Not enough people have seen this awesome documentary about Warren Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway and the world’s richest man with a 2011 net worth estimated at $50 billion. In fact, next to someone like Bill Gates, not all that many really who Warren Buffett is…
Bill and Warren are in fact good pals (some even say they have a father-son relationship, Buffett being 25 years older than Gates), both consistently at the top of the “world’s richest” lists, and they are both among the better type of super-rich who choose to do great things to help the world with their fortunes.
Buffett, who last week said that America needs to stop playing “Russian Roulette” with the economy, is known for his down-to-earth, absurdly “regular-guy” standards of living considering his vast fortunes, and for his philanthropy and generosity. Admitting that he’s better at making money than knowing how to spend it on good causes, he’s chosen to give away the vast majority of it to someone who has a pretty good idea how (Bill and Melinda Gates).
Buffett is a fascinating character, as you’ll see in the documentary video below, which looks at the different skills and methods he’s employed to get to where he is today. The program, first aired by BBC in 2009 when Warren was estimated at $60bn, ultimately suggests two ways you can Be Like Buffett:
1. Invest Like Him
His business partner Charlie Munger reveals the rules by which he and Warren invest:
1) We have to be investing in businesses that we’re capable of understanding
2) Businesses with intrinsic qualities that give a durable competitive advantage
3) There has to be a management team in place with integrity and talent
4) It has to be at a price that makes sense.
That’s it. Simple enough, but then again apparently not, for a lot of “speculative” investors…
2. Live Like Him
Second, the show’s presenter Evan Davis (of Dragons’ Den UK fame) ends on a note suggesting that while most of us will never be as rich as Buffett, we can at least choose to live a life as rich as his.
So humble is Buffett’s day-to-day life that on the surface, living a life like his is pretty easy - in fact a lot of us probably live in a bigger house or drive way better cars. But the spirit of the documentary is in examining how we might learn from Buffett’s ‘Personal Value System’ and the other moral and ethical principles he lives by, for a different kind of richness - some might say, the most important kind.
It’s well worth watching:
If you want a little further insight and have a couple of million dollars going spare, Buffett holds an annual auction for charity to have lunch with him.