Collection: Mohnish Pabrai - #49 'Building The Right Environment For Investment?'


Video Link: https://youtu.be/1Q0y4y0l5tg


In this episode, Mohnish Pabrai was asked Guy Spier has spoken a lot about building the right environment and cultivating patience. How does he cultivate patience and set himself up to succeed?


In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How Mohnish Pabrai build the right environment for investment?

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[Transcript]

(Source: https://youtu.be/dnS5xWIxo1I)

MOHNISH PABRAI 00:08

Yeah I mean, I think the – Well, I think Guy's way of take your patience is – from office point of view is just never going to the office. (Laughter) Have you check when is the last time he was in the office?


ARVIND NAVARATNAM 00:25

He's been on a little bit of a book tour.


MOHNISH PABRAI 00:28

Yeah, he's always on some tour. That's probably the best thing he can do for his portfolio is just – In fact, I told him when I sent him that article about Fidelity study. I said, I'm hesitating to send this to you because what little time you spend in the office, it's going to go very soon go to zero.


(Laughter) And his response was that he just installed a very high-end Espresso machine. And so he is going in for that and so that's actually fine. Well, I think it's a challenge but – The way – you know, the way I've tried to set up the environment is first of all, you know, things have to be at a total no-brainer level for me to take the action of making a change.


You know, so when I go into the office I don't go in with any interest or perspective that I'm going to make changes. Are we doing okay Arvind?


ARVIND NAVARATNAM 01:47

We are doing great.


MOHNISH PABRAI 01:49

Okay. So basically I don't go in with the idea that we're going to, you know, buy some stocks today or sell some stocks or any of that. I just don't have that. In fact, normally when I'm putting trades and I put them in after hours so that the market being open has [Inaudible] impacts.


And then the second is that, you know, I have many other activities that I'm involved with outside of buying and selling stocks. I mean, I don't run the foundation but I do have some time that the foundation takes.


Thirdly, Dhandho take some time. I spent about 4-5 hours of me playing bridge which is also a great activity that I strongly recommend. And you know, then I play racquetball and go biking and so on.


So and I like to read and I read all kind of things which have nothing to do with investing. And so basically, there's – you know, I would say that the I enjoy learning about businesses and I enjoy understanding what they're worth and so on so forth.


But the thing is that to get to point of making investments usually they have to be at you know, [Inaudible] total no-brainer because you know, I have to sell something to make room and so on.


So that's generally, how I manage it and the other way to – I would said to manage the environment is to not have a team. So if you are in a structure where there are other partners or analysts or associates.


Then you know, everyone going to come to work with the idea that we are going to do something today and we are going to change the world today and all those things. And I think that would be a negative. I don't have a Bloomberg Terminal, you know, I just try to keep the environment as much away from getting you to be active.


I don't talk about the position much, there's not much frequent communication with investors. When I'm communicating with investors, I do not talk about what we presently owned or presently buying because again, if I got questions on those then I'd start defending why I bought them and then that leads to a commitment and consistency bias.


Which means that even if I'm wrong, I will say I told him all these things so I can't sell it because then they will think I'm stupid or something. And again, that starts violating inner scorecard, it starts violating Power vs. Force and so on.


So you have to do things in a manner which make you kind of in alignment and also, make it easy to do what you are trying to do. And that's the way to do it.

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