How to Be Successful At Investing

I’ve shared before in one of my earlier articles that Dato’ Cheah Cheng Hye, the Chairman of investing firm Value Partners Group Ltd, is one of the investors whom I admire the most.

One of the interesting things about Dato’ Cheah that I did not mention in my earlier article about him is that his official signature is the word “Learn”.

His signature points to a simple truth about finding success in investing.

If you feel that there is ever a point where you’ve “learnt enough” as an investor, I’m sorry to tell you that such a point does not exist.

Benjamin Graham once said that “Investing is most intelligent when it is most business-like.” As an investor, the most prudent way for us is to view each share is to look at it as a business. And because the world of business is ever-changing, there is no end to the things we can learn about.

The key for one to continue growing as an investor is to be open to new ideas. Being humble and open to learning new things can dramatically increase our investing skills over time. It is not too different from how we should approach life itself.

Imagine if you have an arrogant friend who thinks he knows everything. What do you think would be the most likely outcome for him over the next ten years? By then, you might have grown and moved forward in life while he’s still running on a treadmill because of his inability and unwillingness to learn new skills.

If Warren Buffett hadn’t been open to changes regarding his investment style, he would still be a very successful investor, but he would very likely not have accumulated the level of wealth he has today.

Early on in Buffett’s career, he was largely interested in only sub-par companies that were trading at dirt-cheap valuations. He was very successful at that. But as he grew older, he began to spend more and more of his investing efforts with great companies that have the ability to do well and grow for years and decades into the future. That transition in investment style has made him into a much better investor.

But yet, that big and successful switch did not satisfy Buffett’s quest to learn more about the world. Even today, the 84 year old Buffett still spends more than five hours a day reading.

Foolish Summary

As you learn more about different successful investors, you’d realize that the act of consistent learning is a common key to their success.

That is something we all can learn from.

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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. Motley Fool Singapore writer Stanley Lim doesn’t own shares in any companies mentioned.