Insight from Colin Symons
Strengths • Values • Principles
SCM has developed a living document that articulates the fundamental values we want our work culture to be based upon – that articulates where we are coming from and, within that context, articulates the principles for how we want to work together to build an ever more successful enterprise. The document serves as a permanent, common focus for us in building an agreed, common culture of excellence. We want to identify what is important to SCM as an enterprise – what are our foundation values – and we want to build the specific teamwork principles by which we can achieve what we set out to accomplish.
The basic goal is to have good people working together in a good culture using good business practices. Values and principles are the basis for creating a consistently excellent work culture. Values are what we consider important – literally what we value. Principles are what enable us to do our work consistent with those values. Principles guide our daily actions; principles are concepts that can be applied every day to how we go about doing our work.
Our Core Values include:
- Constantly Reassess – has anything changed; have we missed anything?
- Never make decisions based on what you wish were true. What is really true is far more important.
- Remain as open-minded as possible.
- It is much more important to arrive at the right answer than to be right.
- Always think about second order consequences. It is critical to consider the downstream consequences of actions.
- We have to work hard. You can’t be excellent without pretty consistent effort every day.
- Improve — Stand still and you will be passed. It is important to grow. Read, think, and consider trying something new.
- Be intellectually independent.
- Be accountable. This defines character – facing reality and getting yourself to do the difficult things.
- Know what you’re working towards.
- Recognize mistakes, learn from them, and get better at what you do.
- Teamwork — All of us together should be better than any one of us.
Our Management Principles include:
- Hire the right people.
- Recognize differences among people.
- Get the right people making decisions.
- Train people well.
- Solve problems.
- Consider the overall enterprise.
- Honesty is of utmost importance.
- Mistakes happen, learn from them.
- Teamwork is critical.
In order to achieve the desired level of excellence our clients expect from us, that excellence must be built from the inside out, from the ground up. It must be built into the foundation of the soul of our firm.
Colin E. Symons, CFA
Chief Investment Officer