by Ted Richards

Click to listen to the latest episode of The Richards Report with Scott Galloway.

I first came across Scott when I heard about and read his new book, The Algebra of Happiness. I found it really interesting for many reasons. It’s a book about happiness and, at a time when so many try to portray a falsely perfect image of their lives on social media, Scott is very open and raw about his past mistakes. I think this makes the book even more interesting.

He is a professor of marketing at New York University’s Stern School of Business. He’s also a public speaker and co-host of the fantastic podcast Pivot (which I’m now a very big fan of).

His first book, The Four, was all about big tech and the hidden DNA of Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google. It too was a bestseller. As you may have already noticed, one is a book about tech and platforms, and his other book is about happiness. We discuss how these two very different book topics came about (and his publisher’s nervousness about this approach).

In recent months Scott has become even more well known for his position on the WeWork business. He was the first, and also the loudest, to call out the high valuations on this year’s planned WeWork IPO and questioned the value that Soft Bank was pumping into the WeWork business through Vision Fund 1.

WeWork became an iconic failed IPO in a matter of weeks, maybe even days, going from a planned $47 billion valuation to about a fifth of that amount. The catalyst for this was Scott refusing to simply follow the crowd and buy into the hype of what was clearly marketed as an exciting IPO. This highlights the importance of not simply being seduced by the sizzle of marketing when it comes to new investments.

Scott talks about the inverse relationship between the sex appeal of the business and returns. Guest speaker billionaires at NYU (and other people of note) often tell his students to follow their passions. He believes that this isn’t always great advice as often the people giving the advice made their money doing the opposite (e.g. these billionaires often come from cabling, smelting, or industries like moving and transporting asbestos, not the movie or restaurant industries, which are far more exciting).

When it comes to investing you can’t get a high return without taking a certain level of risk. One of the first things we do at Six Park is assess our clients’ attitude to risk through our risk assessment.

Ultimately, Scott says, as attractive it is to focus on your salary and what you earn, it’s what you spend that really counts. The benefits of a passive income or a growing investment portfolio to help ensure you make more than you spend is what is required to generate real wealth.

Six Park can set up and manage your own diversified portfolio to create your own passive income. To set up your portfolio click ‘Get Started’ at the bottom of the page.

Published November 22, 2019