Charles Koch, age 80, is a billionaire businessman hailing from Wichita, Kansas. Koch, with his brother David, is the co-owner of Koch Industries, the second largest privately-held company in the United States. Koch consistently ranks among the top 10 or 20 richest people in the world, with almost all of his wealth derived from his massively successful company. As CEO, Koch has been the driving force behind such classic American brands and products like Lycra, Brawny paper towels, Dixie cups, and Quilted Northern toilet paper.
The Koch brothers were left a sizable inheritance by their father, Fred Koch, who amassed a large fortune after he developed a new method for refining crude oil. Koch recently shared the letter his father wrote to his sons discussing their inheritance and how it could be “either a blessing or a curse.” Fred Koch went on to write that they could use it as a “valuable tool for accomplishment” or “squander it foolishly.” Koch discussed how his father instilled work ethic in his children from a very young age. Charles Koch did work around the farm, starting with digging up dandelions at age 6, and “graduating” to mucking stalls, baling hay, and milking cows when he was older.
Koch claims his father taught him that in order to be happy you need to contribute and develop your skills. He firmly believes that one must develop work ethic and learn to work hard from a young age. “If people don’t learn to do hard work by the time they’re in their 30s, they probably will never be very productive at work because you learn things working that you don’t learn in school” he stated.
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