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Billionaires Get All The Good Lines

By Art van Bodegraven | 08/06/2017 | 2:04 PM

Please enjoy the thoughts and musings of our friend, supporter, and long-time contributor Art van Bodegraven Jr., who passed away on June 18, 2017. Art was a prolific writer and had amassed a collection of unpublished blog posts he had planned to run well into the future. To honor his memory, we will continue to post these remaining blogs as he had intended. If you’ve been a fan of The Art of Art blog, check out our tribute.


Maybe it's not fair, but anyone with a net worth greater than a thousand million bucks has an easier time getting a quote in the New Amsterdam Times than you, me, or the lamp post. Of course, you and me would be in danger of falling and hitting our heads, without the support of the lamp post.

David Rockefeller (You recognize the name, right?), like other billionaires, is presumed to be wise, as well as filthy rich. Unlike some other mega-heirs, David has worked at a real job his entire life, and has been spectacularly successful at it. He has left passing out bushels of bucks to worthy causes to other family members, who apparently have been embarrassed by John D's life of work, relish for getting his hands dirty, and the creation of an entire industry (Esso/ExxonMobil, Standard OIl of Indiana, SOCONY, which joined hands with Mobil, Chevron, and Phillips.)

Maybe it's worth revisiting some of David's thoughts, marking his status as the world's oldest Bazillionaire.  Thanks to Forbes for uncovering the real man behind the curtain.

Simple principles: Profit is important; make money and friends; do business with friends; champion capitalism; work together with government; live within youir means; and, create soemthing that lasts.  The right last name opens doors; becoming a father provides new perspective; stand by your family; family can surprise the most; divorce and politics are expensive. Get out of the office, far out; embrace adventure; find a hobby; find a good teacher; and, live free of any regrets. The wrong last name closes doors; one boss is better than two; if you're upset, write your congressman; haters will hate; and, opposites do attract.

There's much to like — and agree with — in David's ruminations.  This is not a clan of evil trolls bent on world domination. Sorry to disappoint …

In our working world, the relevant lessons might be: success does not disqualify a person from being tough and smart; building a strong business on the strength of relationships just could be a more sustainable approach than arms'-length transactional deals, and family is important, nearly as powerful as friendships.

Late passing note: David passed away, at 101, on the first day of Spring — and is missed.





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About Art van Bodegraven

Art van Bodegraven

Art van Bodegraven (1939 - 2017) was Managing Principal of the van Bodegraven Associates consultancy and Founding Principal of Discovery Executive Services, which develops and delivers supply chain educational programs. He was formerly Chair of the Supply Chain Group AG, Partner at The Progress Group LLC, Development Executive at CSCMP, Practice Leader with S4 Consulting, and a Managing Director in Coopers & Lybrand's consulting practice. Concentrating in supply chain management and logistics for over 20 years in his 50+ year business career, he has led ground-breaking strategic, operational, and educational projects for leading US and global clients. Art was principal co-author of DC Velocity's Basic Training monthly column for a decade, and was the principal co-author, with Ken Ackerman, of Fundamentals of Supply Chain Management, the definitive primer in the field. His popular blog, The Art of Art, has been a staple of DC Velocity's web site since its inception.



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