|(photo from NY Post)|
And it all stems from his empathy, i.e., the ability to put himself in another's shoes. The latter was on display when he said why he doesn't talk about politics in public, at least not any more. [bold added]
the CEO explained why he’s not speaking on politically charged topics — because doing so could affect Berkshire and the companies it invests in.Michael Jordan expressed a similar thought 32 years ago. When he was urged to support the Democratic candidate in a Senate race, he said, "Republicans buy sneakers, too."
“I don't want to say anything that will get attributed basically to Berkshire, and have somebody else bear the consequences of what I talk about,” Buffett said.
“Why in the world do I want to hurt the people in that other room that do all kinds of things for Berkshire? Why do I want to hurt you? Because I say something that 20% of the country is going to instantly disagree with. And sometimes they will be so upset about us that they will try and…have campaigns against our companies.”
My mother asked to do a PSA for Harvey Gantt, and I said, 'Look, Mom, I'm not speaking out of pocket about someone that I don't know. But I will send a contribution to support him.' Which is what I did.They refrained from politics for different reasons: Michael Jordan didn't want to hurt his own brand, and Warren Buffett didn't want to hurt the people in Berkshire's businesses. Two other similarities: both men have shown enormous discipline throughout their lives, and neither craves the adulation of people who clap because they like their politics.
"I do commend Muhammad Ali for standing up for what he believed in. But I never thought of myself as an activist. I thought of myself as a basketball player.
"I wasn't a politician when I was playing my sport. I was focused on my craft. Was that selfish? Probably. But that was my energy. That's where my energy was."