I often compare the craft of a money manager with that of a gardener: To have a great garden takes decades, not a few months. To successfully grow great trees and flowers, you have to understand your environment and capabilities (you can’t grow the same flowers in Quebec than in Florida). You have to know the soil, the temperatures, the orientation of the sun, etc.
And to build a garden is a dynamic process: you have to continually take great care of your plants.
But the most important ingredient of all is PATIENCE. As I always say: “You won’t get much of a garden, if you remove a tree after six months because it hasn’t grown fast enough.” A portfolio needs the same patience. Great companies weren’t built in a few years. Like trees, they need decades to blossom.
François Rochon – Canadian portfolio manager, founder and President of Giverny Capital (b. 1968), Quotations book 2023