The Power of Holding On: Investing and Building a Positive Work Culture

Alessio Frateily

Hatched by Alessio Frateily

Oct 04, 2023

3 min read


The Power of Holding On: Investing and Building a Positive Work Culture


In both the world of investing and the corporate environment, there are valuable lessons to be learned about the benefits of holding on. Embracing a long-term perspective can lead to greater wealth accumulation and the cultivation of a positive work culture. This article will explore the common points between these two realms and provide actionable advice for individuals and organizations to thrive.

Investing: Just Keep Buying

In the world of investing, the mantra "Just Keep Buying" holds true. The only time one should consider selling investments is for rebalancing or retirement purposes. By holding on to assets and continuously acquiring more, individuals can maximize their future wealth. This approach aligns with the purpose of capitalism, which is to acquire capital and generate long-term financial growth.

The P/E Ratio and Long-Term Returns

A crucial factor to consider in investing is the price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio. This ratio measures how expensive a stock is relative to its current earnings. Interestingly, there is a negative relationship between the P/E ratio and future real returns. As stocks become more expensive, the expected real returns decrease. However, over longer periods of time, the negative returns gradually disappear, and positive real returns become more prevalent. This highlights the importance of holding investments for extended periods to reap the benefits of long-term growth.

Building a Positive Work Culture: The Pitfalls of Performance Reviews

Performance reviews are designed to motivate employees and enhance their performance. However, they often do the opposite, creating a toxic environment that rewards poor behavior. Forced rankings, a common aspect of performance reviews, fail to consider individual rates of improvement. We all start from different points and progress at different rates. Moreover, forced rankings foster unhealthy competition among colleagues, leading to a cutthroat atmosphere where success for one person means failure for another.

The Importance of Trust and Collaboration

Margaret Heffernan, author and former CEO, stresses the significance of trust and collaboration in fostering a successful organization. The premise of organizational life is that together, people can achieve more than they can in isolation. However, this only works when individuals feel safe, trust each other, and genuinely want to help one another. Distrust, rivalry, and lack of understanding impede the flow of collaboration and hinder organizational success.

Shifting Focus to Personal Growth and Development

Comparing ourselves to others is a common tendency, but it often leads to dissatisfaction and misery. Instead, we should focus on the gap between our current abilities and our potential. Both individuals and organizations should prioritize internal motivation, driven by the satisfaction derived from personal growth and achievements. Grading performances should be based on progress and learning rather than pitting individuals against each other. When people are empowered to help and learn from one another, the organization benefits from a diverse range of skills and a culture that fosters continuous improvement.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Embrace a long-term perspective in investing. Continuously acquire assets and resist the urge to sell unless it aligns with rebalancing or retirement goals.
  • 2. Reconsider the approach to performance reviews. Shift the focus from forced rankings to individual growth and improvement. Evaluate progress against personal milestones rather than comparing individuals against each other.
  • 3. Foster a culture of trust and collaboration within the organization. Encourage employees to support and learn from one another, tapping into the untapped resource of diverse skills and knowledge.


By applying the principles of holding on and nurturing positive work cultures, individuals and organizations can achieve long-term success. Whether it is in the realm of investing or fostering productive teamwork, the benefits of embracing a long-term perspective and prioritizing collaboration cannot be overstated. Let us strive to build wealth and cultivate thriving work environments by keeping our eyes on the future and supporting one another's growth.

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