In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, I would like to dedicate a post on why I am such a fangirl of Warren Buffett.
Don’t worry, my husband is aware of my infatuation with Warren Buffett and in fact, when we first met we talked about Warren Buffett. My husband is actually more of a fan of Warren Buffett than I am and has read all of the Berkshire Hathaway Annual Reports. Get this– For fun, I actually read aloud quotes that are either stated by Warren Buffett or Charlie Munger and he guesses (correctly) who actually said it. So nerdy right?
We solidified our love for Warren Buffett by going to the Berkshire Hathaway Annual General Meeting in 2016. We had an absolute blast attending the meeting and also following him around like the true Warren Buffett stalkers that we are. We ate the steak that he likes to order at Gotham’s Steakhouse, we checked out his office on Farnam street, we checked out his house on Farnam street a few blocks down, and we watched him play ping pong with Bill Gates (this was very surreal since you think “these are two of the richest people in the world playing ping pong in this mall!”).
warren buffett is the Greatest investor of all time
There is no doubt about it. Warren Buffett is the greatest investor of all time. He bought his first stock at age 11 and has never looked back. He created the Buffett Partnership at age 25 and this transitioned into what we know as the multibillion-dollar holding company that Berkshire Hathaway is today.
Not only is Warren Buffett a great investor, he exhibits other traits that make him an amazing human being. In addition to him being the greatest investor of all time, here are four other reasons why I am a big fan of Warren Buffett.
warren buffett is modest, humble, and frugal
As many of you probably already know, he bought his house in the 1950’s for $31,500 and he still lives in it today. It is a corner lot (I know because I went to see his house and also saw him pulling into his driveway too!) and the actual house looks bigger than I thought it would but it is by no means a mansion. He didn’t feel the need to Keep Up with the Joneses or buy a bigger mansion as his net worth grew to be one of the top three richest people in the world.
Even though he owns $16.7 billion (in 2017) or 9.4% percent stake in Coca-Cola, his wife Astrid still stocks up his supply when Coca-Cola is on sale.
In the “Becoming Warren Buffett” documentary, the McDonald’s breakfast sandwich that he buys is dependent on how the market is performing that day. If the market is having a down day he feels like he doesn’t deserve the more expensive McDonald’s breakfast sandwich and will get the cheaper option. He is a multi-billionaire and he doesn’t feel like he deserves to get the more expensive breakfast sandwich option which is ‘more expensive’ by less than a dollar in absolute figures!
warren buffett learns every day
In addition to being humble, frugal, and modest, Warren Buffett spends most of his day reading and learning. He is open to learning, open to new ideas, and open to change. He takes the ego out of investing (which is something we all should strive for). For example, Warren Buffett has notoriously been known for saying that the airline business is a bad business to invest in and that the computer and technology sector is a bad business to invest in. However, recently in 2017 Berkshire Hathaway increased sizeable stakes in Southwest Airlines, American Airlines, and Apple.
Early in his career, he also learned that he wasn’t very good with people nor public speaking and sought to change that by taking a Dale Carnegie course on “How to Win Friends and Influence People”.
Warren Buffett aims to go to bed a little wiser than when he started the day by spending 80% of his day just thinking and reading. Reading facts and then thinking about them and formulating an opinion (his own) through critical thinking. His partner Charlie Munger says:
“Develop into a lifelong self-learner through voracious reading; cultivate curiosity and strive to become a little wiser every day.”
— Charlie Munger
warren buffett does his own thing, honey badger don’t care
Warren Buffett doesn’t really give a hoot what other people think and he doesn’t care to eat vegetables and never has.
Just like the honey badger, he doesn’t care and he’ll do his own thing.
Even if this involves “eating like a 6-year-old” and drinking 5 cans of Cherry Coke flavoured Coca-Cola a day and eating a McDonald’s breakfast sandwich every day. He doesn’t live life fearful of his mortality or fearful of ruining his health. You won’t see him drinking organic coconut water to replenish the collagen on his face (disclaimer: I’m not sure if that is a claim of coconut water, I just made that up) or to prevent cancer. No one can nag him to do anything that he doesn’t want to do, even his wife! Even if he is traveling to a different location, for example in Japan, he would rather just have his American style food of steak and potatoes instead of sushi (from what I recall when reading The Snowball biography).
He has made it clear that he doesn’t care for nepotism and has declared he will donate most of his wealth to charity. He will leave enough for his children obviously but he’s not going to give them the lion’s share of his wealth so that they have nothing to strive for. His children are happy with his decision too and aren’t spoiled, demanding to gain billions of dollars when he passes.
warren buffett is an introvert (like me)
Warren Buffett is a famous introvert. He spends most of his day with the door closed in his Berkshire Hathaway office on Farnam Street reading and thinking.
His father taught him an important lesson of keeping an inner scorecard rather than an outer scorecard. Flashiness or “outer scorecard measures” such as a nice house, nice car, nice clothing… are not his thing.
He hates meetings (so do I, I really find them a waste of time) and according to Truity, leads by focusing on a decentralized workplace. He’s a doer and not a talker.
There are a plethora of other reasons why I’m a huge fan of Warren Buffett, and to be honest, a blog post won’t cut it, it will probably end up being a novel.
If you want to learn more about Warren Buffett the documentary “Becoming Warren Buffett” is so great to watch especially since he agreed to be interviewed in it. You can watch it for free on this Youtube link here. Also, the book The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life by Alice Shroeder is a great read, and even though it is almost 1000 pages long, the book goes by quickly and his life is fascinating.
Readers, are you a fan of Warren Buffett too? Are there any other books or films that I should read about Warren Buffett?
GYM is a 30 something millennial interested in achieving financial freedom through disciplined saving, dividend and ETF investing, and living a minimalist lifestyle. Before you go, check out my recommendations page of financial tools I use to save and invest money. Don’t forget to subscribe for blog updates, a free dividend yield spreadsheet, and the free Young Money Bootcamp eCourse.