Smartest people on the planet taught me about Investing & Finance

Smartest people on the planet taught me about Investing & Finance

An hour a day is all it takes to build your financial knowledge. There are many different ways to spend an hour learning each day, including reading books or articles, watching educational videos or lectures, participating in online courses or workshops, or attending in-person seminars or classes. It can also be helpful to set specific goals or objectives for your learning, such as learning a new skill or gaining a deeper understanding of a particular topic. 


Setting aside time each day to learn can be a valuable investment in your personal and professional growth.  That is precisely what I have been doing for the last several years.


I learn from people who are way more intelligent than I am.  Who are these people?  Here are some of those great personalities. This list is incomplete, and the people listed here are not organized in any particular order or ranking.  I keep notes of my learning and plan to publish them here in the next couple of months.


Warren Buffet: Buffet is the CEO of Berkshire Hathaway and is widely considered one of the most successful investors of all time. He is known for his value investing approach and his long-term investment horizon. Some of his significant accomplishments include turning Berkshire Hathaway into a highly successful conglomerate and delivering solid returns to shareholders over a long period. Some books he has written or contributed to include "The Essays of Warren Buffet" and "The Intelligent Investor."


Peter Lynch: Lynch is a former portfolio manager of the Fidelity Magellan Fund and is known for his successful investment strategies and his belief in the potential of individual investors to outperform the market. His significant accomplishments include delivering solid returns to investors during his tenure at the Fidelity Magellan Fund and his books "One Up on Wall Street" and "Beating the Street," widely read by investors.


Benjamin Graham: Graham is considered the "father of value investing" and is known for his influential book, "The Intelligent Investor." He is credited with developing many of the fundamental principles of value investing, including the concept of "Mr. Market." Some of his major accomplishments include his influential writings on investing and his successful investment career.


Ray Dalio: Dalio is the founder and co-chief investment officer of Bridgewater Associates, one of the largest and most successful hedge funds in the world. He is known for his principles-based approach to investing and his belief in the importance of diversification. Some of his major accomplishments include the success of Bridgewater Associates and his book "Principles," which has been widely read by investors and business professionals.


Bill Ackman: Ackman is the founder and CEO of Pershing Square Capital Management, a hedge fund known for its activist investing approach. He is known for his successful investments and his willingness to take on large, high-profile bets. Some of his major accomplishments include the success of Pershing Square Capital Management and his involvement in high-profile activist campaigns.


Jamie Dimon: Dimon is the CEO of JPMorgan Chase, one of the largest and most successful banks in the world. He is known for his leadership and expertise in the financial industry. Some of his major accomplishments include steering JPMorgan Chase through the financial crisis and growing the company into an economic powerhouse.


Paul Tudor Jones: Jones is the founder and chief investment officer of Tudor Investment Corporation, a hedge fund known for its focus on global macroeconomic trends. He is known for his successful investments and his philanthropy. Some of his major accomplishments include the success of Tudor Investment Corporation and his book "The Little Book of Sideways Markets."


Howard Marks: Marks is the co-founder and co-chairman of Oaktree Capital Management, a leading investment management firm. He is known for his insightful market commentary and his book, "The Most Important Thing," which is widely read by investors. Some of his major accomplishments include the success of Oaktree Capital Management and his contributions to the investment industry through his writing and speaking.


Charlie Munger: Munger is the vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway and a long-time business partner of Warren Buffet. He is known for his wisdom and insights on investing and business. Some of his major accomplishments include his successful business career and his contributions to the investment industry through his writing and speaking.


George Soros: Soros is the founder and chairman of Soros Fund Management, a hedge fund known for its global macro investing approach. He is known for his successful investments and his philanthropy. Some of his major accomplishments include the success of Soros Fund Management and his book "The Alchemy of Finance," which is widely read by investors.


Larry Fink: Fink is the CEO of BlackRock, the world's largest asset management firm. He is known for his leadership and expertise in the investment industry. His significant accomplishments include growing BlackRock into a financial powerhouse and his book "The Road Ahead," which discusses the future of investing and the economy.


Steven Cohen: Cohen is the founder and CEO of Point72 Asset Management, a hedge fund known for its focus on quantitative investing. He is known for his successful investments and his philanthropy. Some of his major accomplishments include the success of Point72 Asset Management and his involvement in the art world through his philanthropy and art collection.


Sheldon Adelson: Adelson is the CEO of Las Vegas Sands, a leading casino and resort company. He is known for his business acumen and his philanthropy. Some of his major accomplishments include growing Las Vegas Sands into a major casino and resort company and his philanthropic efforts through the Adelson Family Foundation.


Elon Musk: Musk is the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla, and is known for his innovation and leadership in the technology and energy sectors. His major accomplishments include his work on electric vehicles and space travel and his book "Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future," which tells the story of his career and vision for the future.


Daniel Kahneman: Kahneman is a Nobel laureate in economics and is known for his work on behavioral economics and psychology. His major accomplishments include his research on decision-making and judgment and his book "Thinking, Fast and Slow," which discusses the psychological biases that influence our thinking and decision-making.


