We have good news for you. You can have a cool career and make a good living. No need to choose between loving your job and paying your mortgage. The following profile, part of the BlackEnterprise.com Cool Jobs series, offers a peek into the nuts and bolts, perks and salaries behind enjoyable careers.
Having worked at financial institutions for years, the entrepreneur known as Ash Cash has set his sights on the bigger picture.
He not only gives financial advice, he gives inspirational guidance on a daily basis to help people get through their day. He enjoys giving back to the community in multiple ways and has even written a book or two—all in hopes of empowering you to make your life not only better, but easier.
BlackEnterprise.com talked with the former banking VP on how his passion motivates his work, how giving back plays into his career and how he’s been able to leverage financial literacy to motivate the masses.
BlackEnterprise.com: What led you down the path of educating people on finances and advising them of how to make their money work for them?
Ash Cash: I’ve been in banking and finance for the past 14 years, and when I look at the different clients that I’ve served as a financial manager for, I realize that the difference between the rich and the poor is merely knowledge. The rich understand how money works, and they know that you cannot solely rely on your physical labor in order to build wealth. Growing up in a low-income environment, I understand why many of us who are poor or are living paycheck to paycheck never get out of our situations. We have the wrong idea about wealth building and don’t prioritize, so my goal is to equip as many people as possible with the knowledge needed to begin to build generational wealth.
You’ve written 2 books, Mind Right, Money Right: 10 Laws of Financial Freedom and Taylor’s Way: Life Lessons Through The Eyes of a Three-Year Old. What inspired you to write the books?
My inspiration for Mind Right, Money Right came because I noticed that most finance books are written in a language that many of us can’t understand. I decided that what we need is a book that speaks specifically to us, using examples that we can relate to. Taylor’s Way was inspired by my daughter. It’s an inspirational book that teaches people how to tap into their inner child in order to live life the way it was meant to be lived.
You were once a VP at JPMorgan Chase Bank as well as assistant VP at Carver Federal Savings Bank. How have those positions shaped your entrepreneurial skills?
Being a bank officer was the best thing that happened to me as an entrepreneur. At JPMorgan Chase, I ran four branches and oversaw an $8 million dollar project. At Carver Federal Savings Bank, I managed the main office in Harlem, controlling over $180 million dollars in deposits.
What I learned running businesses for major corporations has indeed transferred over into my entrepreneurial endeavors, and my success as a business owner can definitely be directly tied to the training I received as a banker.
Being of the millennial generation, entrepreneurship suits me best. I’d rather work hard in my business knowing that all of that hard work will create wealth and ownership, as opposed to working for someone else and not being fully in control of my financial freedom. I say, if you can do both, then do both, but never allow yourself to be a slave to the paycheck. Everyone needs multiple streams of income.
You have a syndicated column, “The Daily Word,” that is featured on numerous sites. Where do you get the inspiration to do them?
My inspiration comes from everyday life. Whether it’s something that I’m dealing with personally, or a conversation I had with a client or friend, I think all experiences have lessons in them if you look at them the right way. We get our fair share of negativity when we turn on the TV, so my goal with “The Daily Word” is to put a positive spin on whatever one might be going through.
[As the Bible says], ‘as a man thinketh so shall he be, ‘ so with that in mind, I try to help people think positive and prosperous.
You’re passionate about giving back to the community, also serving on numerous boards. How does that tie into your career?
I grew up in the St. Nicholas Housing projects in Harlem, New York, and most of my friends are either dead or have some type of criminal background. For some reason, I was spared and knowing that my life could have gone in either direction makes me grateful everyday for all that I have. As someone who was able to become successful and overcome many adversities, I believe that it is my duty to give back. Besides drug dealers, entertainers, and athletes, our youth don’t see role models in their neighborhoods that they can relate to. So, those of us who were able to get out and make a way have to come back and show others that they have options.