with Raziah Ahmed
business planning, corporations develop mission statements
and core value statements that signal to all and sundry what
focus they will pursue, and what guidance principles will
be followed. They then develop policy statements and strategic
It is the same thing we need to do at a personal level, if
our vision is personal financial independence. The major rationale
for strategic planning is to take the best advantage of ones
strengths, avoid ones weakness, neutralise threats as far
as possible, and most importantly: convince everyone else
that you will achieve your goal.
But the starting point is always an intention. An intention
is a statement of a plan. And having created the floor plan,
how can you do the same thing better, cheaper, faster. Smart
thought translates into efficient work; try never to have
to do it all over.
However, when you fall (and it is inevitable that we will
fall, being human and gullible and all), get up as fast as
you can. When you smile the whole world smiles with you, but
when you cry, they all think: you are losing it!
Financial independence is not about getting filthy rich, but
its about having enough to give away to others with
a free conscience.
So put down on paper your priorities for financial independence,
and do a two to three per cent add on to give away to the
needy or less fortunate.
This is actually an esoteric but fundamental principle of
wealth creation. It is like a universal law, steeped in the
abundance principle: there is enough for everybody, and the
more you give to others the more you get in return. BUT, you
need an intention to start with.
The reason that most people never have enough money is because
most people do not have a vision and a mission and a core
value system, all aligned with the principles of abundance
If you live your life thinking someone has stolen your birthright,
and that inhibits your growth and prosperity, think again!
No one is responsible for your lack of planning but yourself.
So lets go, for example: Tertiary education for two
children = 300,000; 50 per cent due in eight years, 50 per
cent due in 12 years. What is the present value of 150,000
at six per cent return per annum, for eight years, with an
inflation rate of three per cent? Your financial planner can
assist you with these calculations, and can structure a plan
to achieve your target savings for eight years, and then for
12 years into the future.
How will your assets be valued 12 years into the future? How
much will you need to spend each year to maintain the quality
or value of your assets?
Remember when we spoke about creating a master list of your
assets, and the relevant ownership titles. This will be a
real time saver when you sit with your planner.
But you cannot sit with a planner or financial consultant
unless and until you know what you want to achieve. If you
leave that aspect of your personal business to the consultant,
you will end up with the consultants plan, which very
often, is not what you wanted in the first place.
A good financial planner or consultant will work with you
to achieve your goals and will not impose a plan upon you,
but it will save time if you organise your records, lists,
documents, desires and dreams into written records and objectives.
To illustrate the magnitude of strategic planning: did you
know that McDonalds Corporation has created a situation
where the average Japanese believes that McDonalds is
a Japanese Company? McDonalds now prides itself in being
n Raziah Ahmed is a registered financial consultant.