Paul Samuelson: Samuelson is a Nobel laureate in economics and is known for his contributions to the field of economics. Some of his major accomplishments include his work on the foundations of modern economic theory and his book "Economics," a widely-used textbook in economics.


Robert Shiller: Shiller is a Nobel laureate in economics and is known for his research on behavioral finance and the housing market. His major accomplishments include his work on stock market volatility and his book "Irrational Exuberance," which discusses the psychological factors that contribute to market bubbles.


John Bogle: Bogle is the founder of Vanguard Group, a leading investment management firm, and is known for his work on index fund investing. Some of his major accomplishments include his contributions to the development of index funds and his book "The Little Book of Common Sense Investing," which discusses the importance of low-cost index fund investing.


Nassim Nicholas Taleb: Taleb is a well-known economist and author and is known for his work on risk and uncertainty. Some of his major accomplishments include his book "The Black Swan," which discusses the impact of rare and unpredictable events on markets and society, and his concept of "antifragility," which refers to systems that become stronger in the face of stress and uncertainty.


James Montier: Montier is a well-known investment strategist and is known for his work on behavioral finance. Some of his major accomplishments include his book "The Little Book of Behavioral Investing," which discusses the psychological biases that can impact investment decisions, and his work on the importance of a long-term investment horizon.


Howard Marks: Marks is the co-founder and co-chairman of Oaktree Capital Management, a leading investment management firm. He is known for his insightful market commentary and his book "The Most Important Thing," which is widely read by investors. Some of his major accomplishments include the success of Oaktree Capital Management and his contributions to the investment industry through his writing and speaking.


Richard Thaler: Thaler is a Nobel laureate in economics and is known for his work on behavioral economics and finance. Some of his major accomplishments include his research on how people's behavior deviates from traditional economic models, and his book "Misbehaving: The Making of Behavioral Economics," which discusses the history and development of behavioral economics. Thaler is also known for his concept of "nudging," which refers to small interventions that can influence people's behavior positively.


Daniel Kahneman: Kahneman is a Nobel laureate in economics and is known for his work on behavioral economics and psychology. His major accomplishments include his research on decision-making and judgment, and his book "Thinking, Fast and Slow," which discusses the psychological biases that influence our thinking and decision-making.


Paul Samuelson: Samuelson is a Nobel laureate in economics and is known for his contributions to economics. Some of his major accomplishments include his work on the foundations of modern economic theory and his book "Economics," which is a widely-used textbook in economics.


Rakesh Jhunjhunwala: Jhunjhunwala is a well-known Indian investor and is known for his successful investment strategies and his partnership with his wife, Rekha Jhunjhunwala. Some of his major accomplishments include his successful investment career and his book "The Alchemy of Finance," which discusses his investment philosophy.


N.R. Narayana Murthy: Murthy is the co-founder of Infosys, a leading Indian technology company, and is known for his leadership and entrepreneurship. Some of his major accomplishments include co-founding and growing Infosys into a successful company and his book "A Better India: A Better World," which discusses his vision for India's future.


Uday Kotak: Kotak is the founder and CEO of Kotak Mahindra Bank, a leading Indian financial services company, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the financial industry. Some of his major accomplishments include growing Kotak Mahindra Bank into a successful financial services company and his book "The Unusual Billionaires," which discusses the stories of successful Indian entrepreneurs.


Rana Kapoor: Kapoor is the founder and former CEO of Yes Bank, an Indian bank, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the financial industry. Some of his major accomplishments include co-founding and growing Yes Bank into a successful bank and his book "The Personal History of Indian Banking," which discusses the history of banking in India.


Anand Mahindra: Mahindra is the chairman of the Mahindra Group, a leading Indian conglomerate, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the business world. Some of his major accomplishments include growing the Mahindra Group into a successful conglomerate and his book "The Rules of Life," which discusses his personal and professional philosophy.


Nandan Nilekani: Nilekani is the co-founder of Infosys and is known for his leadership and entrepreneurship in the technology industry. Some of his major accomplishments include co-founding and growing Infosys into a successful company. His book "Imagining India: The Idea of a Renewed Nation," discusses his vision for India's future.


Anil Agarwal: Agarwal is the chairman of Vedanta Resources, a leading Indian mining and natural resources company, and is known for his business acumen and leadership. Some of his major accomplishments include growing Vedanta Resources into a successful company and his book "The A to Z of Entrepreneurship," which discusses his experiences and insights as an entrepreneur.


Adi Godrej: Godrej is the chairman of the Godrej Group, a leading Indian conglomerate, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the business world. Some of his major accomplishments include growing the Godrej Group into a successful conglomerate, and his book "The Good Company," which discusses his vision for corporate social responsibility.


Sunil Munjal: Munjal is the co-founder and former CEO of Hero Motocorp, a leading Indian motorcycle company, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the automotive industry. Some of his major accomplishments include co-founding and growing Hero Motocorp into a successful company and his book "Business with a Purpose," which discusses his philosophy on social responsibility and sustainability.


