Warren Buffett, famously hailed as the oracle of Omaha, has one advice for students -- discard intellectual arrogance and seek reverse mentors.
Addressing the graduate class of students at the University of Florida, INC reported that Buffett has urged students to be open to learning and advising them to break this one bad habit that may not become apparent until it is too late.
“There is one bad habit to pay close attention to that could become self-destructive in the long run: intellectual arrogance. The need to show people that you think you're smarter than they are is one way to derail you from building solid bonds,” he said.
To counter the effects of intellectual arrogance, the smartest people are open to the intellectual wisdom of others. “Be smart without being arrogant…seek knowledge from those who may know more than you do,” he added.
He also told students to seek out a “reverse mentor” -- a departure from the advice to look up to older and more experienced individuals. He advised taking advantage of the social era to learn from “younger but tech-savvy individuals who hold expertise in unfamiliar terrain.”
Buffett told students that remoulding their outlook would be easier now that later in life – “because most behaviours are habitual,” further quoting English philosopher Bertrand Russell: "The chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken."He also extended the thought to bosses, asking them to seek and listen to younger mentors for fresh perspectives on challenging situations. “They will love and respect you. This counter-intuitive act of influence will win many over to your tribe. Give it a try and see where it goes,” he stated.