Here is another
Anyone know what Patrick pays himself as CEO? Go ahead and check, I will wait...
It is 100k. Less than all of his generalissimo. Who, whatever their expertise in their respective fields, are as interesting as watching grass grow when they take the mic on earnings calls. Maybe they are just intimidated. He has that effect, you know. He never aims to intimidate (and is puzzzled why people are) but great intellects have that effect regardless. Anyhoo.
It used to be he paid himself a fat zero. One day I suggested he take a modest salary as this would set a better example as a CEO. Zero says I don't care about this money, it is peanuts to me. A modest salary says something else entirely, more quietly. So he asks, "what do you think, 100k?" I was thinking quite a bit more. But he seems satisfied. I press on, partly because I think I have a point and partly because I am tipsy on my success, having made a modestly positive input on my hero's decision. He smiles charitably, "ok you made your point". "Don't push your luck" seems to be the undertone.
The bigger point is, his wealth is all tied up in the success of overstock. It is not like Buffett is paying him a retainer ( and how meager would that be?) But he was insistent on not having an insurance policy by way of a big fat salary, options, etc. he doesn't just have skin in the game -- this is it for him. And he would never mention it in a million years. Maybe because he keeps the ledger of success internally. And all the amazing stories about him are what you hear from other people or what you experience yourself.