When Warren Buffett considers hiring an executive for his company Berkshire Hathaway, he assesses their intelligence and drive.
But more importantly, he said at a talk at the Ivey Business School in late February, he judges that person’s character.
“I know an individual who is definitely going to outperform the S&P, but he’s the last guy on earth I’d want my daughter to marry,” he joked, saying that while that man may be a “winner” by all accounts, he isn’t the right fit for Berkshire.
When hiring, it’s best to prioritise whether you like someone above all else, Buffett said.
“So first and foremost, you have to feel good around them, you must enjoy their company, like a friend or a family member,” he said. “If you feel good around them, it means they have characteristics you admire and are moving in the direction you want to associate with. These people represent who you’d like to be, and you may perceive them even as better than yourself.”
He’s used the same philosophy for the CEOs of companies he’s acquired. Every leader he considers incorporating into his business must meet his standards of intellect, energy, and integrity, CBS MoneyWatch reports.
“You can admire their behaviour or intellect, but always judge them as a human being,” Buffett said at Ivey.
When employees’ values are aligned with those of their company, they will achieve their full potential.
“These people do 10 things for every one thing you ask for,” Buffett said. “They go above and beyond what you expect of them.”
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