Stop monkeying about
…and become a millionaire
AFTER READING The Millionaire Maker I realised – with deep regret and resignation – that I’ll never become one. I think it’s because I can’t imagine coming up with a concept like The Millionaire Maker. The Millionaire Maker, by Matthias Schmeltz, is proudly being sold as Most Expensive Book Ever Published! And by all accounts Mr Schmeltz is doing very well out of it, in fact I think he’s added many to the millions he already has from selling Rainbow vacuum cleaners by getting people to buy his masterpiece (his words, not mine).
I just can’t imagine poor people – and everyone who’s not a millionaire these days is poor – doling out $995 (R7 363) for a 437page motivational book. You can pick up the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People for R20 in the bargain bin at CNA. Who Moved My Cheese? can be found in millions of suburban bathrooms around the world. If you buy The Most Expensive Book Ever Published! you begin a full seven grand further away from your dreams. The Millionaire Maker is a collection of aphorisms, short motivational articles, the odd inspirational poem, billionaire biographies and bucket loads of advice and quotations.
Socrates and Lincoln feature, but here’s one from a Paul J Meyer: “What you can vividly imagine, ardently desire, sincerely believe in, enthusiastically act on, must inevitably come to pass.” That’s what I tell myself every Wednesday and Saturday night queuing outside Seven Eleven for Lotto tickets.
The short chapters are crammed choca-block with common sense stuff. In the chapter How to Make Your First Million, we’re told not to make the mistakes monkeys make (if something doesn’t work immedi- ately, monkeys drop it and look for something else). I became a bit discouraged after reading this, but was relieved to find 100 pages later the chapter Becoming a Millionaire is Only a Matter of Time.
In Change Your Questions, Change Your Life! there are examples of 10 wrong questions and 10 good questions. “Why can’t I remember?” is a wrong question. A good question is: “How did I remember last time?” My question is: What if you can’t remember how you remembered last time?
Part VII, Investments, is quite peculiar. Schmeltz is not a great believer in the stock market. He says you should put your money in land, gold and specifically timber, which is “ready for a big bounce”. The potted biographies of billionaires we, the readers, should emulate include not only the usual ones like Bill Gates and Richard Branson, but also Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal and Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid al Maktoum.
These are surprising choices. Prince Alwaleed’s uncle is the King of Saudi Arabia and Sheikh Mohammed owns Dubai.
But you can’t disagree with Mr Schmeltz’s logic here: being born into the royal family of an oilrich country is a sure-fire way of becoming a millionaire.
My own advice is cut straight to the chase: the page and a half on The Purpose of Life starts on page 219. It wasn’t written by Mr Schmeltz.
* Finweek is giving away a copy of The Millionaire Maker ($995). It includes a carry case, a voucher worth 500 euro for a one-hour consultation with the author, a Mont Blanc Marker and the chance to win a Mediterranean cruise.
Send your ideas on how to make a million to firstname.lastname@example.org to stand a chance.