4 Lessons Small Businesses Can Learn from Warren Buffett

Posted by on May 13, 2013 in Business Management, Business Start Up Advice [ 0 Comments ]

Warren BuffettAt one time, Warren Buffett was the wealthiest human being on Earth.  If he hadn’t shared his wealth, he’d likely still hold, or vie for that spot in present day.

He deserves to be viewed as a guru when it comes to investments – and the secrets to his success can be applied to the way small business owners run their businesses.


Related: Search our small business loan providers to find help starting your business

Talk to People

Buffet grew up as a shy person, even into his adulthood.  He realized this personality trait and knew it would hinder him when it came to success in his business endeavors.  To help with this problem, he enrolled in a public speaking course.  From the course, he gained enough confidence that he taught a night class at the University of Nebraska-Omaha.

  • As you run a business and aim for high levels of success, you must be able to sell your products, services and yourself.  Attend pitching events to polish your technique.  To succeed at sales, you must have the ability to convince people and always remember that honesty in business pays off.

Related: 7 Habits of Highly Productive Startup Owners

The Market Doesn’t Rule You; You Rule the Market (And Learn From It!)

When it comes to investment principles, Buffett realized its simplicity.  Don’t view the market as a guide, but instead think of the market as someone who is happy to sell you a product.  Sometimes the person will sell products at a higher price, sometimes at a lower price.  This principle led Buffett to make an investment in Goldman Sachs during the height of the banking crisis that affected the world.

  • As you build your own business, don’t always follow what is doing well at that moment, or offer exactly what people want today.  Just like the stock market, people want change.  Build a business that will defy the test of time and isn’t too trendy.

Don’t Accrue Loads of Debt

If you have money, you don’t have to hand it out to people.  Buffet’s daughter once approached him for a loan when she wanted to make changes to her kitchen, and he refused.  Yes, one of the richest men in the world didn’t give his own daughter money on loan.  This is a key to his extreme wealth and success: he’s never had debt.

  • This isn’t always practical or feasible when it comes to running a business.  We all know that loans can help jump-start a business.  If possible, look into bootstrapping.  Growth may be slower, however the moment you begin to earn a profit, it’s yours.

Related: Debt Management for the Small Business

Keep on Moving

As a child, Buffett had a newspaper route, sold used golf balls and eagerly took on any job he could to make the almighty dollar.  As a young teenager, he was already making more money than many of his teachers and was a millionaire before he turned thirty years old.

  • Alongside the previous point, we learn from Buffett that you don’t have to stop the things you currently do to make money when you start and run a business.

Business guru Warren Buffett lives a life of success and wealth that many of us aspire to replicate.  The philanthropist and investor is a man who can teach us all ways to run a business and create a successful empire.

What lessons have you learned from running your business?

(Image Source: Official White House Photo)

Bio: Megan Totka is the Chief Editor for ChamberofCommerce.com. She specializes on the topic of small business tips and resources. ChamberofCommerce.com helps small businesses grow their business on the web and facilitates connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide.

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