The culture at TCW Group Inc., Los Angeles, has changed.
“We all work for one firm,” said TCW President and CEO David Lippman. In the past, he said, investment teams did not share a common vision of a united TCW, instead viewing the money manager as a collection of boutiques.
“TCW was established in 1971,” said Mr. Lippman. “Pretty much the only thing that has remained the same is the name.”
Mr. Lippman took the top spot at TCW in 2012, after a bruising trial that put the firm in the media spotlight as it battled former Chief Investment Officer Jeffrey Gundlach.
Mr. Lippman has been quick to implement changes in several areas, including pushing personnel on different investment teams to work together, opening the company's executive dining room to all employees, and introducing juicing — blending ingredients like kale, Swiss chard, ginger, beets, cucumbers and celery — after he found such shakes gave him “an energy and clarity boost.”
As part of the team environment, Mr. Lippman and other top managers maintain an open-door policy, encouraging employee input, a clear reminder that the old silo culture is dead.
Employees commenting in a Best Places to Work survey cited the teamwork as a positive of working for the firm. “TCW strikes a great balance of being performance-driven/meritocratic, but also team oriented,” said one.
“Management is open and direct,” said another employee.
Mr. Lippman said employees work hard and are driven to produce top results, but he wants them to have a “balanced life.” Toward that end, TCW is partnering with a local health club to sponsor wellness seminars on such topics as stress management, said Cheryl Marzano, a TCW managing director and head of human resources.
She said the company is also looking at how to make employees' lives easier. One example: chartering a bus for employees to get to a study group for the Chartered Financial Analyst exam that was several miles from the firm.
There is also an annual summer picnic, a year-end holiday party for employees and another for children of TCW employees with characters, decorations, games, food and goodie bags.