11/30/2012 10:03 PM ET|
Secrets of self-made millionaires
An author who interviewed rich people offers insights on how they made their money and how they think about wealth.
Do you dream of becoming rich but aren't sure how to make your millions -- or better yet, billions? Then who better to ask than the rich themselves about how they made their way to the top.
Steve Siebold did just that. He's spent nearly 30 years interviewing the world's wealthiest people.
Siebold, the author of "How Rich People Think," (find it on Bing) spoke with U.S. News about what the rich have in common, how self-made millionaires attained their wealth and why now is the best time to strike it rich. Excerpts:
Q: What sparked your fascination with the rich?
A: I was a broke college student in 1984, and I wanted to be rich. But I didn't feel like I was getting the information I needed from my college business classes. In a lot of the classes, the business professors seemed to put down the rich, and that didn't make sense to me. So I started looking for outside sources until I found a millionaire to interview.
Q: Was he difficult to find?
A: Yes, because I didn't know any millionaires and I was just a kid. I was probably 19 years old. And I found the rich don't really like to flaunt their wealth. Most of the rich, in my experience, aren't like Donald Trump -- they're the polar opposite. They want to be left alone, because as soon as people know they've got a lot of money, people come after them and the media goes after them. They want to be quiet and unexposed.
The deal they made with me was I wouldn't give their names out unless they gave me permission, and very few of them gave me permission.
Q: Have you found any commonalities among the people you've interviewed?
A: Their personality styles vary: Some are introverts, some are extroverts. But their belief systems around money are the same. That was the one thread that really helped me throughout the process: They all have a really positive relationship with money. They think about money in terms of freedom, as opposed to the negative relationship a lot of people have with money.
Q: The net worth of the richest Americans grew by 13% in the past year to $1.7 trillion. Does that surprise you?
A: No, not at all. If you look at the global equity markets over the last few years, they're up 18%. As where the average Americans have their money wrapped up in their home equity and low-interest vehicles, like 401k's, the rich have their money in the global equity markets. They've got the money to invest, and it's a good place to be right now. They're also in a nice position because they can afford to lose.
Q: Did self-made millionaires simply work harder than the rest of us to get where they are?
A: Most people think the rich got lucky. People think their money wasn't earned by hard work and strategic, calculated thinking, which is not the truth for most people. There are crooks in every income category, but in my experience, there's no more on the rich side than the poor side.
But it's interesting how the self-made rich are a really hated group. They're discriminated against, even in the wealthiest country of the world. I think it's really sad. I think we should celebrate these people. There's a tendency to demonize them, which I think is just crazy.
Q: Is there any way that contempt some people have for the rich can change?
A: I hope so. It's so easy to take a shot at people who are rich. I hope that, over time, we can change our beliefs in this country, because if we don't lead the way in changing people's beliefs about capitalism and wealth, I think we're really in trouble.
Q: Do rich people feel that resentment to the point where they only want to associate with other rich people?
A: Absolutely. I call it "cocooning." But they don't like to talk about money when they get together. They genuinely like to associate with one another. But many people think it's because the rich think they're better than other people, and it's not -- it's because they're discriminated against. I think they just want to be with similar people who won't discriminate against them. They're a minority that people target, which is why they tend to hide out and stick together.
More from U.S. News & World Report:
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
While I agree with the author that we should applaud and not demonize self made millionaires, that should have been only a couple of sentences in the article. The entire article is about the attitude towards rich people. There is not one secret or tidbit of information shared that could help anyone. It's a "shame on us" piece defending why "the rich" don't want to hang out with us regular folks and why we should understand them for it.
However, it's not necessarily the author that's to blame, for all we know the author titled the piece, "Let's not hate the rich", but the idiots at US News decided to deceive us and created a title that has nothing to do with the content.
Whatever the author titled the piece, the owners of this site thought it wise to dupe us.
Also interesting to note the sexism in the piece,
>>>So I started looking for outside sources until I found a millionaire to interview.<<<<
>>>>>Q. Was HE difficult to find?<<<<<
The intent meaning that there are no self made female millionaires, or they're not worthy of interviewing.
What a shame that fearless female entrapreneurs such as the women that created Spanx, Mary Kay, Weight Watchers, Mrs Fields Cookies, The Body Shop are all deemed so unworhty that "Looking for a millionaire to interview" is assumed that it should be a "he".
Well, what can we expect of this aurhor and USNews? They're already shown themselves to be poor journalists.
all I know is I've been out of work 1 year as a hha pca elder care worker and people from other countries took over my line of work I make good money online now to support myself its bad enough groceries are so expensive and fuel oil and gas alone if I didn't have my online business in advertising I'd be living in the streets...
life is a game not a battle !
The writer isnt going to GIVE you the secrets. He wants you to BUY his book to read,
then you will find out his secret was getting rich off of you reading secrets on the rich>> LOL
So I've been "brainwashed" if I believe "the love of money is the root of all evil"? You do know it's the Bible that says this and not just "some people" right? I don't think there's anything wrong with people wishing they had more money. We all want to be able to pay our bills, have some nice things, maybe a nice yearly vacation and then leave something for our kids. The problem, I think, is when a person places more value on "things" than they do on other people and relationships and spends their whole lives chasing after the almight dollar...only to find that, as Don Henley once wrote, "there ain't no hearses with luggage racks". George Carlin also said it right "Trying to find happiness in accumulating things is like trying to satisfy hunger by taping sandwiches to your body." As far as this guy's article, that's four minutes of my life I'll never get back.
The 7 secrets to becoming filthy rich are simple: All you need to learn to do is lie, cheat, steal, manipulate, deceive, backstab and pay a hit man on occasion and sometimes on a more regular basis. It all depends on your GREEDY ambitions in life. Oh and,..... don't forget to throw your moral compass out the window before you begin your journey towards "Greedsville".
There is an old saying..."When the river gets mad, big profits come for fishermen"
Rich people are simply opportunists taking advantage of current circumstances.
The only thing I would really keep an eye on is in the type of passion I grow to becoming wealthy because then I could do wrong things (envy, hate or even kill someone) in order to be another millionaire.
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