Warren Buffett is the Chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway
We included Warren Buffet on our Great Speakers List because of his excellent sense of humor, casual style, and mild-mannered confidence. While being the sixth wealthiest person in the world and often referred to as a "sage" or "oracle", Buffett appears open, friendly, matter-of-fact, and eager to share.
After working as an investment salesman and securities analyst, Buffet founded Buffet Partnership in 1956 and eventually became chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway Inc in 1970. Deeply passionate, philosophical, and persuasive, he created many partnerships over the years; he was a millionaire by 1962 and a billionaire by 1990. He has interests and shares in companies like GE, ABC, Wesco, Washington Post, Coca-Cola, and AIG. He has been deeply involved with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation as a philanthropist.
We reviewed Buffet alongside his partner Charlie Munger at the Berkshire Hathaway Annual Meeting in 2018. Charlie recently passed, and it's a good reminder of how special that friendship was. May this be a tribute to Charlie, too.
Buffet's greatest communication skills:
Strong Start - Buffet's opening of "I'm Warren; this is Charlie. Charlies does most things better than I do" creates a sense of ease and camaraderie with the audience
Humor - Unafraid of a large pause and enjoys laughter as he opens a box of chocolates.
Lightness- Tone is mild-mannered and easy going
Love of subject - Buffet's interest in these topics is clearly high as he rattles off stories and stats, with one simple slide up.
Self-Facilitation - While some may assume a man of his age would prefer a facilitator, Buffet introduces exactly how the session will go, including format, guests, and what can and cannot be asked.
What Buffet could do to improve his communication skills:
Fillers - Buffet tends to fill the silence with "um"
Rhythm - Buffet's pace varies greatly with pauses in unexpected places, making his speech a bit choppy and hard to follow.
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