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Focus on Leadership At Mawer only their investment philosophy is boring

Mawer Investment Management’s chief operating officer Colin Zvaniga, from left, president Craig Senyk and chief marketing officer Allison Webb, in the Calgary office. Photo by Wil Andruschak © Postmedia Network Inc.

Joel Schlesinger © Postmedia Network Inc.

Mawer Investment Management — one of Canada’s most successful, independent money managers — believes in prudent investment decisions.

“Our motto is ‘Be Boring. Make Money,’” says Craig Senyk, president of the Calgary-based investment firm founded in 1974 by Charles Mawer.

“Investing isn’t about speculating; it’s about preserving clients’ capital and growing it long-term,” Senyk adds. “If you want to gamble, go to Las Vegas.”

More than 47 years later, the strategy of investing clients’ money with one eye on wealth preservation and the other on steady, long-term growth has proven highly effective with the firm achieving enviable client retention, attracting new clients and garnering dozens of awards.

And while the company’s investment philosophy might be described as reserved, they take a different approach when it comes to their employees.

“We want our people to live their best lives, which means we want them to operate in their area of genius,” Senyk says. “Because, if you’re doing that, you’re naturally going to excel at your job and that has a positive impact on results.”

Mawer’s carefully curated culture is about more than keeping team members happy and engaged. It’s also about fostering growth and learning.

“We talk a lot about candour and curiosity,” Senyk says.

As such, all Mawer team members are encouraged to contribute ideas, whether it’s their first day or their 25th year on the job. It’s ideas that matter — not titles.

Employees are also encouraged to pursue lifelong learning. Mawer has several initiatives to help quench its team members’ thirst for knowledge, including a $5,000 annual stipend for educational pursuits, whether these opportunities are related to their job or for personal growth.

The company also supports staff when it comes to community involvement, including matching their individual contributions by up to $3,000 annually.

All these efforts help keep team members engaged, which is critical to the firm achieving its mission of providing financial peace of mind for clients, Senyk says.

It’s Mawer’s perspective that by combining a systematic and disciplined investment approach with an unwavering focus on firm culture, they can generate excellent long-term results.

And that’s anything but dull.

This story was created by Content Works, Postmedia’s commercial content division, on behalf of Calgary Economic Development.

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