Ray Dalio’s Bridgewater, arguably the most successful and largest hedge fund in the world, is known for its cult-like office environment and its emphasis on preserving its inner culture. Now, we have a small glimpse into how the hedge fund find the employees to continue that philosophy.
Business Insider spoke to a recent college graduate who applied and interviewed for an entry level position at the Connecticut-based firm. The applicant, who preferred to remain anonymous, dropped out of the interview process when he received another job offer, but had made it far enough to do a phone interview and was being penciled in for an in-person interview before he took the other job.
During the phone interview, the Bridgewater interviewer spent about 10 minutes of the half-hour interview grilling the applicant about one topic—his weaknesses.
“They’re very interested in you being able to talk frankly about personal weaknesses and things you’re not good at,” he told Business Insider. “It was very much about me identifying things I’m not good at… and they wanted a solution to that. So it was me thinking about ways I could improve to be a better person and a better employee.”
Everyone expects the “What is your weakness?” question when they walk into an interview, but this one sounds a bit extreme. The applicant said he believed that the process of walking himself through his own weak points and analysing them was Bridgewater’s way of testing his critical thinking abilities, adding that the interviewer was not aggressive in his/her approach.
Whatever the case, if you’re interested in joining Dalio up in Connecticut—it may be time to drop the Wall Street Journal and just do a little more internal reflection.