Monday, July 12, 2010

Why Financial Knowledge is Not Enough

For most people, financial knowledge is actually easily acquired through the internet, books, friends or various other sources. Financial knowledge is simply the simple know-hows of basic financial planning. Yet, it is perhaps surprising that even when many people do possess this knowledge, not many actually act upon it. In a certain sense, having financial knowledge is not enough to guarantee financial success.

Financial knowledge is not enough by itself. It is akin to knowing about healthy living and eating but still being overweight and living a very unhealthy lifestyle. When I am choosing what to eat for lunch or dinner, I know what are the healthy food choices. I know that I ought to stay away from fizzy drinks. I know that I ought to exercise alot more. Yet even when I am armed with all this knowledge, I do not act upon it. I continue to eat unhealthy food and skip my planned exercise sessions. What results (love handles, tummy, failing IPPT) is not due to my lack of knowledge about healthy living.

The same case applies to most people when it comes to financial knowledge. They might know the need to save and invest their money. They know the importance of planning for their retirement. They know the importance of insurance. The problem is not really a lack of knowledge. The problem is that they fail to act upon it. I know of people who are well-versed in terms of financial knowledge but whose financial health itself are in a "mess".

In Bloom;s Taxonomy of Learning, it has been identified that people need to acquire Knowledge (K), Skills (S) and Attitude (A). As such, we can see that knowledge is just part of the entire learning process. Having knowledge alone does not mean you will succeed. It is an interplay between the K, the S and the A.

Financial Knowledge is not enough. We need to act upon that knowledge. We need to work on our attitudes that are so ingrained within us.


  1. First seek knowledge and then build up skills ...

  2. And discipline and patient too.

  3. Skills and Attitude actually play a more important role in my opinion. Basic financial planning like don't spend more than you earn and stuff can be learnt in a single day. But really being disciplined is the difficult part.


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