Like I said in the past, I can’t recommend William Thorndike’s The Outsiders enough (More on the Outsiders). It’s one of the best book to have come out on investing in the last couple years. It’s about 8 CEOs that that had extraordinary returns over the long run. Except for Buffett, most people probably never heard of the 7 other CEO mentioned in the book. Here’s a potential blueprint for their success:
From the Preface:
They seemed to operate in a parallel universe, one defined by devotion to a shared set of principles, a worldview, which gave them citizenship in a tiny intellectual village. Call it Singletonville, a very select group of men and women who understood, among other things, that:
- Capital allocation is a CEO’s most important job.
- What counts in the long run is the increase in per share value, not overall growth or size.
- Cash flow, not reported earnings, is what determines longterm value.
- Decentralized organizations release entrepreneurial energy and keep both costs and “rancor” down.
- Independent thinking is essential to long-term success, and interactions with outside advisers (Wall Street, the press, etc.) can be distracting and time-consuming.
- Sometimes the best investment opportunity is your own stock.
- With acquisitions, patience is a virtue . . . as is occasional boldness.
Pages: Preface xvi, xvii