Arrowpoint Partners was founded in 2007 as a collaborative partnership. “One phrase that I cannot accept is "I work for him.' You work with me and we work for our clients,” said David Corkins, co-founder, principal and portfolio manager.
Arrowpoint's culture is centered on this team approach. “We like cross-coverage and cross-training. We focus less on titles and more on teamwork,” said Jill Jepson, ambassador of culture. The floor plan, which is designed to encourage collaboration, has limited private space and blends together diverse roles and departments. Sitting in the midst of other teams and projects “facilitates idea exchange and provides exposure to the efforts of your peers, which makes for a very cohesive culture,” Clayton Freeman, research analyst, said in an e-mail.
Work-life balance is another vital ingredient at Arrowpoint. Originally called the “inspiration wall” but currently called the “family wall,” a large space is dedicated to family photos and other images chosen by employees. Ms. Jepson said building the wall into the office layout was critical. “Family is important to us. We like it near high traffic so it's near our conference rooms, the public ones,” she said.
Arrowpoint, which currently employs 37 people, is 100% employee owned. The firm has more than $7 billion in assets under management invested across a range of strategies, but Mr. Corkins believes Arrowpoint's most valuable assets are the employees. “People ask, "What's your AUM?' It's 37 people,” he said.
To celebrate its people, Arrowpoint's “fun committee” holds gatherings in the “fun room” to recognize work-related accomplishments and to observe significant life events, including birthdays, marriages and new additions to families.
To thank their families for ongoing support, the staff travels with their families from Arrowpoint's headquarters in Denver to participate together in Camp Pendleton's annual “mud run” in Southern California. “We're all driven. We're all focused. We're working hard but we really have fun together. We laugh a lot,” said Ms. Jepson.
To maintain its culture of collegiality, the firm has a lengthy recruiting process before hiring each new employee. Mr. Corkins said a single hire could take longer than a year. “You don't really get to know someone in one hour across a desk,” he said in describing an evaluation process that looks at compatibility more stringently than professional accomplishments.
In commenting in the employee survey for Best Places to Work in Money Management, one employee said: “In addition to skill set, cultural fit seems to play a big role in hiring decisions. I appreciate that.”