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Bill Gates shares the Warren Buffett-inspired scheduling tip he wishes he had learned earlier

Erin Snodgrass   

Bill Gates shares the Warren Buffett-inspired scheduling tip he wishes he had learned earlier
  • Bill Gates said he learned an important scheduling lesson from fellow billionaire Warren Buffett.
  • The Microsoft founder used to schedule his day down to the minute.

Microsoft founder Bill Gates says you should stop overbooking your calendar.

The billionaire shared a scheduling tip in a Friday Threads post, citing fellow billionaire Warren Buffett.

"It took far too long for me to realize that you don't have to fill every second of your schedule to be successful," Gates wrote. "(In hindsight, it's a lesson I could have learned a lot sooner had I taken more peeks at Warren Buffett's intentionally light calendar.)"

While at Microsoft, Gates was known for his meticulous schedules, literally planning his day down to the minute — an approach Tesla CEO Elon Musk has also been said to take.

Last year, Gates admitted that he previously thought sleep was "lazy" and competed with his colleagues to see who could get the least rest.

"I thought that was the only way you could do things," Gates said of his packed schedule in a 2017 interview alongside Buffett.

Gates said things changed for him when he saw Buffett's intentionally sparse calendar.

"You control your time," Gates said. "It's not a proxy of your seriousness that you fill every minute in your schedule."

Buffett, who is CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, has long been a champion of increasing productivity by decreasing busy work — an approach supported by science.

People who have the freedom to focus their time on creative work as opposed to performative busywork are happier, more productive, and more engaged at work, Business Insider previously reported.

After seeing Buffett's schedule, Gates relaxed his own calendar. In 2020, BI documented a day in the life of the Microsoft billionaire, which included ample amounts of time for playing tennis, reading, blogging, and spending time with his family.


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