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Ray Dalio’s Former Assistant, The Devil Wears Prada?

Had I known that my ‘little known blog’ on Ray Dalio would be picked up by Kevin Roose and included in this provocatively titled NY Times article, I would have said so much more… The Devil Wears Prada reference he made was not the point…but obviously mainstream enough to go viral.

Then this morning I got another potential opportunity when I was contacted by Juliet Chung of the Wall Street Journal. An article will not result from my interview with her, I can only assume because I refused to share anything ‘juicy’, so I’m taking the chance that my recent spike in SEO (thanks to good-old Kevin Roose) is still sufficient to get my words out there.

Kevin’s article about my blog was a nice spin on the current buzz surrounding Ray. Now here is my spin:

It was largely due to inauthentic leadership that the economy has suffered so terribly. Is it possible that Ray Dalio has the knowledge, wisdom and charisma to help get it back on track?

Ego based leaders make decisions based on fear, competition and control. Authentic leaders trust their intuition and are not afraid to make mistakes. This dichotomy is the basis of all political, financial, governmental, and familial battles. Visionaries like Ray Dalio can see past the fear, to success. They focus on the opportunities that exist within the chaos. They don’t merely focus on what isn’t working, but what is. I don’t claim to know much about finance, but I know about leadership, and Ray Dalio inspired me to focus my career on it. Regardless of whether or not he turns out to be another Bernie Madoff, I can only speak of my personal experience with the man. I’d rather see the best in someone and be wrong, than see the worst and be right.

I sent the following email to my contacts yesterday, and think it is worth sharing in this space:

Dear Clients:

It’s not every day that an event glaringly mimics your company creed (or tagline). Yesterday was one of these days, and one of my proudest & most humbling moments as the Founder of Raleigh Coaching, LLC.

Last July I sat down, and from my heart composed a blog about my experience working for my former boss Ray Dalio in 2004, a pivotal moment in my career and life.

Then, last month Ray was voted the most successful hedge fund manager in history. In essence, he is considered a legend in the global financial industry, a 21st Century ‘financial prophet’ of sorts. Someone who will likely be written about in future economics curricula. For me (someone who admittedly glosses over whenever people talk investments), Ray is the catalyst who sparked the fire in me to eventually start my Authentic Leadership Coaching practice.

My blog (found here) was picked up by the NY Times yesterday and became ‘the meat’ of (this article) on the lasting impact of Ray’s authentic leadership. The reporter clearly got creative with the title to draw attention.

So why am I sending this email?

My intention is to:

Show proof that when you boldly brand yourself authentically, people notice
Remind you that when you speak, write or blog authentically (from the heart), people listen
Reinforce that all the connections you make throughout your life impact you in some way, regardless of how fleeting
Invite you to consider how your words (or lack thereof) are impacting the world around you, positively or negatively

I’ll leave you with a thought that popped into my head the other day,

When what you ‘do for a living’ goes from being a means to earn an income, to an absolute moral imperative, you have found your life’s calling.”

Lastly, this is not about me and the ‘crazy things’ I did when I worked for Ray, it’s about how Ray helped inspire me to hedge my positive energy into a life and career dedicated to impacting positive change exponentially.

If you were hoping for something more scandalous, my sincerest apologies…

Authentically Yours,
Kathleen


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