Please rotate your device.

Our website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience while you’re here.


BOS: Trust and Purpose

By: Erin Sullivan

Close up view of young business people putting their hands together

I love working at SEI; I’ve been here for almost 10 years now. Our company is about to celebrate its 25th anniversary, an amazing accomplishment for a boutique, locally focused, employee-owned consulting firm. Even more amazing, the core values which our founder built this great company on continue to fuel the fire that runs our business today. Contrary to the typical life cycle of culture being one of the first casualties of a growing company, the strengthening of our culture is integral to our growth!

As Jason mentioned in his post: it’s all about the people! I run the Boston office, which has some unique characteristics that set us apart from the rest of the firm. For example:

  • We root for championship teams and believe Tom Brady is innocent – it’s basic science!
  • Everyone thinks we talk funny, but none of us understand why.
  • We dominate in bar and tailgate sports (pool, darts, corn hole, etc.); though I expect the teams in our other offices would offer a contrarian view.

However, what’s best about SEI is the fact that by design we can be different in some ways, but we share the most important threads with all our brothers and sisters across all our offices.

  • We know each one of us is an important piece in the puzzle of forming rock star, high functioning, and self-starting team. What we do every day matters and has a measurable impact to the success of the company; whether it’s delivery, sales, or recruiting.
  • We work hard every day to make sure that our environment is one of trust. We watch out for each other, pick each other up when one of us stumbles, and drop whatever we’re doing when someone needs our help.
  • None of us are Wonder Woman or Superman. We all have our own strengths and our own weaknesses. However, we collectively fill in the gaps in each other’s weaknesses. General Stan McChrystal said it best in his book, Team of Teams: “processes that create the trust and common purpose that bond great small teams, dispel the fallacy that it takes supermen (and/or superwomen) to forge super teams”. We all are able, and expected, to contribute to the success of our company in our own way, to the best of our ability.

Best part is – IT WORKS! As a result of continuous investment in our people and our culture, we enjoy deep relationships with our clients as trusted partners. We’ve thrived over the 25 years we’ve been in business by sticking to our core fundamentals. We have a culture of which we’re exceedingly proud and one that we protect like the gold in Fort Knox!

However as Marshall Goldsmith has noted, we know that what has driven our current success does not guarantee our future. We’re always learning and growing, and would love to hear from you! What do you love about where you work? What does it take to create and sustain a strong culture and an environment of trust? We’d love to hear from you.

Erin Sullivan

Managing Director

More posts from this author