Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 25 (If weeds are growing then the land is fertile)

Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 25 (If weeds are growing then the land is fertile)   (Yesterday, I was having lunch and my mother was across the table)   Mother: Chinmay, what are you thinking?   Me: Nothing.   Mother: Really? I can see it on your face that you are thinking something.   […]

Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 24 (How long can your business run without you?)

Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 24 (How long can your business run without you?) (It has been over a month since I posted the last episode-23 as my mother underwent cataract surgery last month. The doctor had advised her to take care and rest for at least a month. She is doing fine now, […]

Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 23 (Book smart v/s Street smart)

(I was sitting in our portico reading the book – “Stories at work” by Indranil Chakraborty. My mother joined with her regular cup of coffee.) Mother: Chinmay, what are you reading? Me: It is a book Indranil Chakraborty called “Stories at work”. Mother: What is it about? Me: The tagline says, it is a book […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 22 (Feminine values into finance)

(My mother’s aunt who is like my grandmother is at our home. I call her Kaveri Doddamma. There are N number of memorable moments spent with her from my childhood days. It is always exciting to have her home. Of course, when she and my mother are together they talk and talk and talk. I […]

Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 21 (Same money – different forms)

(My mother was doing some local shopping in Mangalore. She knows Mangalore better than I do as she was living here as a student back in the 70s. She usually goes to the same local vendors/place where she always shops. And she still prefers to pay them by cash. When they return the change (notes […]

Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 20 (FOCUS – Follow One Course Until Success)

(Next week we are going to Mangalore to celebrate the Navaratri (a festival that spans for nine nights), usually, my mother has a long shopping list before going there that includes fruits, sweets, vegetables, and whatnot. But the thing is she writes on whatever small piece of paper she gets, and sometimes even on a […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 19 (5 + 5 ÷ 5 = 2 or 6?)

(I was watching IPL cricket whilst my mother was reading some WhatsApp messages about the IPL auction. To my surprise my mother asked…) Mother: Chinmay, do you know this Australian cricket Glenn Maxwell? Me: hmm… yes, I know him but I am not sure if he knows me! Mother: (gave a sarcastic smile) Me: why? […]

Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 18 (What grows even at night?)

Mother: Chinmay, I heard that Government will be announcing a new scheme to take loans at a very nominal interest rate. Me: So? Mother: I wanted to check if you know anything about it? Me: Where did you hear about it? Was it someone from the WhatsApp university? Mother: (with a low voice) yes. Me: […]

Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 17 (A ₹/$ saved is a ₹/$ earned)

Mother: (with a cheeky look and voice) Mr. Chinmay, have you seen my engineer son? Me: (I knew where my mother was heading) hmm… tell me what needs to be fixed? Mother: the tap in the kitchen is leaking Mr. Engineer Me: So, you are asking a civil engineer (me) by qualification to do the […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 16 (It’s all numbers)

(Last week, I went to Chennai to attend my best friend’s wedding. The moment I returned home my mother started her interrogation) Mother: Chinmay, how was the wedding? Me: Good. Mother: Did they follow Covid protocols? Me: hmm… kind of, I along with other friends took precautions and were all vaccinated. Mother: How many of […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 15 (What’s plan-B & plan-C)

(15 mins drive from our farm there is a farmers market. My mother usually buys fresh vegetables from a particular vendor (let us call her Sita) as she knows her for a long time. As I accompany my mother by driving her at times to our farm, I get to meet Sita) My mother & I started […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 14 (your baby is ugly!)

(I overheard my mother speaking with someone on the phone with excitement. I got curious and stood there) Mother: (whilst speaking on the phone, she made a hand gesture) come here… Me: (went and sat next to her) what? Mother: (another hand gesture asking me to wait for 5 mins) After 10 mins… Mother: Chinmay, […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 13 (1 + 1 is not equal to 2)

(My mother was doing her own calculation with regards to the sale of mangoes, pulp and jam) Mother: (with a low voice) Chinmay, after doing the calculation it seems I have not made the money I thought I had made. Me: that’s good. Mother: what??? Me: oh… sorry, I said ‘good’ for doing the calculation. It […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 12 (how to build a Unicorn Startup?)

Mother: Chinmay, what’s a Unicorn? (I thought she was referring to the Unicorn doll that my niece plays with, and I said) Me: it is a mythical animal similar to a horse with a horn on its forehead. Mother: (gave a puzzled look and said), I am referring to this newspaper article that says there […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 11 (opportunity cost)

Mother: Chinmay, the bike of yours that is in the garage, you hardly use it. Why don’t you sell it? Me: (being a hardcore fan of the Royal Enfield Bullet I felt insulted and replied with a higher tone) MAAAA… it is not a bike! It is a Royal Enfield BULLET! Mother: whatever, it is […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 10 (difference between finance & accounting)

(Disclaimer: my intention is NOT to offend or degrade or belittle any profession or professional in this post. I am only expressing my views from a laymen’s perspective.) Mother: Chinmay, I met Sita (name changed) after a long time who runs her own business. I gave her a copy of your book and told her […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 9 (how much should a business owner aim to earn from their own business?)

