The three personality traits all billionaires have in common

Jessica Morris
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Marc Zuckerberg who co-founded Facebook is one of the world's youngest billionaires (Source: Getty)

A smart approach to risk-taking, a curious mind which is also capable of intense focus, as well as dogged determination are three personality traits shared by the world's richest individuals.

These are the findings of UBS and PWC which look at 1,300 of the world's billionaires using surveys, case studies and academic research, while conducting interviews with 30 of them.

"Self-made billionaires have distinct personality characteristics that allow them to approach the challenge of creating new value differently from most corporate managers and leaders," it said.

1. Smart risk-taking

This is a tendency to focus on the upside while remaining realistic on the downside, an eye for opportunities where they will have an asymmetrical advantage, as well as a strong ability to recover from failure.

"Self-made billionaires tend to have a very optimistic attitude towards risk, focus on risks they understand and find smart ways to reduce them," it said.

"What’s more, their keen instinct for risk and opportunity often allows them to exit at the peak, transferring risk to others."

2. Curiosity coupled with obsessive business focus

Self-made billionaires share an innate curiosity which drives them to constantly look for untapped opportunities. But one found, they're able to pursue these with such a tenancy that can only be described as "tunnel vision".

Another aspect of this obsessive business focus is a tendency to quantify everything as well as the ability to make economic decisions without emotions.

"The one critical resource that even billionaires cannot buy it time. This is why access to them is so highly restricted and their schedule is so tightly scripted," it said.

"On the upside, if they decide to give you some of their time they are fully dedicated. None of the meetings we had were disrupted by an assistant, there were no calls and none of them looked at their mobile devices to check messages."

3. Dogged determination

Self-made billionaires are typically serial entrepreneurs who've learnt from their past mistakes and gone on to do bigger, better things.

High levels of resilience, alongside tremendous work ethics, have helped them confront and overcome obstacles as well as persevere in the face of adversity.

"Self-made billionaires do not view risk or failure in the same way as the general population," it said.

"[This is because] they often view risk from the perspective of not being positioned to capitalize on a business opportunity."

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