With more than 20 years of personal finance experience, including formal training as a licensed Financial Advisor and Investment Advisor Representative, Ramat Oyetunji works with organizations and individuals to promote and improve Financial Wellness.
Check out more interviews with entrepreneurs here.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO GET FEATURED?
All interviews are 100% FREE OF CHARGE
Table of Contents
We are thrilled to have you join us today, welcome to ValiantCEO Magazine’s exclusive interview! Let’s start off with a little introduction. Tell our readers a bit about yourself and your company.
Ramat Oyetunji: Hello! My name is Ramat Oyetunji and I am the Founder & CEO of The FI Woman, LLC. I retired in 2021 at 44, one year earlier than my original plan to “FIRE” (Financial Independence Retire Early) at 45.
I graduated from the University of Maine in 2001 with a BS in Mechanical Engineering and in 2005, with an MBA.
I established The FI Woman in 2015 as a Registered Investment Advisor, with the mission of showing women how to achieve financial independence by becoming savvy stock market investors. My original mission has since evolved beyond teaching about the stock market, to promoting financial literacy, personalized coaching, workshops, and helping companies establish Financial Wellness programs that engage, and support employees.
I published my first personal finance book “Fifty Shades of Green: A Stock Market Guide” in 2015, and have since published two more personal finance books, including one for kids that I co-authored with my 9-year-old daughter in 2021. All the books are available on Amazon.
Since retiring, I have had the opportunity to get involved in various community activities, and I currently sit on the board of the LEAD Scholarship Foundation Inc.
If you were in an elevator with Warren Buffet, how would you describe your company, your services or products? What makes your company different from others? What is your company’s biggest strength?
Ramat Oyetunji: My company helps individuals understand their finances, and helps them feel confident about their financial future by identifying the financial goals that matter most to them, understanding the obstacles or limiting beliefs they face, and developing a plan that works for them.
My company is different because I focus on educating my clients, not just advising them and creating a financial plan. My goal is to improve my clients’ financial literacy while helping them plan the financial future they want.
My company’s biggest strength is my financial knowledge and empathy. Both allow me to connect with clients on a personal level and create the best plan that helps them achieve their goals.
In the past year, what is the greatest business achievement you’d like to celebrate with your team? Please share the details of that success.
Ramat Oyetunji: We successfully launched workshops and a summer camp for kids age 9-12.
The workshops and summer camp introduced more than 20 kids age 9-12 to various financial concepts. The kids were engaged, asked a lot of questions, and were excited to learn about starting their own business, making a budget and growing their money by becoming investors.
It was a very fulfilling experience to promote financial literacy early to these kids. My 9-year-old daughter helped to engage the kids by sharing her experience starting a business. Having her involved in the workshops and summer camp gave the kids a better experience than if they were only listening to an adult.
What advice do you wish you received when you started your business journey and what do you intend on improving in the next quarter?
Ramat Oyetunji: The advice I wish I received early on when I started my business, is understanding that running a business is a marathon not a sprint!
I would hear of other entrepreneurs and their success stories, and it seemed they achieved success in a short time. I was in a hurry to also achieve success quickly, but I have learned that it takes time to build a successful business. No one becomes successful overnight!
The other advice I wish I had received was understanding that the needs of my clients/customers might be different from what I think they are, and it is important to listen and observe closely.
I started The FI Woman wanting to make the stock market easier to understand and accessible to others, so they could use it to build wealth. I later realized that the audience I was targeting needed better basic financial literacy before they could grasp some of the investing concepts I was sharing. Understanding this helped me create better and more meaningful content for my audience.
In the next quarter, as part of streamlining and focusing my services, I plan to work with small to mid-sized businesses to provide Financial Wellness programs to their employees. These programs have been shown to engage, support, and retain employees.
Here is a two fold question: What is the book that influenced you the most and how? Please share some life lessons you learned. Now what book have you gifted the most and why?
Ramat Oyetunji: The book that influenced me the most was Robert Kiyosaki’s Cashflow Quadrant.
I read it in 2006 and it changed the way I thought about earning and investing money. I have read a lot of personal finance books (Millionaire next door, The Intelligent Investor, to name a few of my favs), and I have learned something from every one of them, but the Cashflow Quadrant is the one that changed my mindset and influenced the way I thought about money the most.
The biggest life lesson/takeaway for me was understanding that not all ways of earning money are created equal and that HOW you earn money matters.
The book I have gifted the most is my book “Fifty Shades of Green: A Stock Market Guide”
The reason I gift this book the most is because I get asked a lot of questions about the stock market, and I believe the book does a great job of simplifying and breaking down the stock market so that anyone can understand it.
Christopher Hitchens, an American journalist, is quoted as saying that “everyone has a book in them” Have you written a book? If so, please share with us details about it. If you haven’t, what book would you like to write and how would you like it to benefit the readers?
Ramat Oyetunji: Yes! I have written THREE personal finance books, and I have a fourth book on the way (Publish date is Dec 16, 2022).
I published my first book “Fifty Shades of Green: A Stock Market Guide” in 2015.
I wanted to write a book that helped women understand the stock market and encouraged them to invest and grow their money. I wanted to make it a “fun” book about the stock market so I used a mall analogy and tried to incorporate everyday experiences into the book.
My second book “Kids and Money: The 5 Stacks Method” was co-authored with my 9-year-old daughter.
In the book we describe how she started a car cleaning business in the neighborhood and how she divided the money she earned into 5 stacks so that she wouldn’t spend it all. It’s a cute book and very easy for kids to read and understand.
My third book “Transform Your Finances” is a very detailed 7-week daily planner.
The book provides daily actions for 7 weeks, and is aimed to help improve your financial wellness.
My fourth book “One Year After FIRE” details my experiences in early retirement over the past year. It’s a personal retelling of how my first year in retirement has been; it is honest, vulnerable and very transparent.
All my books are available on Amazon.
In your experience, what tends to be the most underestimated part of running a company? Can you share an example?
Ramat Oyetunji: Running a business is both challenging and exhilarating. I think the most underestimated part of running a business is marketing and generating sales. Just because you develop a great product or service doesn’t mean people will know about it or buy it.
On more than one occasion I have put a lot of energy and resources into creating a workshop, or content, or materials and finding only to find that I don’t have an audience to see my amazing creation! Now I know to build the audience even as I am creating the service or product. It’s still a work in progress!
I am continuing to learn about the best ways to market my services and products (books) and how to best generate leads/sales. I know that I provide excellent service. I know that my books will help people. I know that I create the best financial plans for my clients. But how do I get my target audience to also know that? Then, how do I get them to take action? These are questions every business asks and tries to answer.
On a lighter note, if you had the ability to pick any business superpower, what would it be and how would you put it into practice?
Ramat Oyetunji: It would be the ability to show people their future!
If I had this super power, I would show potential clients how using my services would give them a better financial future. If they can see it, they are more likely to believe it!
Jed Morley, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank Ramat Oyetunji for taking the time to do this interview and share her knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with Ramat Oyetunji or her company, you can do it through her – Linkedin Page
Disclaimer: The ValiantCEO Community welcomes voices from many spheres on our open platform. We publish pieces as written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Community stories are not commissioned by our editorial team and must meet our guidelines prior to being published.