Practical analysis for investment professionals
20 March 2015

Weekend Reads for Finance Pros: Fiduciary Protection, Mindfulness, and Courage

Posted In: Weekend Reads

Every now and then I come across something so good, I immediately scribble it (or type it) down lest I forget. That’s what happened when I shared a quote about courage with some of my colleagues, including Jason Voss, CFA. It turns out he knows a thing or two about the topic: Courage is one of the seven essential behaviors he writes about in his book The Intuitive InvestorVoss told me his favorite quote about courage comes from the movie Three Kings. The scene is just prior to the characters going into battle to rescue a captured comrade:

Conrad Vig (CV): Wait, hold on a minute, I wanna go over this plan one more time.

Archie Gates (AG): You’re scared, right?

CV: Maybe.

AG: The way this works is, you do the thing you’re scared sh*tless of, and you get the courage after you do it. Not before you do it.

CV: That’s a dumb-ass way to work. It should be the other way around.

AG: I know, [but] that’s the way it works.

Why is this his favorite quote?

“Many people think they lack courage to make a decision,” he told me. “It is as if mentally they do a check on the ‘amount of courage’ in their ‘courage fuel tank.’ If something seems scary, then they don’t do it and they say, ‘I don’t have courage.’ The quote rightly highlights that courage is choosing to act in the face of anxiety.”

So true.

So readers, go forth, and be courageous.

Financial Advice

Work Culture and Gender Diversity

  • On meetings:

 

And Now For Something Completely Different

  • I’m a grammar pedant. Which is why I love lists like this: “20 Embarrassing Phrases Even Smart People Misuse” (Inc.)
  • Jason Zweig of The Wall Street Journal found an amazing print from 1899 titled “The Fool and His Money.” The more things change, the more they stay the same:

  • The Church of TED” (The New Yorker)
  • A moving essay by by Paul Kalanithi, then aged 36 and chief resident in neurological surgery at Stanford University, on confronting a diagnosis of metastic lung cancer: “How Long Have I Got Left?” (New York Times)
  • I first came across University of Houston professor Brené Brown when I watched her popular 2010 TED talk, “The Power of Vulnerability.” Last week I stumbled upon a 2012 interview with Brown about her book, Daring Greatly. There are lots of nuggets of wisdom in “Exhaustion Is Not a Status Symbol,” including this observation: “‘Crazy-busy’ is a great armor, it’s a great way for numbing. What a lot of us do is that we stay so busy, and so out in front of our life, that the truth of how we’re feeling and what we really need can’t catch up with us.” It takes courage to take a step back and take off the armor.

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All posts are the opinion of the author. As such, they should not be construed as investment advice, nor do the opinions expressed necessarily reflect the views of CFA Institute or the author’s employer.

Image credit: ©iStockPhoto.com/temmuzcan

About the Author(s)
Lauren Foster

Lauren Foster is a content director on the professional learning team at CFA Institute and host of the Take 15 Podcast. She is the former managing editor of Enterprising Investor and co-lead of CFA Institute’s Women in Investment Management initiative. Lauren spent nearly a decade on staff at the Financial Times as a reporter and editor based in the New York bureau, followed by freelance writing for Barron’s and the FT. Lauren holds a BA in political science from the University of Cape Town, and an MS in journalism from Columbia University.

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