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Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Fortune interview Gates and Buffet
GATES: ...When I first met Warren, we were talking about getting together and doing something again, and he pulled out his calendar and the pages were so blank. I said, 'Wow, you've managed to avoid getting tied in to a lot of kind of meaningless activities.' And Warren said, 'Yeah, you have to be good at saying no and picking the things that really make a difference.' And that's one of many things I've learned from Warren, and so I can blame it on him whenever I'm turning things down.

BUFFETT: ...I got an awful lot of good advice from my dad, and he didn't lay it on me, meaning I picked it up from him but there was never any of this 'do this, do that' type of thing at all. But he really taught me that what's on your inner scorecard is more important than your outer scorecard. Some people get in a position where they're worrying all the time about what the world is going to think of this or that, instead of considering what they themselves think about it. The people who ascribe too much to the outer scorecard sometimes find that it's a little hollow when they get all through.

BUFFETT: ...Well, usually I look in the mirror, to be perfectly honest. If I need to get a cabinet around to make decisions or anything like that, I probably shouldn't be running the place. I don't think you will ever get brilliant investment decisions out of a large committee.

These guys (Gates particularly) get interviewed a lot, but this one is definitely worth reading.

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