My Notes on The Business of 21st Century

I recently got a chance to read a book by Robert T. Kiyosaki, an American businessman and author. I thought this knowledge was worth sharing so I am publishing my notes and a brief review on this book. This book talks primarily about how you can start towards attaining financial freedom and champions network marketing to be an excellent starting point due to its flexibility and lack of dependency on capital. I hope this knowledge proves useful to you at some point of your life.

The author Robert T. Kiyosaki, starts with few excerpts of his early life wherein he talks about his rich dad (his friend’s dad), poor dad (his own dad) and their teachings and impact on his life. He lets us understand the life he has led so far, and how, his adamant take on changing his life made him who he is today, and why we as readers should read this book “The Business of 21st Century”.

Part 1

The first part of the book “Take control of your life” talks about how the present economic situation of the world is creating a perfect “Opportunity” for people to start a business and earn their financial freedom. In doing so, he explains how 20th century Industrial Age has given way to new 21st Century Information Age, and how the stale concepts of job security, pensions, social security are just not valid for this age. Citing examples of Microsoft and Disney, he talks about how in all these economic downtimes, there is a silver lining; a heap of opportunities waiting to be explored. Another takeaway is author’s delineation of four cashflow quadrants. He tries to model the behavior of people in these quadrants and in doing so explains why people are reluctant to change from E/S to B/I. Finally, he talks about the entrepreneurial mindset and how it can help you achieve financial freedom and the key lies in harnessing passive income.
cashflow quadrant

E = Employee
S = Self-employed or Small-business owner
B = Business owner
I = Investor

Part 2

The second part “One Business—Eight Wealth-Building Assets” is basically what this book is all about because it is one thing to talk about concepts and theories and another to talk about a practical approach or a solution to financial freedom. Here we are introduced with network marketing as a way to start. John Fleming, a friend and a person with 45 years of experience in network marketing helps us visualize the benefits of network marketing or multilevel direct sales. He explains, how the requirement of capital, makes the transition to B/I quadrant challenging and how network marketing leverages your time and not money instead. He also differentiates it from sales, as this is based on duplication rather than excellence or distinction. He talks about assets that generate income as opposed to active income (The income that one has to work/spend his time on). Finally, we get to explore 8 benefits or pros of network marketing but in doing so he terms them “assets”:

  1. A Real-World Business Education
    Author and John both explain how it provides one of the most practical business education which cannot be learned at any business school. One can get a financial education too as this is never taught. As John explains key essential elements of real-world education:
    • An attitude of success
    • Dressing for success
    • Overcoming personal fears, doubts, and lack of confidence
    • Overcoming the fear of rejection
    • Communication skills
    • People skills
    • Time-management skills
    • Accountability skills
    • Practical goal-setting
    • Money-management skills
    • Investing skills
  2. A Profitable Path of Personal Development
    Here he talks more about how it helps you develop soft skills and changes your approach to life as a whole and makes you a better person.
  3. A Circle of Friends Who Share Your Dreams and Values
    Since it involves a network, the author here shows how it can help you make real connections with like-minded people, who would help you develop, as your goals are similar and not conflicting.
  4. The Power of Your Own Network
    The author shows us the power of the network and how powerful it is because of Metcalfe’s Law

    Network’s output grows exponentially and not linearly.

  5. A Duplicable, Fully Scalable Business
    Here author talks us through the how’s and why’s of network marketing. He explains the power of duplication the essence of a scalable business and cites examples of Henry Ford and Edison for creating networks through simple and duplicatable designs.
  6. Incomparable Leadership Skills
    He also talks about leadership skills and their development through network marketing. He explains how helping and motivating others to achieve their goals creates a leader inside of you.
  7. A Mechanism for Genuine Wealth Creation
    Here the author gives his mantra of wealth creation and separates the idea of wealth and money. Wealth is measured in time and not money. Following is his four-step path to financial freedom:
    • Build a business
    • Reinvest in your business
    • Invest in real estate
    • Let your assets buy luxuries
  8. Big Dreams and the Capacity to Live Them
    Finally, the author stresses the value of dreams and also models different types of dreamers. He talks about how network marketing is an ideal path to start living a dream instead of just dreaming, though he stresses on this not being the only one.

There is also a section where his wife Kim Kiyosaki talks in a motivational tone about how women’s innate ability to connect with others makes them ideal and excel in network marketing business.

Part 3

In the final section titled “Your Future Starts Now”, the author finally sets us free with a knowledge and few things to care while pursuing this path (i.e. entering into network marketing business).

  • Who’s running the ship?
  • Does the company offer a proven plan of action?
  • Does the company embrace both business skills and personal development as a regular part of its educational and training programs?
  • Does the company have a strong, high-quality, and highly marketable product line that you can be passionate about?

Read here for the things to keep in mind.The author also tells us that it takes no degree, no resignation from a regular job, no genius but plain honesty to achieve real wealth. He tells us how network marketing is a democratic way of wealth creation and it takes only persistence and sincerity towards one’s own dream to achieve it. He hopes for the readers to take a small step towards their happiness as real wealth creation is not just about money but the quality of life.

My Review

The book is quite engaging and the author does not make you feel like you are reading it. It has more of a TED tone(motivational speech) to it. I personally found this book an eye opener. I do not support or advertise network marketing and encourage you all to read more before making a decision. Here is a contradictory blog. Nevertheless, there were a lot of takeaways, but the one that I feel strongly about is to make an effort to start something. As kids we are provided an education to be employees(or at max to be freelancers/self-employed), so breaking this barrier and moving towards attaining real wealth (not just money), can only be achieved from books, experiences of others and most importantly taking the first baby steps. Most of us don’t have the friends/company to tell us how to be financially free, as rich hangout with the rich; poor with the poor and middle class with the middle class.

” I don’t not have a rich dad to tell me the secret reciepe of real wealth, thats why I have books “

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