We’re all familiar with the eccentric hiring practices at Ray Dalio’s Bridgewater—the world’s largest, most successful and perhaps most mysterious hedge fund. Sources that have experienced Bridgewater’s hiring process told Clusterstock that the interview includes spending about 30% of the time talking about one’s weaknesses, videotaped in-person sessions and discussing opinions on torture.
And just as ambiguous as the process is, what qualifies a candidate to be hired at Bridgewater is equally elusive.
But now, thanks to a Bloomberg Businessweek feature on “How to Get Hired At…,” we have another enigmatic answer from the king of hedge funds himself. Dalio told Businessweek—
Interest in the subject matter is a minor consideration. Unlike a lot of firms, we look at what someone is like rather than what they did before. We are first interested in people’s values, second interested in their abilities, and least interested in their precise skills. We want independent thinkers who are willing to put aside their egos to find out what is true. Did the candidate come up with a new idea and build it out? Like if when he was 15 he mowed lawns and developed that into a business by getting others to mow lawns with mowers he bought them. We ask people questions that actually don’t have a right or wrong answer, such as: Should there be a market for transplant organs? The answer doesn’t really matter. It’s totally great if the person’s thinking on the subject ends in a different place than the beginning, because moving forward together to get at the best answer is more important than being right from the outset.
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