Principles by Ray Dalio

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The following is an excerpt from Ray Dalio’s Principles, first shared in 2011. A revised, updated version will be published by Simon & Schuster in September 2017. For more information, please visit principles.com.

Summary and Table of Principles

To Get the Culture Right…

1) Trust in Truth …

2) Realize that you have nothing to fear from truth. …

3) Create an environment in which everyone has the right to understand what makes sense and no one has the right to hold a critical opinion without speaking up about it. …

4) Be extremely open. …

5) Have integrity and demand it from others. a) Never say anything about a person you wouldn’t say to them directly, and don’t try people without accusing them to their face. b) Don’t let “loyalty” stand in the way of truth and openness. …

6) Be radically transparent. a) Record almost all meetings and share them with all relevant people. …

7) Don’t tolerate dishonesty. a) Don’t believe it when someone caught being dishonest says they have seen the light and will never do that sort of thing again.

8) Create a Culture in Which It Is OK to Make Mistakes but Unacceptable Not to Identify, Analyze, and Learn From Them …

9) Recognize that effective, innovative thinkers are going to make mistakes. …

10) Do not feel bad about your mistakes or those of others. Love them! …

11) Observe the patterns of mistakes to see if they are a product of weaknesses. …

12) Do not feel bad about your weaknesses or those of others. …

13) Don’t worry about looking good—worry about achieving your goals. …

14) Get over “blame” and “credit” and get on with “accurate” and “inaccurate.” …

15) Don’t depersonalize mistakes. …

16) Write down your weaknesses and the weaknesses of others to help remember and acknowledge them. …

17) When you experience pain, remember to reflect. …

18) Be self-reflective and make sure your people are self-reflective. …

19) Teach and reinforce the merits of mistake-based learning. a) The most valuable tool we have for this is the issues log (explained fully later), which is aimed at identifying and learning from mistakes.

20) Constantly Get in Synch …

21) Constantly get in synch about what is true and what to do about it. …

22) Talk about “Is it true?” and “Does it make sense?” …

23) Fight for right. …

24) Be assertive and open-minded at the same time.

a) Ask yourself whether you have earned the right to have an opinion.

b) Recognize that you always have the right to have and ask questions.

c) Distinguish open-minded people from closed-minded people.

d) Don’t have anything to do with closed-minded, inexperienced people.

e) Be wary of the arrogant intellectual who comments from the stands without having played on the field.

f) Watch out for people who think it’s embarrassing not to know. …

25) Make sure responsible parties are open-minded about the questions and comments of others. …

26) Recognize that conflicts are essential for great relationships because they are the means by which people determine whether their principles are aligned and resolve their differences.

a) Expect more open-minded disagreements at Bridgewater than at most other firms.

b) There is giant untapped potential in disagreement, especially if the disagreement is between two or more thoughtful people.

Continue reading by visiting Ray Dalio’s site or download the complete PDF by clicking here