This week’s conversation was especially fun. I have a long history with my guest, Dave Chilton, but this was the first time we’d met in person. I’d heard stories about him from people I work with for twenty years, so getting to finally spend time with him was a real treat. I’ll let him reveal the connection.
This episode will also be fun for listeners in the US, as Dave is one of the best-known people in Canada because of his famous book the wealthy barber and his more recent stint as a dragon on Dragon’s Den, which is Canada’s version of Shark Tank.
I called this episode the human blitzkrieg because of Dave’s relentlessly positive style and curiosity. He has dabbled in many parts of the business and investing worlds. He is one of the most successful authors in history, has invested in dozens of interesting businesses, and is a Jedi master in the long-lost art of the phone conversation.
We discuss business, investing, and writing. If you enjoy this conversation and have any aspirations as a writer, I highly recommend you check out the series of videos Dave and his son recently released called the Chilton method, which I will link in the show notes. I have no financial interest in this recommendation, and neither does Dave! He put it together in large part to stop people from calling him for advice. We discuss a few of the hundred plus lessons from his course in this conversation.
As you’ll be able to tell early and often, it is hard not to have a good time with Dave.
2:54 – (First question) – A quick introduction and why David is so well known throughout Canada
3:41 – Dragon’s Den
4:38 – David is asked to explain how he got involved with Jim O’Shaughnessy at the Royal Bank
6:40 – Genesis of the Wealthy Barber and how David got interested in finance and investing
12:04 – A look at his video course on how to write and market content
13:30 – How do you know when to stick with a product
15:18 – What was the decision to self-publish
18:20 – Why you need to pay more attention to the dedication page in a book and move it to the back
19:44 – Why forewords in a book are a waste
22:01 – The importance of listening to your readers to create a product they want
23:00 – How the combination of human instinct with data can help to create more successful products
23:59 – Why did he choose to write on financial planning
25:26 – How did David transition his thinking once he started to make real money
29:01 – It seems like boring investments tend to do well over time
30:23 – David’s investing philosophy over his lifetime
31:44 – Exploring the due diligence of investing in a stock
36:16 – Most interesting things David learned about Mongolian gold exploration
39:09 – How David got involved in Dragon Den’s
42:17 – The process behind picking a company to invest in from the show
44:44 – Looking at permanent investing and how David continues to invest in small businesses outside of the show and what he looks for in making those decisions
47:14 – What were the negative screens when checking out a business
50:04 – The importance of smart marketing when selling a product or service
53:54 – The practice of writing a good intro for everything you do as an exercise in determining if an idea has potential
58:41 – What does David do with a bad book
1:00:22 – How Patrick discovers new books to read
1:01:56 – People are paying less attention to Amazon reviews
1:03:20 – The power of brand as credibility in media suggestions
1:04:45 – Alex Moazed Podcast
1:06:54 – How publishers are impacting the length of books
1:07:52 – Exploring the impact of books all being the same price
1:09:39 – Shifting to fintech and where David fits into that space
1:15:46 – The shift to passive investing
1:19:26 – David gets Patrick to clarify his investing process and strategy
1:25:22 – Michael Mauboussin Podcast
1:25:54 – Philosophical Economics
1:25:56 – Has David ever thought about operating a business as a founder
1:28:35 – David’s most memorable day in his career
1:33:43 – Kindest thing anyone has ever done for David
For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.
Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub
Follow Patrick on twitter at @patrick_oshag