Jean Chatzky
Think you need a Harvard degree to get rich? Think again, says Robert Shemin, author of How Come This Idiot's Rich and I'm Not? Robert talks with Jean about the simple things you really need to make money and how to keep yourself out of financial trouble once you have it.

There are two types of people, according to Robert: rich idiots and RUBs (people who do things right, but are upside-down and broke). Rich idiots aren't dumb, but they aren't necessarily the smartest people in the room and often don't have college degrees, Robert says. What they do have is a defined goal, and they take action on that goal. In addition, Robert says, rich idiots know that making money is a team sport, so they ask for help.

RUBs go wrong, Robert says, because no one taught them how to make money. Instead, they were taught to keep up with the Joneses, so whatever they make, they spend. Often, RUBs think you have to spend money to make money or that you have to be incredibly smart to start a business or invest successfully, neither of which are true, he says.

If you want to be a rich idiot (or just rich), Robert says you need to start by boiling down your goals into a one-page mission plan. Think about what your perfect day of work (or play) would be, and make a simple action plan to get there. Once you have a plan, there's only one way to get wealthy over time, Robert says: owning assets like stocks, bonds or real estate. If you put in the time and effort to search out deals, Robert says, the rewards can be great.