The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision – Helen Keller
A strong believer of the above quote, Piyush Rakhecha suffered visual impairment when he was just four years old. Since then, he cannot read or recognize faces. But this did not stop him from cracking the CAT exam and getting into IIM Raipur. He takes the help of a few software and apps designed for the visually challenged to read and write.
“I went through many hardships to prepare for the CAT exam. As I am visually impaired, no coaching class had the facilities to teach me. They just provided me with the mock test and I had to limit myself to learning just through that,” recalls Piyush. During his MBA, he was the one of 30 students who were selected for a student exchange programme in France.
Piyush developed a keen interest in finance and investment after reading The Intelligent Investor, a bestseller by Benjamin Graham. “The book has inspired me on how to manage money and finances. In fact, I started advising my friends on their finances as most of them had work experience and had tasted money,” says Piyush.
Gradually he turned his passion into business. He started his advisory business soon after completing his MBA. “I drew inspiration from my brother-in-law, Kanak Jain. I saw him grow from the scratch. Also, having a business background, I always wanted to do something on my own; getting into financial services seemed the best choice,” says Piyush.
His initial clients were his immediate relatives and a few friends from IIM Raipur. To increase his client base further, he took the help of his friends who encouraged Piyush by putting testimonials of his work and services on social media groups. “I have received many prospects from these testimonials. Of my 100 clients, I have acquired 43 from this activity alone,” shares Piyush.
Talking about how he onbaords clients, Piyush says that he follows a structured approach to convert a prospect into clients. “I believe in approaching clients through process. Whenever a client approaches me, I first make him identify his financial goals and explain to him the significance of mutual fund investments. Though I cannot see, I make my clients visualise their goals,” says Piyush.
Another formula that he swears by is the power of storytelling. “Stories move people emotionally. Instead of using jargon or numbers, I tell them case studies in the form of a story. People can relate to a story more than any academic theory. In my experience, storytelling can do wonders for your business,” says Piyush.
Today Piyush has a client base of over 100 clients. He acquired them in just 16 months. Currently, he manages an AUM of Rs.5.75 crore. He has a small team of three people. Talking about his future plans, he says that he wants to cross an AUM of Rs.50 crore and grow his SIP book to Rs.1 crore by 2022.
Piyush’s life story teaches us that if you have the right attitude and approach towards a challenge, nothing can stop you from being a success.