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Best places to work in money management

TCW Group

David Lippman cut the ribbon for a new reading room at Esperanza Elementary School in Los Angeles; the room was sponsored, designed and built by TCW employees.

First place, money managers with 500 to 999 employees

AUM: $201.6 billion

Employees: 650

If TCW Group Inc. is contemplating adding a motto in honor of being named a Best Places To Work in Money Management by Pensions & Investments for the fourth consecutive year, "learn while you earn" might be a fitting phrase.

One feature cited by executives and employees is the ever-increasing number of courses offered by TCW University, ranging from personal finance matters such as creating a power of attorney and preparing for retirement, to encouraging physical fitness.

"The TCW University has evolved significantly," said David Lippman, chief executive and president, noting it had been in force before he assumed the top job in 2012.

"It used to be a few times a year that various people talked about what they did," Mr. Lippman said. This practice remains, he added, in the spirit of allowing employees in different sections of the company to understand what their peers are doing.

TCW University classes are generally held once a month for one to two hours. Health and fitness and managing stress are among the non-financial subjects.

Most classes are held at the Los Angeles headquarters, which houses about 530 of the firm's 650 employees, but TCW also conducts video conference classes for employees at several other offices.

The company also will pay for courses outside TCW University, such as those for improving presentation skills and leadership development. If an employee studies to become a Chartered Financial Analyst, TCW will pay for the education if the employee passes the exam.

These education efforts promote teamwork, employees say. "The company allows employees to learn other aspects of the company/business/industry outside of their normal course of work," one worker wrote in the BPTW survey.

It also helps that the peripatetic Mr. Lippman often visits with employees. "When our CEO visits the New York City office, I love that he stops by my office and says hi," wrote one staff member.