(I am really fortunate and lucky to have many well-wishers, one of them is Carol Tan. She holds the Guinness world record for the largest collection of Cow-related items. Dr Carol Tan is a Program Manager of Master of Fashion Entrepreneurship at RMIT University where I teach the subject of business finance management. A few […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 8 (be a jack of many, master a few)

(Last Wednesday I posted on FB and WhatsApp promoting the mango pulp & jam that my mother made at home. In no time all the jams were sold and only a few pulp bottles are left. Got raving feedback from people who bought the pulp & jam. I casually asked my mother…) Me: Ma, from […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 7 (money never sleeps)

(4-5 mins read) Mother: Chinmay, I am thinking of taking a bank loan. Me: May I know for what? Mother: The new person who is taking care of our farm knows how to drive a tractor. So, I am thinking of buying a tractor. Me: Hmm… and how many times in a year will we […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 6 (Non-Performing Asset)

(Finally, I took a week off by taking my mother to Agumbe – it gets the highest rainfall in India and moreover, it is where my mother was born and brought up. My mother’s ancestral house is more than 300 years old. Her brothers and my cousins live there. They own areca nut plantations and […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 5 (Profit & cash)

(Earlier during the week, like most of you I had a long hectic day with back2back online meetings working from home. I decided to call it a day and came out of the room. As I was passing by the living room I overheard my mother talking to someone with excitement) Mother: (on the phone […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 4 (McD’s strategy)

Context: As the lockdown restriction was eased last week, my mother and I went to our farm. We have two patches of farmland that are 5 mins drive from each other. On one farm (we call it old farm) we mainly grow mangoes and on the other (we call it a new farm) we have […]

“Ma, me & mangoes” – Episode 3 (on break-even)

(my mother, father and I were in the living room) My mother: Chinmay, tell your father with the profit I made by selling mangoes I would like to further develop our farmland. Me: (gave a typical Indian head nod) My father was pretending as if he did not hear. Mother: re… ree (that is how […]

Ma, me & mangoes – Episode 2 (on pricing)

Mother: Chinmay, I don’t know what you had posted online last Sunday. I got so many calls from relatives & friends wishing me a ‘Happy wedding anniversary. Me: Ahh… you are welcome. Mother: Many also asked why did we sell the mangoes for only Rs. 50/kg? Me: because that is the number my friend mentioned […]

Ma, me & mangoes – Episode 1

Sunday, 30th May 2021 at 11 AM, My mother: Chinmay, you said, you’ll be helping me in selling our farm mangoes that were plucked earlier this week. Me: when will it get ripe? My mother: in a few days. Me: please express few days in numbers! My mother: 3-4 days Me: Ok, I’ll work on […]

Difference Between Profit & Money

What is Profit? A general understanding is Profit = Income – Expenses. If income is greater than expenses profit will be a positive number. If expenses are more than income it is a loss. However, accountants are very optimistic people. They do not use the word, loss. They call it negative profit. Let us look at […]


Average reading time – 6 minutes Outcome – You will never get confused with the terms Debit & Credit after reading this article. Wanna bet? The two most widely used terms in finance and accounting are also the most misunderstood. Whenever I ask participants in my seminar to define Debit and Credit everyone will come […]

Understanding Profit & Loss Statement

In business, you have two basic financial statements, 1.      The Balance Sheet, and; 2.      The Profit & Loss Statement. Profit & Loss statement is like a thermometer – it tells the temperature of a business. On the other hand, a Balance Sheet will tell us why a business has got that temperature. (Assuming we know how to […]

Understanding Balance Sheets

In my last article, I explained the difference between Finance & Accounting by comparing business with game of football. Let me continue the same to explain Balance Sheets. (You can read my previous article later by clicking this link) Imagine a veteran football player called David. David retires from professional football and wants to start a […]

The difference between Finance & Accounting

I my last article I ended with a question – is there a difference between Finance & Accounting? I recently conducted a seminar at Holmesglen University, Melbourne. In that seminar, I asked the same question to a dozen business owners. Most of them answered ‘yes.’ Even so, they were not able to explain why in simple words. […]

Who is the Finance Person in your Business?

(Downloadable spreadsheet available for download on SMART Forums) The one question you must ask yourself as a businessperson – are you a finance person? Before you read this article, I need you to answer one question. Who is the finance person in your business? Is it your accountant? Your admin person? Or perhaps it’s your salespeople, […]

Four Critical Things Every Business Owner Should Know

There are only two rules in business: Rule #1: Always earn more than you spend. Rule #2: Never forget rule #1. To know if a business is earning more than its spending at any given point in time, stakeholders should know the pulse (numbers) of the business and numbers are on financial statements. Unfortunately, many […]