Global business and finance icons have many extraordinary attributes, but it’s rare to find many whose public comments and words resonate throughout the world and sometimes end up leading to vast rethinking of established business norms and practices.
But Warren Buffet, the legendary chief executive officer of Berkshire Hathaway, the U.S.-based multinational business conglomerate that took in $247.5 billion in revenue last year (making it the eighth largest public in company) has carved out a reputation for his ability to provide meaningful and yet shockingly simple statements that assume their place as truisms in global business.
It’s one of the reasons that gave rise to Buffet’s nickname, the “Oracle of Omaha.”
Buffet turned 90 on August 30, and Inc. used the occasion to highlight four of the nonagenarian’s simple but deeply meaningful statements:
“Pick your friends wisely.”
Buffet originally offered this guidance in a college speech, emphasizing that “you will move in the direction of the people that you associate with. So it’s important to associate with people better than yourself.”
“Go to bed a little smarter every day.”
The Oracle of Omaha reportedly spends roughly 80 percent of his day reading, and there’s a reason.
He says that a key to success is continual learning, and reading is the method through which that goal is most easily achieved.
“Improve your communication skills”
Buffet believes that the process of continual improvement is not just vital but that continual improvement of communication skills has the ability to improve one’s worth by 50 percent.
One should seek to continually improve written and verbal skills, Buffet has said.
Being drawn into unproductive things is tempting and perhaps the easiest way to undermine one’s focus on the hugely important things, Buffet says.
Staying focused on saying “yes” to the select things that matter most while simultaneously saying “no” to the many distractive undertakings that we encounter daily keeps one focused on key goals and priorities.