Today, Kevin O'Leary is known as a personal finance expert: He's an investor on ABC's "Shark Tank," the chairman of ETF company O'Shares Investments, and the author of three best-selling books about money.
But even O'Leary has made a few poor money decisions while discovering the finance lessons that later built his career. O'Leary sat down with CNBC Make It to discuss his most embarrassing mistakes, what he learned from them and other money confessions.
CNBC Make It: What is your first money memory?
Kevin O'Leary: I was born dreaming about money. I came out of the womb thinking "cash flow"; that's exactly what happened. It's been on my mind since my first breath. And that's the way it should be for everybody: Money is your friend from the day you are born to the day you die.
Who taught you about money?
You know who taught me about money? My mother. She was always thinking about it too, she was always wanting to make sure she had enough for herself and she wanted financial independence, and from the age of 5 years old she talked to me about that. "Never spend the principal, only the interest," [she said].
What was your first job?
My first job was at an ice cream parlor. I worked there for a day and I got fired, and that's when I learned that there are two types of people: There are people that own the store, and people that scrape the s--- off the floor. You have to decide which one you are.