Monday, May 13, 2013

What Warren Buffett looks for in a person

Students often go to visit Warren Buffett. And when they do, he often plays a little game on them.

He asks each student to pick a classmate. Not just any classmate, but the classmate you would choose if you could have 10% of their earnings for the rest of their life. Which classmate would you pick and why?

“Are you going to pick the one with the highest IQ?” asks Buffett. “Are you going to pick the guy who can throw a football the farthest? The one with the highest grades? What qualities will cause you to pick them?”

Then he changes things up again. Who would you think least likely to succeed? Why?

He asks the students to take out a sheet of paper and list the positive attributes on the left and the negative ones on the right.

Inevitably, the most useful qualities have nothing to do with IQ, grades, or family connections. People pick based on generosity, kindness, and integrity.
--Shane Parrish, Farnam Street, on an interesting exercise. I think my list would include IQ and an insatiable desire to be an investment banker. HT: Franklin Shaddy