Fortune’s 6-page profile on me

Ramit Sethi

So Fortune did a 6-page profile on me, and I want to talk about that. But first, I thought I’d share a hilarious story behind the story…

Rewind a couple months. The reporter, Mina, had been following me around for a few days, and she came to Chicago to watch me give a keynote speech at this personal-finance blogger conference. Later that night, I threw a party for the conference people.

Now, most of you know I hate throwing events. I think this stems from college, when I would hold IWT classes…and nobody would come. Like a beaten child, I had trouble overcoming my past.

Anyway, every year I try to overcome at least 2 big personal barriers, and this year, it was throwing events. So I throw this party, which I had intended to be at a quiet lounge. Somehow, some wires got crossed, and it ended up being at a club. Not a quiet lounge, a STRAIGHT UP CLUB with a DJ and go-go dancers. I was in heaven.

I’m milling around and I spot this 23-year-old dude who is on the PROWL. You know the look — like he’s a prehistoric hunter, searching out his prey (women), using all the tools at his disposal (spiky hair). Turns out he’s a fellow blogger. He comes up to me and says, “Hey Ramit. I spoke to that Fortune reporter of yours.” He says this suggestively like something filthy has already happened. I’m intrigued.

I said, “Yeah? How was that?”

He goes, “Good, man.” He leans in and smirks. “I told her how your techniques got me laid.”

I almost spit my fucking drink out. This is a national reporter following me around for a major profile and I was not trying to have some delinquent story hit the press. So I slowly say, “Uhh…sounds good dude” Then I made my way over to her and casually asked, “Hey…how’s it going? Everything good? So…did you meet that dude?”

This is where it gets hilarious.

She says, “YES! He told me your techniques got him laid!” I started to say something, and then she interrupted —

“AND, do you know what else he said?” I shook my head, praying.

Keep in mind it’s 11:45pm at a loud club where people are grinding on each other, and this young reporter has been completely professional, nursing one drink for like an hour. Apparently this dude had looked her up and down, looked at his watch, then said (with a smirk on his face): “So…you off the clock?”

HAHA. I died laughing. This 23-year-old dude tried to spit his futile game at a Fortune reporter with hilarious results. I begged her to put it in the article, but alas, it didn’t make the cut…

So, here’s the article:

One more thing:

I’m really proud of this article. When Fortune looked for the person in the field of personal finance and behavioral change, they came to me, and that’s flattering. It elevates everything we’ve been doing at I Will Teach You To Be Rich to another stage. I find that pretty exciting.

But it’s not just about me. In fact, there are tons of writers with incredibly good material…but without a massive movement of readers, it’s difficult to break through. Not just readers, but the fact that you trust me enough to read my material and apply it to your life. I take that seriously.

When I started this site, it was a rinky-dink blog. I didn’t make a cent off it for years because it was just this random hobby. But over time, the articles resonated with you, and you stuck around, giving me your time and attention. Some of you joined my courses or bought my book. Together, we all grew towards living a rich life.

Overall, it’s an incredible feeling to listen and learn about what we’re ACTUALLY going through — unlike some 68-year-old geezer lecturing us to stop spending money on lattes. Instead, it’s someone who understands we WANT to live a rich life. We WANT to go out and buy a round of drinks for our friends. We EXPECT to be able to travel abroad, or go to Vegas for the weekend, or grab dinner without worrying if we can afford an appetizer.

So, I want you to see this Fortune article, not just because I’m proud of being recognized on a national stage, but because it’s only possible with a readership that takes action. Honestly, there are a lot of blogs with larger readerships than IWT…but none have readers that take action like you. I know this quantitatively (when I show my metrics to a few close friends, they almost shit their pants) and qualitatively (since I intentionally repel whiners and complainers off this site, telling them to go check out a frugality blog to save $0.25 on laundry sheets). That leaves you and me — both of us committed to taking action.

So, thanks for the opportunity. Thanks for listening and telling me when my stuff resonates, and when it sucks. And thanks for sticking around, because this is just the beginning. 2012 is going to knock your socks off.

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  1. Michael

    Congrats !

  2. Frank

    Congratulations, Ramit! I earned my first $1000 on the side last month and your advice was a contributing factor to my success!

  3. poor man in a hard life

    wow man, what an inspiring post. You deserve it. You are really honest, agressive, and you are not that kind of boring blogger with stupid advices to save cents in paper towel.


  4. Susan Strayer

    Have I mentioned I love your authenticity? Fantastic article.

  5. Sunil from The Extra Money Blog

    Congratulations Ramit

  6. Jesse Gernigin

    Hey Ramit congrats on the article! The writing was great and honest and I think it will serve you incredibly well for the future. As America’s Gentleman Magician I get to brag about my financial freedom because your writing made me focus on creating a system that’s best for me. Keep at it!

  7. Victoria @ My Daily Cuppa

    Well I learned two things about you that I didn’t know before:
    1) You are only 29!! What??
    2) You are Asian and unmarried! Your parents must be disappointed in you!! LoL

    Fantastic article and fantastic blog. I was happy to read that it took you a while to figure out what sort of direction you wanted to go in with your writing. This is currently my problem. I know that the more I write, the more I will see where my natural talents and interests lie.

