A decade ago, we started a new annual tradition: sitting down to write a letter about our work in philanthropy. We got the idea from our friend Warren Buffett, who’s been writing brilliant reports to the shareholders of Berkshire Hathaway for more than half a century.

This year we’re marking our 10th letter by answering 10 tough questions about our work that people often ask us. Here is one of them. You can read the rest at gatesletter.com.

Why are you really giving your money away—what’s in it for you?

Bill: It’s not because we think about how we’ll be remembered. We would be delighted if someday diseases like polio and malaria are a distant memory, and the fact that we worked on them is too.

There are two reasons to do something like this. One is that it’s meaningful work. Even before we got married, we talked about how we would eventually spend a lot of time on philanthropy. We think that’s a basic responsibility of anyone with a lot of money. Once you’ve taken care of yourself and your children, the best use of extra wealth is to give it back to society.

The other reason is that we have fun doing it. Both of us love digging into the science behind our work. At Microsoft, I got deep into computer science. At the foundation, it’s computer science plus biology, chemistry, agronomy, and more. I’ll spend hours talking to a crop researcher or an HIV expert, and then I’ll go home, dying to tell Melinda what I’ve learned.

It’s rare to have a job where you get to have both a big impact and a lot of fun. I had it with Microsoft, and I have it with the foundation. I can’t imagine a better way to spend the bulk of my time.

Melinda: We both come from families that believed in leaving the world better than you found it. My parents made sure my siblings and I took the social justice teachings of the Catholic Church to heart. Bill’s mom was known, and his dad still is known, for showing up to advocate for a dizzying number of important causes and support more local organizations than you can count.

When we got to know Warren Buffett, we discovered that he was steeped in those same values, even though he grew up in a different place and at a different time. When Warren entrusted us with giving away a large portion of his wealth, we redoubled our efforts to live up to the values we share.

Of course, these values are not unique to the three of us. Millions of people give back by volunteering their time and donating money to help others. We are, however, in the more unusual position of having a lot of money to donate. Our goal is to do what our parents taught us and do our part to make the world better.

Bill and I have been doing this work, more or less full-time, for 17 years. That’s the majority of our marriage. It’s almost the entirety of our children’s lives. By now the foundation’s work has become inseparable from who we are. We do the work because it’s our life.

We’ve tried to pass on values to our children by talking with them about the foundation’s work, and, as they’ve gotten older, taking them with us on trips so they can see it for themselves. We’ve connected to each other through thousands of daily debriefs on learning sessions, site visits, and strategy meetings. Where we go, who we spend our time with, what we read and watch and listen to—these decisions are made through the prism of our work at the foundation (when we’re not watching The Crown).

Maybe 20 years ago, we could have made a different choice about what to do with our wealth. But now it’s impossible to imagine. If we’d decided to live a different life then, we wouldn’t be us now. This is who we chose to be.

Read the rest of our Annual Letter and ask us your toughest question at gatesletter.com.

Written by

Bill Gates
Co-chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Originally at https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/why-were-really-giving-our-money-away-bill-gates

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The famous actor Arnold Schwarzenegger posted a picture of him sleeping in the street under his famous bronze statue in Columbus, Ohio on 15Jan16, and wrote sadly “How times have changed”.

The reason he wrote the sentence was not only because he was old, but because when the governor of California opened the hotel with the statue in front of him during Annual Arnold Fitness Festival in 2014. The hotel officials told Arnold: "At any time you can come and have a room reserved in your name".

When Arnold left governorship and went to the hotel, the administration refused to give him a room arguing that the hotel was fully booked.

He brought a cover and slept under the statue and asked people to imagine it.

He wanted to convey a message that when he was in a position they were praising him, and when he lost this position they forgot and did not fullfill their promise to him.

Yes, times have changed. Do not trust your position or your owner or your power or your intelligence.

All of this will not last after death.

GABBAR SINGH was a MANAGEMENT GURU, as is reflected in some of the timeless management lessons he imparted through the blockbuster SHOLAY!!!

Read On…They are awesome..!👌

1. Jo Darr Gaya – Samjho Mar Gaya!
Courage and enterprise are important factors for laying the successful foundation of a growth oriented business.
👍😃👍

2. Kitne Admi The..??
It’s important to know the competition and its size. He understood that even a small team can make a difference.
👍😃👍

3. Arey O Sambha, Kitna Inaam Rakhe Hai Sarkar Hum Par ?
Know your market value. Promoting one’s own brand is very important and to be reiterated always.
👍😃👍

4. Goli 6 Aur Aadmi 3!
Create an illusion where his subordinates had a chance of survival but kills them in the next scene.
Moral – Perform or perish.
👍😃👍

5. Le Ab Goli Kha
Sometimes in the interest of the organisation you have to take hard and unpopular decisions….
So sometimes a leader has to ‘fire’ some employees.
👍😃👍

6. Yeh Ramgarh Waale Apni Betiyon Ko Kaunsi Chakki Ka Aata Khilate Hai Re.
Market research is important to understand value propositions !!
👍😃👍

7. Yeh Haath Mujhey Dedey Thakur.
Identify elements of threats in the market and take measures to minimise them.
👍😃👍

8. Holi Kab Hai, Kab Hai Holi ?
Conduct advance mapping of key events within the industry and devise penetration strategy to have a competitive edge over your rivals.😊

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