Dennis Ng (and Grace, with Dennis’ 2 books; both bestsellers)
1) What are the biggest mistakes people make with their money?
People often mistake income as what they earn. What you really earn is your savings – the net “profit”. Pay Yourself First!
They save insufficient amounts of money. I recommend at least 10% or a minimum of $300 per month.
They play safe with their savings too as they are scared of losing. You know how the Law Of Attraction works – the Universe hears “lose lose lose”, and they are scared of losing hence they lose. For the investor, losing is part of the equation; it is already expected. While others put money in a safe place which cannot beat inflation, the rich borrow money from the bank.
Some treat Life Insurance as savings. Returns 3%, again less than inflation, which means they are getting poorer.
Investing without adequate knowledge, which is actually gambling.
Blindly listening to others, even so-called experts, without doing their own thinking.
Have the Something for Nothing mentality.
Some are blinded by greed and fall for scams.
Aim to be debt-free as soon as possible. I’m a multi-millionaire and I owe the bank money. Just don’t over-borrow.
I see my income as a function of the value I provide to society. If what you do is the reward itself, then you will enjoy happiness and fulfillment.
2) What habits do you believe have the most effect on wealth accumulation & management?
Pay Yourself First.
Invest in acquiring investment knowledge. Have knowledge before investing.
Make money work for you; returns must be higher than the inflation rate. It is possible to get 15% or more average annual returns per year. Leverage on the Power of Compounding.
Understanding Financial Planning is like Soccer; it requires Good Defence & Offence.
We are just here to perform a specific purpose. People mistake money with wealth. Income is a function of the value you deliver and number of people you serve.
I don’t need to chase after money. Just ask “How can I serve more people, how can I increase my value-add?” Find the answer and your income automatically increases. My income is my scoreboard. To earn a million dollars, I probably have to deliver 5 million in value. The value I deliver to society is what motivates me. My income will be a fraction of that.
3) Which are the core lessons you would like people to learn?
First, want to become rich. Most people WISH to be rich. They don’t want to become rich, e.g. they don’t want to look at financial statements.
Secondly, BELIEVE you can become rich. Stop waiting to win at the Big Sweep. Hope is not a strategy. It is undependable.
Thirdly, start taking action. What do I need to know? What are the rich people in the world investing in?
Learn how to invest like the rich, instead of living like the rich. I made that mistake. I went to learn to play golf and found out I had no aptitude for it. Golf requires time for practice. Haven’t played badminton in 10 years? You’ll still be able to now. But you need to go to the driving range at least once a week. I think golf is for people with too much money and too much time.
Also, it’s NOT the wealth that you will acquire that is the most valuable thing. The most valuable thing is the person that you will become in this journey and process.
4) How can we get started on the path to becoming a millionaire?
Learn to reach financial freedom. Learn how to plan your finances.
The smart investor looks for high returns and low risks. A simple rule is this: the upside must be double the downside. Demand that risk must be low!
Learn. Unlearn. Learn.
5) What is your opinion on “Money” and “Happiness”? Does having lots of money bring Happiness?
No! I have worked for 7 years in a bank and 8 years as a financial planner. I have met rich people who are not happy, rich people who are very happy, poor people who are happy or unhappy.
Of course, a comfortable existence is difficult without money. Happiness is a feeling, a state. Happiness is a decision. If you wake up in the morning and you slip and fall, you can curse, and think it is a bad omen and that everything else is going to fail. OR, you can pick yourself up and laugh about how it’s so funny like you’re watching a comedy. It is all a personal choice.
I asked myself what I really want. Some things I do are not fun but are necessary. Everyone is looking for happiness and fulfillment. We don’t want temporary fun.
Material things cannot give us what we really need. After 3 days, the excitement is gone.
Grace says: I have to admit I usually get rather nervous meeting these multi-millionaires, celebrities and successful entrepreneurs. But I’ve found that most of them are really nice folks. Hard to believe, but true!
Dennis is one of them. Our 1-hour interview stretched to 2 hours, and he gave me a copy of each of his 2 bestselling books (imagine that!). I had already bought Dennis’ first book and he autographed all 3. XD
That’s not all.
After our interview, I went to another location to interview another entrepreneur and while waiting for the latter, I realised that Dennis had sent me an email after he left, with his detailed answers to my interview questions (I had sent them to him before we met up). It was totally unexpected because I was taking notes with my ipad during our interview. It was one of my rare almost-fell-off-the-chair moments.
He’s such a generous soul that I have no qualms about recommending his books or his training programmes. I’m sure you’ll get at least 5 (if not 10) times more value than what you pay.
I highly recommend you get a copy of at least his first book here
Here’s what Lorna Tan, former editor of the “Invest” section in The Sunday Times said about the book:
“In this book, Dennis has shared many useful tips and practical strategies on managing and growing wealth. I’m sure you will gain valuable insights from it.”
Join me on the path to becoming a millionaire!