Black and white portrait of Ray Dalio: Narrator and Creator of Life Principles

Principles are ways of successfully dealing with reality to get what you want out of life.

Ray Dalio, one of the world’s most successful investors and entrepreneurs, cites principles as his key to success.

Work Principle

Train, guardrail, or remove people; don't rehabilitate them.

Training is part of a plan to develop people's skills and help them evolve. Rehabilitation is an attempt to create significant changes in people's values and/or abilities. Since values and abilities are difficult to change, rehabilitation is typically impractical. Since people with inappropriate values and inadequate abilities can have a devastating impact on the organization, they should be fired. If rehabilitation is attempted, it is generally best directed by professionals over extended periods of time.

Remember that if you are expecting people to be much better in the near future than they have been in the past, you are probably making a serious mistake. People who repeatedly operate in a certain way will probably continue to operate that way because that behavior reflects what they're like. Since people generally change slowly, you should expect slow improvement (at best). Instead, you need to change the people or change the design. Since changing the design to accommodate people's weaknesses is generally a bad idea, it is better to sort the people. Sometimes good people "lose their boxes" (they get fired from their role) because they can't evolve into Responsible Parties soon enough. Some of them might be good in another position, in which case they should be reassigned within the company; some of them will not and should leave.

Work Principle

Find a Meaningful Principle for You

Learn to get more of what you want out of life.

Life Principles

Work Principles

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