Building the Investment Profession and Ethical Cultures in Organizations

Contributed by: Vivek Yadav and Hareesh Mothi, CFA

Interaction with IAIP Bangalore Paul Smith, The President and the CEO of the CFA Institute commenced his Bangalore trip with a casual discussion with a few members and IAIP volunteers over a Luncheon on the 19th April 2015. The CFA Institute’s India Office was represented by Vidhu Shekhar, Amit Chakrobarty and Arati Porwal. This opportunity created a conducive environment to know, interact and network with representatives of both the organizations – the IAIP and CFA Institute.  

Building an ethical culture in Organizations: Aligning People & Values The CFA Institute in collaboration with People Matters invited about twenty leaders of the Human Resource Function and other related Functions for a breakfast roundtable at The Leela Palace, Bangalore on the 20th April 2015. A few IAIP volunteers from Mumbai & Bangalore were invited to participate in the event. The hosts of the event were:

  • Paul Smith, the President and CEO, CFAI & Vidhu Shekhar, Country Head, CFAI
  • Ester Martinez, CEO and Editor-in-Chief, People Matters Media

Most delegates found the topic of discussion “Building an ethical culture in organizations: Aligning people and values” the need of the hour especially given that ethics, in today’s world, is not a common and a comfortable topic in most organizations. The delegates raised critical real-life questions that they consider subjective and challenging to find practical answers. Topics such as importance of ethics from cultural perspective, how do organization live their values, how do organizations measure / recognize ethical behavior depicted by employees, and how do we inculcate ethics in the younger generation who join the organization were among the more actively discussed ones. The 100-minute long engaging deliberation brought to light organization-wide best practices, perspectives and corporate success stories to the benefit of all. The delegates appreciate the efforts taken by CFAI and People Matters to meet on a Monday morning on rather a rare but important topic of discussion and hope to take back some of their learnings to their organization.

Building an Investment Profession in India Paul spent the afternoon of the 20th at the prestigious Indian Institute of Management – Bangalore, sharing the vision of the CFA Institute and interacting with students, faculty and alumni. He provided unique insights into the trends of the Investment Management Industry from the world over and showcased what forces were shaping the future of the Industry. Paul highlighted that Investment Management has its own set of problems in developing and developed market. To address these concerns, the CFA Institute has established its presence in Mumbai, India catalyze the growth of the Investment Profession. He opined that India is a country, which is young in its growth cycle, hungry for capital and knowledge and has a strong foundation to grow. Paul believes that the opportunity for CFA Charterholders in India is enormous. The past decade has seen an Exponential growth in the number of CFA Charter holders in India – A number that’s increased from 50 to about 1500. More importantly, India has about 20,000 CFA candidates, hosting the third largest candidate base in the world after USA and China. Paul emphasized that the profession is never complete unless it serves a societal need. In his view, a successful Investment Manager is one who balances among technical expertize, core competence and experience. In India, passive Investment strategies are in vogue because clients feel the fees charged by the investment managers to manage the active investment are not justified. He recommended that investment professionals should take the client’s investment needs seriously, work towards serving a societal needs, and focus on building an industry for the ultimate benefit of all. Paul also touched upon other interesting topics including why growth of the Assets Under Management (AUM) in Asia has currently outpaced the other continents, changing regulatory perspective towards asset management business and challenges posed by the rapid changes in technology. The session was wrapped up with Paul emphasizing on setting the highest standard setting in the Investment Community. He emphasized that if India wants a continuous path towards prosperity then it really needs a proper functioning Investment Management

– HM

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