Warren Buffett and Bill Gates aren’t just pals when it comes to playing bridge and being in the richest guys on earth club. They are genuinely friends who learn from one another. Gates has long considered Buffett not just a friend but a mentor — and Buffett’s sage advice is hardly limited to the pearls of wisdom he drops about value investing. (Ask Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.)
Buffett’s theories about what’s important in life (beyond business) track closely with his investment philosophy. Quality and value are paramount, but how do you measure these in life? When there are no spreadsheets to consult? Buffett, as usual, has a concise formula, not unlike those he uses to assess a business he’s interested in.
Bill Gates quotes Buffett’s quality of life metric in his 2018 year-end letter, saying Buffett’s idea is “about as good a metric as you will find” to assess the quality of life. Here’s the question you have to answer, according to Buffett and Gates, to understand if your quality of life is good:
“Do the people you care about love you back?” That’s Warren Buffett’s way of measuring quality of life.
Gates says that he considers quality of life a far more important issue than he did when he was a younger man. Gates believes the “world is slowly going through a similar transition to a broader understanding of well-being.”