Do whatever to produce results but they have to be consistent with our core values

by Nguyen Thi Minh Giang, Director of Talent and Culture, Mekong Capital

Betsye Moon (left) and Nguyen Thi Minh Giang (right)
Betsye Moon (left) and Nguyen Thi Minh Giang (right)

I started working at Mekong Capital in 2010. During the first working days, I was so excited to be asked to be involved in many projects because I wanted to quickly prove myself. In these early days, I was assigned to organize a Children’s Event with the intended outcome “Make it as much fun as possible” and we would do it by ourselves.

I had experiences in organizing events when I worked at the previous company but I still wanted to make it perfect and give a good first impression. Given Mekong Capital is a well-known firm in the market, I thought “Hmmm.. Instead of generating the ideas by myself, I can ask some Event Agencies to send me some proposals, I don’t need to use their services later, but I can copy their ideas from their proposals …no one will know my plan”. I contacted some agencies and while waiting for their feedback, I was excited to share this initiative with my mentor — Betsye in our weekly meeting. After listening, she was very upset about my “techniques” and talked to me “Minh Giang, we can do whatever to produce results but the results need to be consistent with our core values. I don’t accept a mentee who tells lies like this.

I was very shocked by her reaction and then actually embarrassed about my behavior. I had allowed my eagerness to impress overshadow one of Mekong’s and my own values. I called and apologized those people and shared authentically how sorry I was and that we didn’t have any intention to work with third parties at this stage and there was no need to send the proposals.

What I learnt from Betsye and that experience was the true meaning of one of our core values, Resultership, which means “Holding ourselves and others accountable to organize around results and do whatever necessary to produce results, but always in a way that is consistent with our core value.

Every day we will be faced with what actions we need to take to produce results. By sharing this with you, I hope you see that it should never be at the expense of our values. I am sharing the lesson I learnt with you as I want to encourage you that when you want to produce results …whatever it takes, to pause for a second and ask “Is what I am doing consistent with our values?