.

When he called his boss a 'bastard', he knew at that point that he was already financially independent. No longer did he need to put up with the corporate conundrum. Now he leads a more mellow life but is still very much financially free.

He ended his story by giving me a piece of advice:

"You MUST start saving & investing young, so that nobody can hold you by the scruff of your neck."

4 years later, his advice is still not forgotten.

I'm working on it.






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