Meet Alida Mogollon! Alida is based in Orlando, FL and spent the summer working as our intern. She is a student at the University of Central Florida, where she will graduate this coming year with a bachelor’s degree in business. Read our Q&A with her, find out her favorite podcast episode, and what she learned from sitting in important meetings with our team.
What are some things you learned during your time with HIG?
Although I have always been interested in wealth management, my investment knowledge before joining Hill Investment Group came mostly from flashy internet or TV stock-pickers. In my time here, I have learned something that all HIG employees preach – it is almost impossible to consistently select individual stocks for long-term outperformance consistently. It is more valuable to invest in the global market and exercise patience, or, to take the long view! When I am ready to invest my own funds, I will be taking into account the investment philosophy I learned throughout my internship.
In your own words, what do you think is unique about working at HIG?
Many previous jobs have been for large corporations, where concerns are merely passed along the chain of command. HIG is the opposite. During my time here, I saw constant collaboration. There is a level of mutual trust and respect which inspires every team member to want the best for the company, and leadership gives them the freedom to act accordingly. I am inspired to find a workplace like this for my future career.
What is your favorite podcast episode of Take the Long View Podcast?
Matt raved about his podcast with Dr. Robert Cloninger, and I understand why! It is interesting how Dr. Cloninger’s studies on personality dovetail with many of the behavioral finance ideas we talk about at Hill Investment Group. Dr. Clonginger does a great job highlighting why taking the long view is essential for your happiness.
What will you miss about working with the team at HIG?
The team! Every person showed me so much kindness throughout the summer. I had the opportunity to work on as varied a list of projects as possible. The whole team was supportive of my learning and encouraged me to ask as many questions as I could dream up. They also led me to discover my unique skills through the work that I was able to do for HIG.
This week we celebrated Abby Crimmins’ second year with HIG and Scott Krajacic’s first. Abby, a huge asset to our team, has taken the reins from John Reagan and now leads the Client Service team. Millennials often get a bad rep for being lazy – but Abby continues to disprove that stereotype every day. Her standard of excellence, can-do attitude, and friendly demeanor have quickly earned the trust of our clients and her teammates alike. Scott is the leader of our Investment Policy Committee and by far the most in-shape member of our team! He has helped improve client relationships by providing clarity to complex questions through technical analysis.
In addition to celebrating anniversaries, we also said farewell to our summer intern, William Bartnett. He was a natural fit on the team and a positive energy source. We immerse our interns in important projects, gaining from their fresh perspective and ideas. William described his experience as “being surrounded by positive focus, growth mindset, and relentless agitation towards excellence.” William gifted our team a signed copy of William Danforth’s I Dare You for our HIG book collection. A quote from Danforth’s book: “I dare you, whoever you are, to share with others the fruits of your daring. Catch a passion for helping others, and a richer life will come back to you.” William will be missed.
This summer we were privileged to work with a young man named Dominic. He was a huge help around the office and we miss having him here! Below you can read about his experience in his own words:
I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t reluctant to join Hill Investment Group for a summer internship. My background is in public relations, media studies, and writing. I’m not even part of the Business School at Xavier University where I’m entering my junior year. In fact, finance and investing were nowhere to be found on my radar until Rick Hill walked me through a Monte Carlo Simulation during my first week at the office.
But what I found most valuable about my time at Hill Investment Group wasn’t my indirect personal finance lessons from Rick nor the investment lingo that I picked up from John Reagan. As I talk with other college students, I can’t help but notice how ego shapes their opinions about work, specifically internships. So often, the main concern is the title of the position or what type of tasks they’ll be assigned. What I’ve discovered is that valuing learning and opportunity over credit and titles opens the most doors. This was confirmed during my time at Hill.
Instead of looking at this internship as something on top of everything else in my life, I found instead that it complimented aspects of my life that I never thought possible. Because of HIG, I was able to apply the skills I’ve cultivated to a real, professional business. In addition, the HIG team taught me what it means to run a client-centered operation. They instilled in me the value of connecting to clients on a personal level – knowing the names of their kids and where they go to school, asking about family vacations, etc. Such an environment inspired me to implement the same approach into my personal life, as well as my future career.
Hill Investment Group oozes trust and confidence. I sensed this beginning with my first email exchange with John all the way through my last day when I wrote the post you’re reading right now.
As I spent more time with the team, I couldn’t help but notice that the reasons I was drawn to HIG were the same reasons I was drawn to Xavier University: a small group of loyal, purposeful individuals, maximized attention to detail, and a simplified approach to solving problems. But perhaps the most striking feature of HIG is its transparency.
I’ve heard office horror stories warning newbies to keep quiet and never interrupt “the boss.” Such a culture is nonexistent at HIG. Because team communication is so greatly emphasized, it wasn’t rare for a work project discussion to digress into a personal, real-life story. If you don’t think that’s possible or efficient, read Matt’s book Odds On: The Making of an Evidence-Based Investor.
The opportunity to work with HIG was unexpected to say the least, but oddly, it’s the unexpected things that prove to be the most valuable down the road. I don’t know where I’ll be in one, ten, or twenty years, but the tools that HIG equipped me with have prepared me to take on life with purpose and fortitude.
I’m proud to say that I take the long view.