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BOS: Trust and Purpose

I love working at SEI; I’ve been here for almost 10 years now.  Our company is about to celebrate its 25th anniversary, an amazing accomplishment for a boutique, locally focused, employee-owned consulting firm.  Even more amazing, the core values which our founder built this great company on continue to fuel the fire that runs our business today.  Contrary to the typical life cycle of a growing organization, strengthening our culture has been an integral part of our growth, rather than a casualty.

As Jason mentioned in his post: it’s all about the people!  I run the Boston office, which has some unique characteristics that set us apart from the rest of the firm. For example:

  • We root for championship teams and believe Tom Brady is innocent – it’s basic science!;
  • Everyone thinks we talk funny, but none of us understand why; and
  • We dominate in bar and tailgate sports (pool, darts, corn hole, etc.); though I expect the teams in our other offices would offer a contrarian view.

However, what’s best about SEI is the fact that by design, we can be different, but still share important characteristics with our brothers and sisters across our offices.

  • We know each one of us is an important contributor to our success. What we do every day matters and has a measurable impact to the success of the company; whether it’s delivery, sales, or recruiting.
  • We work hard every day to make sure that our environment is one of trust. We watch out for each other, pick each other up when one of us stumbles, and drop whatever we’re doing when someone needs our help.
  • None of us are Wonder Woman or Superman.  We all have our own strengths and our own weaknesses.  General Stan McChrystal said it best in his book, Team of Teams: “processes that create the trust and common purpose that bond great small teams, dispel the fallacy that it takes supermen (and/or superwomen) to forge super teams”.  We all are able, and expected, to contribute to the success of our company in our own way, to the best of our ability.

As a result of continuous investment in our people and our culture, we enjoy deep relationships with our clients as trusted partners.  We’ve thrived over the 25 years we’ve been in business by sticking to our core fundamentals.  We have a culture of which we’re exceedingly proud and one that we protect like the gold in Fort Knox!

However as Marshall Goldsmith has noted, we know that what has driven our current success does not guarantee our future.  We’re always learning and growing.  What do you love about where you work?  What does it take to create and sustain a strong culture and an environment of trust?  We’d love to hear from you.

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