When you think of the wealthy elite of the world, what immediately sprigs to mind? A highly disciplined individual who is always moving from meeting to meeting or a relaxed fellow whose previous endeavors are making tons of money for him? Whatever you think a billionaire’s lifestyle is like, one thing rings true for them all; they have a philosophy behind their way of doing things. For them, it is a method to the madness that works successfully more often than it fails.
One such individual is George Soros. The billionaire is among the 30 richest people in the world and has a net worth of 25.2 billion dollars. Soros is a Hungarian-born investor who survived the Nazi regime to become a business magnate, author and philanthropist.
One can’t help but wonder what inspiration or work ethic it requires to evolve from surviving one of the worlds most notable genocides to waiting on tables to getting through college and amassing a fortune worth billions. One thing Soros is famous for is thinking differently. The famous trade off with the Bank of England that made Soros a billion dollars was thanks to his ability to read between the lines and see a downturn miles before it hit the markets. Applying Soros’ philosophy in your business involves a lot of courage and trust in your gut, but more importantly, understanding what could go wrong. Here is what it takes to understand the billionaire’s way of thinking and turning it into your own philosophy;
Watch trends and find loopholes
This is one of the main ideals that worked for George Soros in his years as an investor. Betting against the pound sterling seems like a mad man’s idea, but Soros did it and this is all it took. At the time, the pound sterling was struggling to keep up with other European currencies so that it raised in value if another currency’s value went up. Soros observed the trend and thought; it couldn’t possibly be sustainable in the long run. He positioned himself accordingly just before the Bank of England collapsed and devalued the currency.
Asked about the fortunes he made betting against currencies and having things go his way, Soros exclaimed at how the investors’ outlook mattered in pricing assets. In his opinion, business people expect markets to go in a rational way, which more often than not isn’t the case.
Securities analysts and hedge fund managers can relate to the idea of finding a loophole that is bound to make you lots of money when the truth state of things emerges. Soros encourages a different outlook on financial markets. More often than not, slight changes owing to shifting perceptions lead to big wins if you can catch the misconceptions underlying the trend before everyone else.
Your mindset must be fluid
This is one of the ideas that have helped Soros build an empire as large as he has. The differences between business fundamentals and the attitude of the market are well-known to most people. However, sticking to one or the other too much dooms brilliant plans. While most investment advice encourages focusing on market sentiments and downplaying market fundamentals, Soros thinks otherwise. One observation he made through his years as a successful business person is that market sentiment can sometimes change the fundamentals. This observation comes from the billionaire’s ability to reposition with the times and move where opportunity lies. Soros does not advocate for a single way of doing things but rather finding out what new changes arise from different markets and finding ways to make them work for you.
Manage risks to make more profit
With his record of making quick billions in financial bubbles, Mr. Soros may seem like the last person to talk about financial risk. On the contrary, his belief system involves mitigating risk and reducing it to a bare minimum. One time while talking about investment and how to go about it, Soros said that an investor who finds investing fun is probably doing it wrong. To him, investing was boring and you didn’t get to make the rash decisions Hollywood has proliferated.
Investment takes a lot of research into the market you are interested in. The complexity of the financial markets that exist now requires some in depth analysis otherwise it might all go downhill and fast.
Focus on the end result
Mr. Soros has never been known to fuss about meddling with financial bubbles. Despite their volatile nature, Soros once said that instead of calming them, he buys in and fuels the mania. Part of the reason he is able to maintain such a mindset is because lack of trust in the prevailing situation. As a firm believer in the philosophy of critical rationalism, Soros way of doing things involves investigating everything to do with the current state of affairs. In so doing, new opportunities present themselves and advantages emerge where there were none.
With such a mindset, Soros was able to run one of the most successful hedge funds in recent history. Finding faults with the status quo, the business magnate would abandon one prospect and put time and effort into another without any sort of bias; just the presence of mind to know good and bad assets.
In many ways, the billionaire George Soros embodies all the qualities that can take you to the top. For him, it is a mix of expert knowledge of the markets and the assurance that someone somewhere will make a big mess that he, Soros, will benefit from. The biggest take away from the business magnate is that good information needs to be combined with the right amount of skepticism to work just right. His unrestrained approach to business and the ability to go against popular opinion have molded him into the ruthless business mogul he is today.
Most of the ideas that Soros has fronted while in business are anything but conventional. However, they have been proven to work like charm. To think like George Soros, one would need to adapt a decisive spirit and a knack for identifying what’s missing from the core of a popular ideal.