Ratan Tata: Tata is the chairman emeritus of Tata Sons, the holding company of the Tata Group, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the business world. Some of his major accomplishments include growing the Tata Group into a successful conglomerate, and his book "The Tata Way," which discusses his leadership philosophy and the values of the Tata Group.


Mukesh Ambani: Ambani is the chairman and largest shareholder of Reliance Industries, a leading Indian conglomerate, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the business world. Some of his major accomplishments include growing Reliance Industries into a successful company and his involvement in various philanthropic and social initiatives.


Anand Mahindra: Mahindra is the chairman of the Mahindra Group, a leading Indian conglomerate, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the business world. Some of his major accomplishments include growing the Mahindra Group into a successful conglomerate and his involvement in various philanthropic and social initiatives.


Gautam Adani: Adani is the chairman of the Adani Group, a leading Indian conglomerate, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the business world. Some of his major accomplishments include growing the Adani Group into a successful conglomerate and his involvement in various philanthropic and social initiatives.


Dilip Shanghvi: Shanghvi is the founder and managing director of Sun Pharmaceuticals, a leading Indian pharmaceutical company, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the healthcare industry. Some of his major accomplishments include growing Sun Pharmaceuticals into a successful company and his involvement in various philanthropic and social initiatives.


Kumar Mangalam Birla: Birla is the chairman of the Aditya Birla Group, a leading Indian conglomerate, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the business world. Some of his major accomplishments include growing the Aditya Birla Group into a successful conglomerate and his involvement in various philanthropic and social initiatives.


Shashi Ruia: Ruia is the co-founder and chairman of the Essar Group, a leading Indian conglomerate, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the business world. Some of his major accomplishments include growing the Essar Group into a successful conglomerate and his involvement in various philanthropic and social initiatives.


Rahul Bajaj: Bajaj is the chairman of the Bajaj Group, a leading Indian conglomerate, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the business world. Some of his major accomplishments include growing the Bajaj Group into a successful conglomerate and his involvement in various philanthropic and social initiatives.


Cyrus Poonawalla: Poonawalla is the founder and chairman of the Serum Institute of India, a leading Indian pharmaceutical company, and is known for his leadership and expertise in the healthcare industry. Some of his major accomplishments include growing the Serum Institute of India into a successful company and his involvement in various philanthropic and social initiatives.


Rajesh Mehta: Mehta is the chairman and managing director of the Rajesh Exports Group, a leading Indian jewelry company. He is known for his leadership and expertise in the jewelry industry. Some of his major accomplishments include growing the Rajesh Exports Group into a successful company and his involvement in various philanthropic and social initiatives.



How can you learn from these and many more successful business owners?


You can start by reading my blog. I read and publish summaries of my learning on this website regularly. 

For more comprehensive learning, I can recommend a few other ideas.


  1. Reading books or articles written by successful business owners: Many successful business owners write books or articles about their experiences and the lessons they have learned, which can be a valuable source of learning and inspiration for others.

  2. Attending lectures or seminars: Many successful business owners speak at conferences or other events, sharing their experiences and insights with others. Attending these lectures or workshops can be a great way to learn from their expertise and knowledge.

  3. Following them on social media or joining their email list: Many successful business owners have a presence on social media or offer newsletters or email lists where they share their thoughts and insights. Following them on social media or joining their email list can be an excellent way to stay updated on their latest ideas and insights.

  4. Asking them for advice or mentorship: Many successful business owners are willing to share their knowledge and experience with others, either informally or through structured mentorship programs. Asking for their advice or seeking a mentorship opportunity can be a great way to learn from their expertise.

  5. Studying their business or reading case studies about them: Researching successful business owners and their businesses can be a valuable way to learn about their strategies, practices, and successes. Reading case studies or other materials that delve into the details of their businesses can provide a wealth of learning opportunities.

  6. Networking with them: Networking with successful business owners can be a great way to learn from their experiences and insights. This can be done through professional networking events, online networking platforms, or directly reaching out to them.

  7. Working for or interning with them: Another way to learn from successful business owners is to work for or intern with them. This can provide a hands-on opportunity to learn about their business practices and strategies, as well as the chance to learn from their guidance and mentorship.

  8. Learning from their failures: Successful business owners often attribute their success to the lessons they learned. Seeking out stories or case studies about their failures and how they learned from them can be a valuable way to learn from their experiences.

  9. Emulating their successful habits: Many successful business owners have specific habits or practices that contribute to their success. Learning about these habits and incorporating them into your routine can be an excellent way to learn from their success.

  10. Seeking out their mentors or role models: Successful business owners often have mentors or role models who have influenced their thinking and approach to business. Learning about these mentors or role models and reading about their ideas and philosophies can be a valuable way to learn from successful business owners.


Deepak Sharma

Deepak Sharma

Insurance Advisor / WealthGuard


  • My goal is simple, protect what is important to you. I focus my energy on discovering your exposure to risk and building a comprehensive plan to protect you against those risk.