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DN226 – Throwback: Rashad Bilal: EYL and the Culture of Financial Literacy

Here’s a snapshot of a few things we talked about…

  •         Introduction [00:00:00]
  •         Who is the Clark Kent, When It Comes to David? [00:01:01]
  •         Where Did His Passion for Business and Finance Come from? [00:03:58]
  •         Challenges He Faced Earlier in His Career [00:07:36]
  •         As a Financial Advisor, What Does He Teach in the Beginning? [00:11:38]
  •         How Does He Educate His Clients About Debt? [00:13:25]
  •         How Can You Minimize Debt? [00:15:18]
  •         Where To Start if You Want to Invest in the Stock Market? [00:22:08]
  •         His Mindset When They Started the Podcast and How They Built It Up [00:29:14]
  •         His Point of View on Being Neural [00:32:29]
  •         Do They Tell Their Guests to be Neutral? [00:35:03]
  •         What is Their Future Goal with the Podcast? [00:36:30]
  •         His Number One Takeaway from the Keys to Success [00:37:32]
  •         His Advice for People Looking to Take Action [00:43:14]


In This Episode You’ll Learn:

In this throwback episode, Casanova and Rashad talk about the importance of education about financial literacy, debt management, and investments.

Rashad grew up as a regular kid, who enjoyed playing sports. His first goal in life was to be a basketball player, and go to NBA. He says that was always interested in business as well. His basketball career didn’t flourish after college, so he decided that he was going to try to be a financial advisor.

Rashad enjoys helping people. He started a social media campaign on Instagram to promote his financial planning business. However, it morphed into more of an educational forum. People gravitated towards the content being shared, and that led to him starting the Earn Your Leisure with his partner.

He says that Earn Your Leisure while business in general, it tells a story. They talk about sports and entertainment, and their financial side. Talking about where his passion for business originated, Rashad credits his father for teaching him being an entrepreneur, controlling your own destiny and finances.

Rashad lives in Westchester, where he moved from Bronx at the age of 10. He says that Westchester is like most places in America, where it’s segregated. The neighborhood he grew up in is a really interesting place because it’s a middle-class neighborhood, and is a tight knit community.

Rashad says that when he first started at the age of 24, a lot of his first clients were actually his sister’s friends or my brother’s friends, whom he had relationships with, and they trusted him. Those relationships really helped him during the first year of his career.

He adds that he teaches financial literacy in the summertime, because he realized how much people don’t know when it comes to financial literacy. Rashad is a big proponent of this educational process. For him, it always starts with education. Then, different products or what makes sense individually or different things that person can do.

Rashad adds that there are different types of debts, but you should try to pay them off as soon as possible. While some debts like student loans might not be easy to pay, you should try to pay others, like credit card loans. Pay those off first, if you can, or at least keep it a manageable level.

As for the students, he says that for the undergrads, go to a state school or the lowest costing school possible, especially if you’re planning on getting a master’s degree. You can get into any good master’s program if you have good transcripts. You stand to save significant amount of money, and save yourself from student loan.

Aside from the financial standpoint, you actually get yourself together because leaving high school going into college is a whole different realm. So now you can actually prep, get yourself together, learn the inner workings of college and get a college degree, or an associate degree under your belt.

Rashad adds that if you are going to be entrepreneurial, if you’re going to be a real estate investor, it doesn’t matter, nobody cares. Nobody’s going to ask you what your degree is when you go to the bank to try to get a loan.

Talking about where to invest, he says that you should not put money into anything if you don’t have knowledge. So the first thing you want to do is educate yourself. He is a big proponent and investing in something that you’re interested in. He adds that you should read about the companies that you’re interested in, as reading will help you a lot.

He adds that the good thing about the stock market is that most of the stocks in the sector are kind of intertwined with each other, learning about one stock will help you understand others. Talking about Earn Your Leisure podcast, Rashad says that they started it without any prior knowledge or experience in podcasting and without any expectations.

Rashad says that he pays attention to detail a lot and a lot of times, especially in social media, people pay attention to the look more than the concept. The content is more important. Their videos get a lot of traction because they have actually real good content.