    I look forward to hearing more about the people who signed up for your Dream Job course. Did you eventually find someone to give the scholarship place to?

    Have a great 2012

  8. Mike

    Congrat Ramit, btw what do you think of the interpretation of the same article by Rehan Salam, I don’t know if the link will get posted or not, but here it is.

  9. Girija


    Wow man! Have been following your blog for years now .. putting a system together as a way to get things done resonates big time with me. My husband and I have applied many of his strategies and they have always worked .. cell phone bill to bank account recommendations, handling credit card quirks and discovering James Bragg – done it all! Thanks a ton 🙂

  10. Sharon

    Congratulations Ramit! I’m happy for you.

    I am one of your older followers. Much of what you write about can be applied to anyone but is mostly geared to people your age. If you ever have the need or can take the time, it would be great to expand your market to target 40 and 50 year olds. Often these people are not formally educated (or if they are, it is outdated). It is heart-breaking to see ‘older’ people losing jobs and their homes while trying to get rehired somewhere (which is probably not going to happen).

    These people are already older and aren’t necessarily looking for a career. They just want to work, make a contribution, and develop some self-worth. Maybe some writings about getting on their feet or advise on changing paths or less expensive workshops? Some are so lost and overwhelmed they don’t know where to begin and are embarrased to talk about it. Please help.

  11. Maureen

    I got my copy of Fortune tonight. When I checked my RSS feed and saw your update, I cracked the magazine opened and read the spread. Seriously, I thought it was too short and didn’t do you justice!

    LOL at the author’s BOA card! And she works at Fortune?

    It was a good primer for your personality that we all love-hate, but it was also good for explaining to Fortune readers the plight of Gen Y and the rapidly vanishing stability of the job market.

    Hope your next Expose is A-OK!

  12. Evan

    Congrats, Ramit. You were one of the innovators that inspired me to start my own blog years ago!

  13. KC @ PsychoMoney

    Way to go. Keep up the good work and I am sure there will be much more to come in 2012.

  14. Divya

    Congratulations! Completely deserved.

  15. Natalia

    Hey Ramit,
    I’m sure you hear from other Stanford alumni … so here’s one more: Congrats on this article; very well deserved indeed!

    You ROCK! I really dig your stuff and wish you the best of luck. If only the stuff you teach was taught more deliberately on college campus. Keep it up, it’s always fun to see what you’ll come up with next.

    Natalia Gabrea ’95

  16. Maxime


    You know you must get into her head but still you don’t make her feel comfortable when she first meet you. You should be ashamed of yourself :).

    Well, she learned you’re the best, that’s the most important.

    All the best,

  17. Pete M

    What was the technique?

  18. Annie Andre ( Chief Adventurologist)

    Ramit, This is so great for you. I still remember the time i was in Barnes and Nobles and looked over in the finance section and saw you r book. I said to my two boys that the photo of the man on the book liked like someone i knew and worked with before. Then as i got closer i saw your name on the book. I was floored and elated for you at the same time. I remember what an entrepreneurial spirit you had and obviously still do in spades. So enjoy it Ramit. You sound like you are still well grounded despite all your success.

  19. IWantToShare

    Ramit, why dont you add Google+ sharing to our site? Its becoming popular lately

  20. Angelica Olstad

    Ramit, it’s nice to see such an honest portrayal of you. There have been times I thought some of your blog posts seemed a little ‘asshole-ey’ and I considered unsubscribing. However, I realized that if your posts were getting under my skin it was probably because you were speaking truths I just didn’t want to hear. I’ve been freelancing yoga/music for 6 months now and almost make the same as I did at my salaried office job using your 3 client rule and automated payment plans alone. By this time next year I plan on doubling my income and recrafting my career to do be doing more of the things I want to be doing. In particular, your recent post on niche markets really got me going on a side project I’ve been holding off on doing forever. Thanks and keep up the tough love.

  21. James Slagowski

    Hey Ramit, Great article. Congratulations and hope your subscription base grows because of it. However, the recognition is great. Thank you for your advice over the years and I hope to hear more from you. Take care.

  22. Alex F

    Congratulations! Way to go Ramit!

    I love that anecdote about r/amit with the registrar…that’s like the opening scene of a brilliant novel

  23. Vinod

    Congrats Ramit…

  24. Chetan

    Your journey is inspirational & your book changed my finances for the better.
    Congratulations. It must feel great to become successful while offering a truly noble service.

  25. Max

    You deserve the recognition, Ramit! I was delighted that I could contribute to the article by poking fun at you. Your attitude and your work have inspired me for a long time, and I definitely wouldn’t have my dream job & my student loans nearly paid down right now if it weren’t for you. Thank you!

  26. Pam

    Congratulations! Great piece.

  27. Glen Craig

    Haha, I think I know who that spikey-haired guy was.

    Congrats on the Fortune spread! Your material always opens my eyes on how I look at things.

  28. jerry

    thats a real honour for you ramit, and its amazing that the big guys at fortune took you seriously. it would a high point in any bloggers life im sure .keep up the good work.