The CD Way
From the beginning, we’ve wanted Capital Directions to be different from other firms.
Different in how we treat our clients, different in how we work with each other, and different in the results we achieve.
These differences are best captured in the 30 “Fundamentals” that are the foundation for our unique culture. We call it: The CD Way
1. DO THE RIGHT THING, ALWAYS.
Demonstrate an unwavering commitment to doing the right thing in every action you take and in every decision you make, especially when no one’s looking. Always tell the truth, no matter the consequences. If you make a mistake, own up to it, apologize, and make it right.
2. PRACTICE BLAMELESS PROBLEM-SOLVING.
Demonstrate a relentless solution focus, rather than pointing fingers or dwelling on problems. Identify lessons learned and use those lessons to improve ourselves and our processes so we don’t make the same mistake twice. Get smarter with every mistake. Learn from every experience.
3. MAKE QUALITY PERSONAL.
Demonstrate a passion for excellence and take pride in the quality of everything you touch and everything you do. Have a healthy dislike for mediocrity. Good is not good enough. Always ask yourself, “Is this my best work?”
4. HONOR COMMITMENTS.
Do what you say you’re going to do, when you say you’re going to do it. This includes being on time for all phone calls, appointments, and meetings. If a commitment can’t be fulfilled, notify others early and agree on a new deliverable to be honored.
5. GET CLEAR ON EXPECTATIONS.
Create clarity and avoid misunderstandings by discussing expectations upfront. Set expectations for others and ask when you’re not clear on what they expect of you. End all meetings with clarity about action items, responsibilities, and due dates.
6. BE PROCESS-DRIVEN.
Create systems and processes that support our ability to perform with consistency. Strong processes are the foundation of organizational effectiveness.
7. LISTEN TO UNDERSTAND.
Listening is more than simply “not speaking.” Give others your undivided attention. Be present and engaged. Minimize the distractions and let go of the need to agree or disagree. Suspend your judgment and be curious to know more, rather than jumping to conclusions.
8. SPEAK STRAIGHT.
Speak honestly in a way that helps to make progress. Say what you mean, and be willing to ask questions, share ideas, or raise issues that may cause conflict when it’s necessary for team success. Be courageous enough to say what needs to be said. Address issues directly with those who are involved or affected.
9. FIND A WAY.
Take personal responsibility for making things happen. Respond to every situation by looking for how we can do it, rather than explaining why it can’t be done. Be resourceful and show initiative. Don’t make excuses or wait for others to solve the problem. See issues through to their completion.
10. SHOW MEANINGFUL APPRECIATION.
Recognize people doing things right, rather than pointing out when they do things wrong. Regularly extend meaningful acknowledgment and appreciation — in all directions throughout our organization.
11. BE A FANATIC ABOUT RESPONSE TIME.
Respond to questions and concerns quickly, whether it’s in person, on the phone, or by e-mail. This includes simply acknowledging that we got the question and we’re “on it,” as well as keeping those involved continuously updated on the status of outstanding issues.
12. SHARE INFORMATION.
With appropriate respect for confidentiality, share information freely throughout our organization. The more people know, the better we can collaborate. Learn to ask yourself, “Who else needs to know this?”
13. DELIVER LEGENDARY SERVICE.
It’s all about the experience. With every experience, do the little things, as well as the big things, that surprise people. Make every interaction stand out for its helpfulness. Create the “WOW” factor that turns customers into raving fans. This includes both internal and external customers.
14. THINK TEAM FIRST.
It’s not about you. Don’t let your ego or personal agenda get in the way of doing what’s best for the team. Be there for each other and be willing to step into another role or help a co-worker when that’s what’s required for success. Help each other to succeed.
15. BE RELENTLESS ABOUT IMPROVEMENT.
Regularly evaluate the way you/we work to find ways to improve. Don’t be satisfied with the status quo. “Because we’ve always done it that way” is not a reason. Guard against complacency. Find ways to get things done better, faster, and more efficiently.
16. BE A LIFELONG LEARNER.
Seek out and take advantage of every opportunity to gain more knowledge, to increase your skills, and to become a greater expert. Be resourceful about learning and sharing best practices.
17. EMBRACE CHANGE AND GROWTH.
What got us here is not the same as what will get us to the next level. Get outside your comfort zone, rather than stubbornly hanging on to old ways of doing things. Be excited by the possibilities that change and growth bring. Be flexible.
18. BE CURIOUS.
In the search for the best solutions, challenge and question what you don’t understand. Don’t accept anything at “face value” if it doesn’t make sense to you. Be curious, ask thoughtful questions, and listen intently to the answers. Dig deeper to go beyond the expected. Ask the extra question.
19. LOOK AHEAD AND ANTICIPATE.
Solve problems before they happen by anticipating future issues, planning for contingencies, and addressing them in advance. Work with appropriate lead times. Preventing issues is always better than fixing them.
20. DO WHAT’S BEST FOR THE CLIENT.
In all situations, do what’s best for the client, even if it’s to our own short-term detriment. Put their needs ahead of our own. There’s no greater way to build a reputation than to steadfastly do what’s right for others. Every day.
21. TAKE OWNERSHIP.
Take personal responsibility for making things happen. It’s never someone else’s job or someone else’s fault. Be resourceful and show initiative. If you see it, own it, and make sure it gets done. Don’t make excuses.
22. CREATE A GREAT IMPRESSION.
Every conversation, phone call, e-mail, letter, and even voicemail, sets a tone and creates an impression. Pay attention to every interaction and be sure you’re setting a tone that’s friendly, warm, and helpful.
23. COMMUNICATE TO BE UNDERSTOOD.
Know your audience. Write and speak in a way that they can understand. Avoid using internal lingo, acronyms, and industry jargon. Use the simplest possible explanations.
24. WORK SMART.
Be organized and plan your work for maximum efficiency. Have all the tools necessary before starting your work. Look ahead and be thoughtful about your schedule. Have a game plan for your calls, your tasks, and your workday. Know the priorities and work on them first.
25. BE POSITIVE.
You have the power to choose your attitude. Choose to be joyful, optimistic, and enthusiastic. See the good in others. Your attitude is contagious. Spread optimism and positive energy.
26. BE EASY TO WORK WITH.
Find ways to make working with you/us easier. Provide simple and complete instructions. When in doubt, do more rather than pushing the work back to them. Streamline our processes. Simplify everything. Be ridiculously helpful.
27. INVEST IN RELATIONSHIPS.
Get to know your clients and co-workers on a more personal level. Talk more and e-mail less. Understand what makes others tick and what’s important to them. Strong relationships enable us to more successfully work through difficult issues and challenging times.
Share information and work together. Collaborate internally and with our clients and partners to find better solutions. Collaboration generates better ideas than does working alone. Be inclusive.
29. USE BEST PRACTICES.
Follow our operating procedures to ensure consistency and high performance. When you see opportunities for process improvement, recommend them so that new and better standards can be established for the benefit of everyone.
30. KEEP THINGS FUN.
While our passion for excellence is real, remember that the world has bigger problems than the daily challenges that make up our work. Stuff happens. Keep perspective. Don’t take things personally or take yourself too seriously. Laugh every day.