A lot of people find Finance either boring or scary. Chances are, you don’t; otherwise, you wouldn’t be following my weekly column. But for sure, you have a dear aunt or friend who’s so bubbly and fun to be with but once you start talking about money, falls asleep; or an admirable professor who’s a great teacher and knows his subject so well and other non related matters, but can’t seem to master the laws of money, scared of taking risks that he just keeps all his hard earned teacher’s salary in good old time deposit whose purchasing power has gone done sharply, and is now faced with a problem as he approaches his retirement.
On the other hand, if you yourself are an FQ-virgin (i.e. first time reader of my articles ;)) and scared or bored with the topic of money, don’t worry. You’re not alone. In fact, you’re probably the norm.
A showbiz story
Unlike Finance, showbiz is fun and you can get everybody’s (well, almost everybody’s) attention when it’s the topic of conversation. A few years ago, a movie producer saw on You Tube the dance number of my sons during my husband’s the 50th birthday. She asked to have a meeting with my sons one Friday night in a restaurant along Katipunan. My sons were hesitant but this stage mother said, “Just meet with her. Do you realize that showbiz aspirants would do anything to have dinner with her?” And so they did. During our conversation, I found out that she studied in the States and practiced being an accountant for quite some time. She shared, “But you know how finance could really be boring.” I’m sure she didn’t know that both Marvin and I were Finance people. Given my personality, I couldn’t help but say something, “Really? Maybe not all fields, and maybe not when it’s the thing that you really like to do. Maybe it wasn’t your calling.”
But she may be right.
Maybe Finance is boring to a lot of people because Finance insiders love talking in their jargon that they intimidate the non-Finance people. It’s either a deliberate action (so they feel elitist), or just a sheer lack of communication skills, or just a mere acceptance of what has been the “tradition,” what it’s supposed to be. You have to look and smell serious so people will trust you with their money. Or you have to make it sound hard to understand so you can justify your fee?
Check it out. When you listen to a talk on Finance and Investing, chances are, you see powepoint presentation slides cramped with data – graph, bullet points and what have you. But when you listen to marketing/advertising presentations, you see photos that talk to you.
A lot of Finance people speak in their monotone serious voices. My son who, together with his team, won the national championship in an investment research challenge, was advised not to be flamboyant, to tone it down because it’s an investment presentation. When he narrated this to me I said to myself, “And we wonder why only less than 1% is investing in the stock market?”
I personally revolt this notion that Finance should be presented in a serious, boring way! How can you get people interested? What we “seriously” need to do is to find a way to make everyone interested in Finance! Not necessarily as a profession, but at least understand how money works, because everyone has to know how to deal with money. No one can escape from this reality. Our family’s mantra is Investing is for everyone! It’s everyone’s business to know how money works. (To those who haven’t, please check out The Retelling of The Richest Man in Babylon to learn the three basic laws of money in simple terms.)
I try to discuss this “serious and boring” subject in a light and easy to understand way. I don’t want to see noses bleeding while I give a talk. :D I add a bit of fun to it because the only way one can sustain something is to have fun while doing it. I encourage all parents to learn it and teach it to their children. FQ or money matters should be a family affair!
How can you help?
I have a request to make. We’re holding a major event to encourage families to talk about money at home with a fun workshop for the whole family on May 9, 2015, 1-5pm at the SMX Aura. May I request you to drop in your suggestions on how to make this fun and effective for the participants? You would be helping us dispel that Finance is boring and scary.
For the meantime, I leave you with a short video – an excerpt from the Christmas episode of ANC On The Money where we discuss making money conversations a family affair. In the excerpt, Salve Duplito recommends bringing your loved ones to events where they can learn about money. Then it ends with an analogy between finance and dancing. Enjoy the video!
Please click this link: Money Dance Lessons from the Fausto Brothers or the video thumbnail above.
(Rose Fres Fausto is the author of bestselling books Raising Pinoy Boys (download free book sample) and The Retelling of The Richest Man in Babylon (a story and activity book for kids from 1 to 92). Click this link to watch the Book Trailer.
To read her other articles go to Author Archive of PhilStar.com, FQMom.com and RaisingPinoyBoys.com. Send your questions and comments via email to FQMomm@gmail.com. To watch her interviews and other videos, go to FQ Mom you tube channel.)
Attribution: Images from tech-tv.co.uk and cspdsmc.files.wordpress.com put together by the author to help deliver the message of the article.
This article is also published in PhilStar.com and RaisingPinoyBoys.com.