Why Does Warren Buffett Still Work? Here’s Why

by Jason Unger

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He’s very-often the richest man in the world (depending on the day of the week). He’s got nothing left to prove. He’s already said he’s giving away almost all of his money.

So why does Warren Buffett still work?

It’s a great question, and one that I got asked over on Quora

Why are Warren Buffett (and other already rich people) still interested in making so much money?

Here’s why.

Why does Warren Buffett continue to work?

Let’s ask a few different questions.

  • Why does Tom Brady, who already has 5 Super Bowl rings, want to play football into his mid-forties?
  • Why did Hillary Clinton, who has served as First Lady, Senator, and Secretary of State, run for president?
  • Why did Steve Jobs, who revolutionized technology with the Mac, iPod, iPhone and iPad continue to work at Apple until his death?

The answer to all of these is incredibly simple.

Each of these people thinks they have something of value to give through their work.

It’s clear that Buffett, Brady etc. love what they do, and they are the best at it.

Why wouldn’t they continue working until they no longer can?

Buffett built Berkshire Hathaway into the business goliath that it is, and he’s still pretty damn good at running it.

If you’ve read anything about Buffett and his philosophy, it’s clear it’s not really about the money. Like you’ve pointed out, he’s got plenty of it.

Here’s the thing about Buffett’s money.

He’s not giving it to his kids. He’s giving 99% of it away, as part of the Giving Pledge.

He knows that his money can have a huge impact on the world after he’s gone.

Let’s recap.

  • He’s the best at what he does.
  • He loves working.
  • He’s giving away 99% of his money.

Why wouldn’t he continue working?

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Charles May 27, 2019 at 12:31 am

I think making money is addictive. If he just wanted to run a business he wouldn’t be doing back door deals with politicians. He’s hooked like a gambler, except Warren wins almost every time.

Edward Mittelstaedt September 14, 2019 at 9:59 pm

Nonsense. Warren Buffett works because he likes his job and would be bored not working. And as I have told my kids repeatedly there is no big secret to making money – all you need to do is work for other people not work for you. See a need, fill a need. Most people want to be paid doing what THEY love not what OTHER people need done. They go to school and choose a major, completely ignoring what the market wants. They get out with their newly minted degree and find no jobs because the market doesn’t need any more art historians. So they go back to school for another 4 years to get a doctorate because they refuse to believe the world is indifferent to what THEY want.
Meanwhile plumbers are charging $150 an hour and in many areas of the country it’s dam near impossible to get one.
Warren Buffet is thought to be an investor but the reality is he is a service provider just like everyone else. He provides money. What he does is borrow money at a low cost and provide it to people at a high cost. The low cost is what he pays investors who put money into his ventures and the high cost is paid by stock owners who are cashing out. He saw a need a lifetime ago and he filled it.

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