Richard Martin's Monday Morning Brilliant Manoeuvres -- 6 May 2013
May 6, 2013
Never assume youre completely right about your enemy (or competitors)
nor completely wrong either.
Warren Buffett, CEO and principal shareowner of Berkshire Hathaway just presided over his companys annual meeting of shareholders. According to this mornings Wall Street Journal, Buffett took the outstanding step of inviting a well-known investor whos selling Berkshires stock short. Buffetts point from this, apart from the obvious newsworthiness, is that he likes to seek contrary opinions. His main message according to the WSJ? Doubt yourself. Of course he doesnt mean to lack faith in ones means. Rather, he says to question your own certainties. This is a highly developed approach to management and leadership. Whether in war or business, the biggest mistakes come from irrational belief in the correctness of ones progostications. It takes a big person to consider contrary opinions and views. Buffetts success as an investor shows that this is a very prudent and wise thing to do.
What competitive threats are you facing? What capabilities do your competitors have? Can you estimate their intentions? Do you have advisors who systematically question your assumptions and provide a contrary point of view?
Richard Martin is a consultant, speaker, and executive coach. He brings his military and business leadership and management experience to bear for executives and organizations seeking to exploit change, maximize opportunity, and minimize risk.
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