Rashad says that he never wants to influence his point of view on somebody else because that’s not his job. He says that his job is just to inform, and then from there people can create their own dialogue and make their own decisions. That’s his whole philosophy on life, and middle ground is where he’s comfortable at.

They just provide information and it’s actually helped them because that’s created a lot of dialogue. Similarly, as their platform is an educational thing, their guests do not provide too much of their opinion per se, but more so information.

Talking about something that he learned from successful CEOs is work ethic. The reason why most people aren’t as successful on social media is that they’re not consistent. The successful people are always consistent and have tremendous work ethic.

Talking about his team, Rashad says that they network and reach out to their talented friends, and offer them incentives. When they created Earn Your Leisure, it is really like a family thing where they all know each other.

He adds that you have to encourage, he is a big proponent of encouragement. Encouragement goes a lot long, lot further than discipline, and you have to know what each person’s short point is. Furthermore, once you stop really caring about what people think, your life will transform.


Key Quotes:

  •         “I was posting a lot of stories about like entertainers and sports figures, but like the backside of it, the business side of it, and people gravitate towards that…”
  •         “[Our parents] don’t teach us to be entrepreneurial because they, they’re not familiar with entrepreneurship themselves. So, my dad played a major part in that, and that’s something that I was fortunate to have somebody like that…”
  •         “My springboard into the business was just relationships, which is still to this day, that’s the most important thing relationships…”
  •         “I sit down with somebody, I’ll spend like the first hour, just educating them on a variety of different topics and not even, we don’t even go into anything personal…”
  •         “I think that’s one of the biggest mistakes where people don’t, they don’t ask enough questions. And there’s not enough people that’s really willing to just give information….”
  •         “Debt is always something that you want to try to pay off…”
  •         “I’m a big proponent in trying to avoid debt, stay out of debt if you, if you can, especially those kinds of debts, even with kids going to college, it’s important to understand student loan…”
  •         “In New York we have a program called The Excelsior program, something like that. Whereas if you’re family is making under $125,000, you can go to any state school for free…”
  •         “I know people that went to community college and then went to Harvard and Yale and NYU after…”
  •         “People want to get rich with contingencies. Nobody really wants to sacrifice…”
  •         “It’s like the cost of a college degree is getting more expensive, but then the value of it is going down…” – Casanova Brooks
  •         “People do business with other people who they like, and they know, and they trust, and they believe in you…” – Casanova Brooks
  •         “I would suggest that anybody before you even think about investing in real estate, stocks, opening a business, fully educate yourself first and then think about investing…”
  •         “I would rather be an expert in one area, then know a little bit in like 10 different areas…”
  •         “People they’ll go rich for their appearance, but they won’t go broke for their kids and for the generational wealth…”
  •         “I encourage originality and not to worry about anything saturation, because it is saturated, but cream is always going to rise to the top and people always respect the good product…”
  •         “In the world that we live in right now, it’s either you all the way, right or you all the way left, there’s no middle ground and I’m a middle ground person…”
  •         “Almost 98% of our posts and our content is all middle ground…”
  •         “We just want to provide you the information and just have like an open dialogue and really just let you determine your own way…”
  •         “Our platform is, we try to make it like a college course every week. So, every week is a different topic, and we want to educate somebody every week…”
  •         “I honestly feel like as long as we just keep doing what we’re doing, educating good things will happen…”
  •         “So I feel like anybody can really be successful in anything. If you work hard enough, and you understand the principles of what you’re doing, but that’s something that’s easier said than done…”
  •         “Like the podcast is taken off the way it has taken off, because I actually put two years of working first, before we did the podcast…”
  •         “It’s like a lot of times people are scared to take action because they’re scared of failure…”
  •         “You gotta love the journey. Like, it’s not really, even about the angle, it’s about the journey and it’s like, you gotta be passionate about that…”


  •         How to Make Money in Stocks by William J. O’Neil
  •         Instagram @EarnYourLeisure
  •         Instagram @RashadBilal
  •         earnyourleisure.com
  •         bilalgroupllc.com

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