• June 6, 2014: Sign contract
  • June 9, 2014: First day on the job
  • June 19, 2014: Receive July Metro North pass in mail (paid with pre-tax dollars)
  • August 1, 2014: Approached on the way to the men’s room and asked how the struggle between your upper level you and your lower level you are coming; have no idea WTF this means
  • September 22, 2014: Overhear Ray talking to a lieutenant about a healthcare PM being one part Socrates, one part armadillo…scratch head
  • November 10, 2014: November 10, 2014: Confess to co-worker that it’s been months since you started and you still feel like you were just dropped onto a new planet with no instruction manual…are told this is normal
  • December 6, 2015: Acclimate to corporate culture

For most new Bridgewater employees, “it’s a little bit like entering the Navy SEALs,” says Mr. Dalio. “There’s a period—usually about 18 months—of sort of adaptation to this. And some make it and some don’t make it. And so we call it ‘getting to the other side.'” He adds that “the other side looks like: They can’t work anywhere else and the reason they can’t work anywhere else is they don’t know what anybody’s thinking anywhere else. They don’t have an ability to speak their mind anywhere else. They don’t have the guardrails of their weaknesses. Everybody’s got weaknesses. They can’t candidly address weaknesses. “We describe it as: there’s the upper-level you and the lower-level you. The human brain is part thoughtful man,” he explains, “and part animal. And you have to drag yourself. And we see the struggle as between the upper-level them and the lower-level them.” In other words the brain wants honest feedback but the emotions aren’t always ready to handle it. “It’s not a struggle between us and them typically. It’s a struggle between what do they want” and “what happens in their emotional reactions to that.”

The Soul of a Hedge Fund ‘Machine’ [WSJ]

32 comments (hidden to protect delicate sensibilities)
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Comments (32)

  1. Posted by Concerned | June 9, 2014 at 1:15 PM

    Where are the clients' self-aggrandizing cult leaders?

  2. Posted by T Cruise | June 9, 2014 at 1:45 PM

    Sound like scientology

  3. Posted by Shecky Descartes | June 9, 2014 at 2:03 PM

    Two Bridgewater traders are having sex in a company broom closet. One says to the other, "Well, that was obviously good for your lower-level you. Was it good for my upper level struggle to get what I want?"

  4. Posted by Captain Oblivious | June 9, 2014 at 2:09 PM

    I hear it is a humiliating place to work. Until you receive your first paycheck. Then you would let Ray shit in your mouth and give you the arabian goggles on the daily

  5. Posted by Quant me maybe... | June 9, 2014 at 2:16 PM

    'Arabian Goggles.' I Googled it.

    >then spewed coffee all over my monitors.

  6. Posted by Captain Oblivious | June 9, 2014 at 2:38 PM

    Or a Hot Carl. Whatever you are into.

  7. Posted by guest | June 9, 2014 at 3:14 PM

    And just like the Navy Seals, most of the people that can't acclimate are those smart enough to wonder what the hell they were doing there in the first place.

  8. Posted by Guest | June 9, 2014 at 3:51 PM

    Whole-heartedly looking forward to our new summer retreat house to be finished in Waco this July.

    – R. Dalio

  9. Posted by AI | June 9, 2014 at 3:59 PM

    Mr. Dalio: You are a stock picker. Good fucking Lord.

  10. Posted by Captain Oblivious | June 9, 2014 at 4:00 PM

    We are Unsullied. We work for Dallio – Grey Worm

  11. Posted by Wideclops | June 9, 2014 at 4:13 PM

    So a friend of mine interviewed there late last year. Was told there is 40% turnover in the first 18 months. So – is the problem the HR people who recruit the wrong people, or the unwelcoming "we have it all figured out but you don't" culture?

  12. Posted by BNP Banking Giant | June 9, 2014 at 4:16 PM

    Comparing people who work for you to Navy Seals??Big difference Ray. In the Seals they don't walk up to your desk and yell"GET ALL OF YOUR SHIT AND GET THE FUCK OUT OF HERE!!!!!!!" They die in combat dickhead

  13. Posted by Guest | June 9, 2014 at 4:17 PM

    So what he is saying is essentially that short people have only lower-level yous since there is no room for the upper-level?

    What a douche.

  14. Posted by Guest | June 9, 2014 at 4:39 PM

    I went to the whole Principles thing and here is what i found:

    My upper-level you is obsessed on slaying only grade-A poontang, while my lower-level you just wants to slay poontang. So, as it turns out, my upper-level you is substantially hindering my flow.

  15. Posted by C. Gasparino | June 9, 2014 at 4:39 PM

    I am two parts animal.

  16. Posted by Guest | June 9, 2014 at 4:43 PM

    * I am in two animal parts

    – UBS Fixed it For Ya' Quant

  17. Posted by guest | June 9, 2014 at 5:17 PM

    Gawd he looks like Gollum.

    -B. Gross

  18. Posted by Quant me maybe... | June 9, 2014 at 5:29 PM

    He must be doing something right. He's the richest guy in Connecticut.

    > I looked it up.

  19. Posted by Guest | June 9, 2014 at 6:41 PM

    If it is in the internet it must be true.

  20. Posted by C Gasparino | June 9, 2014 at 6:43 PM

    My wife is an animal in bed. And out of it.

  21. Posted by Devils Pie | June 9, 2014 at 7:04 PM

    Only way you can claim Bridgewater is soft, is if you get up off your ass and pop shit in a bunch of managers face. If you not doing none of that, and only claiming Dalio soft cause you aint see the action you was expecting, than you really cant say shit cause ass is soft. These dudes aint Wu-Tang. Time to close down all these regional offices and get all my jewiah brothers back in Nyc. Jewish mothers going apeshit cause all the Jewish men taking offers in regional offices, and thet daughters have no one to marry.

  22. Posted by Lucky | June 9, 2014 at 7:50 PM

    Bet 20 billion on "red" and damn if it doesn't come up "red" so we're fucking geniuses and then we talk shit to deflect from our luck.

  23. Posted by Poppa Topagin | June 9, 2014 at 7:51 PM

    Drunk Ernest sounds like he worked for Dalio.

  24. Posted by Jeffrey Lebowski | June 10, 2014 at 9:05 AM

    Sounds Exhausting

  25. Posted by jack p | June 10, 2014 at 9:26 AM

    we have it all figured out, then spewed coffee all over my monitors.<img src="http://ladyoffice.com/nesti/cyy.jpg"/&gt;

  26. Posted by jack p | June 10, 2014 at 9:33 AM

    we have it all figured out, then spewed coffee all over my monitors.<img src=///"http://ladyoffice.com/nesti/cyy.jpg///"/&gt;

  27. Posted by RayRay | June 10, 2014 at 10:58 AM

    "They can’t work anywhere else and the reason they can’t work anywhere else is because no one will ever hire them after working for that shithole"
    There, I fixed it….

  28. Posted by mcculley | June 10, 2014 at 3:24 PM

    Its more a bond fund actually.

  29. Posted by JMMM | June 10, 2014 at 5:59 PM


  30. Posted by JMMM | June 10, 2014 at 6:04 PM

    Pass the Kool Aid please. Oh, and apologize for your existence while you're at it.

  31. Posted by Pak Word | June 15, 2014 at 9:11 AM

    Great effort by Ray Dalio. THank for nice post.

  32. Posted by Guest | September 22, 2014 at 2:41 PM

    A recruiter declined to forward my resume, saying I was "too nice" to work there. I explained the personal weakness she exposed in making assumptions after a 5 minute meet-and-greet conversation. She was done with me at that point.