Bollywed’s Kuki and Chandan Singh on making it in Canada—and on TV

What was your first job? 

Photo courtesy of CBC

Kuki: Working at my father’s store. I wasn’t allowed to work anywhere else. I took my first paycheque to the temple and donated it. I also did service and fed all the homeless in the area. I have very many good memories of times like these. 

Chandan: Like my father, I wasn’t allowed to work outside of the family business, despite how much I begged to get a “real” job. But my father insisted I work at our store, behind the counter, learning the family business. When I moved away to university, I picked up my first job within the first week at Mad Scientist, teaching the basics of science to children in grade 1 and 2 in a fun way. I enjoyed it a ton, but I was let go within a few weeks for being late. “CST,” my wife would say—Chandan Standard Time. Then I got offered a job as a sous-chef at the local cafeteria across campus, and I developed my passion for cooking. I spent so much time and money eating there, the head chef asked me if I wanted the job. I worked there for as long as I could, before deciding I needed to focus on my grades. I took my first paycheque and gave it to my parents as a sign of respect. And my dad made me do the same thing he did, in the end, so I donated it.

What was the biggest money lesson you learned as an adult? 

Kuki: You have to respect money each and every day. If you are honest and hard-working, you will never have problems with money. Without honesty, you will never be successful. Trust me. I have seen it my whole life. 

Chandan: “Money comes easily and frequently” is a mantra I learned a few years ago. The day I stopped chasing money and stopped worrying about having enough of it, my life changed. 

I used to get so upset about losing money or angry about losing a deal. When I first got scammed for those dozen Xbox consoles, I wrote some nasty emails and saw a side of myself I didn’t like. I am sure it went on deaf ears, but I became conscious of what losing money can feel like. I put a pin on the feeling and explored it as I got older. 

What’s the best money advice you’ve ever received?

Chandan: I was told that my parents dug for a diamond for 20 years, and that it’s my job to cut and polish the diamond to take it to the next level. If I could do that successfully, I would have a head start and I wouldn’t have to worry about money. I am still working on that. 

What’s the worst money advice you’ve ever received?

Kuki: To spend. Whenever your friends tell you to spend money here or there, use your own brain. Think to yourself, “Is it right for me and my family?” 

Would you rather receive a large sum of money all at once or a smaller amount of money regularly for life? 

Kuki: Never kill your golden goose. If you can have consistent money for the rest of your life, never take away that source. 


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