Back The competitive advantage of high performing teams

The competitive advantage of high performing teams | Vijay Viswanathan | EP06

May 9, 2018 Print

Featuring Vijay Viswanathan, Mawer’s Director of Research, on the key characteristics of high performing investment teams.

Highlights include:

  • Why we view Mawer's culture as a competitive advantage
  • Some performance building frameworks
  • What it means to be a “steward of the jersey”



A transcript of this episode is available below, modified for a more enjoyable reading experience. For more posts exploring the ideas we talk about in the episode, check out our Related Reads links.

Guest Speakers

1:04  Having a great culture is a firm differentiator

Mawer’s culture evolution:

  1. Charles Mawer: Do the right thing for clients and success will follow
  2. 2004: Jim Ware and Focus Consulting (High Performing Investment Teams)

3:18  Seeing performance culture as a horizontal line: Above the line and below the line behaviours

4:17  The Secret: Trust

Trust is the vital starting point and leads to above the line behaviours: candour, curiosity, openness of thought

5:30  Putting frameworks and tools of high performing teams into practise

7:27  The Secret: Vulnerability and how this leads to value added investment decisions

8:30  Vijay shares his personal experience

  • Worst investment as a 12 year-old
  • Being the “token brown kid”

11:37  The leader decides with input model

13:19  Frameworks for cultivating culture:

  1. Playing to strengths
  2. Definition of genius area
  3. Setting clear expectations
  4. Creating feedback loops 

15:57  Example of a high performing team: New Zealand All Blacks Steward of the jersey model

18:24  Measuring the inputs as opposed to the outputs (performance)

19:33  Incentives:

  • Monetary compensation only takes you so far; it’s the content of people’s character that is the true incentive
  • It is the role of leadership to put people in the position where they can do meaningful work

24:22  Getting a job at Mawer and the interview process

27:15  Where high performing teams go wrong

29:58  Rapid Fire Round:

  1. Best sports travel experience
  2. Favourite way to relax
  3. What are you reading now?
  4. Thatha stories
  5. Biggest surprise upon becoming a father

Related Reads

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This blog and its contents, including references to specific securities,  are for informational purposes only. Information relating to investment approaches or individual investments should not be construed as advice or endorsement. Any views expressed in this blog were prepared based upon the information available at the time and are subject to change. All information is subject to possible correction. In no event shall Mawer Investment Management Ltd. be liable for any damages arising out of, or in any way connected with, the use or inability to use this blog appropriately.

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