Today, a great business is constantly innovating and finding a better way to serve their clients. It’s all about the people you hire and the culture you create – that’s the name of the game.
Forex Magnates spoke exclusively with CEO Tim Furey and the rest of the Tradeview team to gather their perspective on the merits and advantages of rugby players in the workforce.
Having forged Tradeview from the ground up it is my experience that a rich culture can make or break your business, and companies with strong traditions routinely outperform their competitors in due course. A company survives over time because of a strong workplace culture and thrives when the team goes the extra mile.
The strength of your team rises and falls by the people you hire. That said there are people with certain personality traits who don’t naturally mesh well with a strong team environment.
Who you don’t want to hire:
The so-called ‘Millennials’ – those who reached young adulthood around the turn of the century, are often problematic in certain workplace cultures. At least that’s what I’ve found. They are the ‘Every One Gets a Trophy’ generation. They grew up with lavish praise, lax discipline, and constant positive reinforcement. It is the generation where everyone was rewarded regardless of performance. In sports or other activities, Millennial children received trophies and medals when they excelled – and often when they didn’t – to avoid damaging their (perceived) delicate self-esteem.
Growing up being babied all their lives, their attitude is ‘what are you going to do for me?’ It’s not necessarily arrogance; their mindset is simply the result of not having learned to fail at something, to know that they are not the best at everything – which they should listen to criticism that it takes dedication and hard work to improve.
Once that’s really locked into the way young people think – and everything in life goes through that filter – by the time they reach the work place it’s a very hard mindset to break. When things get tough, Millennials, more often than not tend to shut down or just quit outright – employees with a sense of entitlement simply don’t have the mental tools to cope with adversity.
Who you do want to hire:
When I’m hiring new employees, I do not necessarily look for people from another brokerage or Forex firm. I just simply want people who are proven winners in life. These individuals need to have been successful in their past ventures, they need to show me that they have worked very hard to achieve success and come with an top college business credentials.
Hiring rugby players has been a big ‘X Factor’ for Tradeview. These people have a proven character, accountability and experience. Rugby players understand the hard work and commitment it takes to make it on the field and they strive to make that happen in the business world.
In the Forex and Equity markets, the demands placed on brokers are much higher than those in other industries. For that you need the best of the best. You need to find people who are talented, natural leaders, hard workers, disciplined, without negativity or a sense of entitlement, people who feel alive in their jobs. People who don’t make excuses. Excuses are fear. In my industry, I need people who are more afraid of not succeeding.
In any business, there are ups and downs. No business grows in a straight line, like a growth chart you might see in an Economics 101 class. Every broker will have down times, every salesperson, dry spells. When it feels like nothing is working, even though you’ve given it your all. When there’s nothing left inside. You’re disappointed, discouraged, defeated.
The people who succeed are the ones who find a way to make it to the next day. The average person quits before ever summoning the strength or determination to achieve this. The rugby player is a trained warrior who finds a way to turn things around and become successful. Running a business takes a lot of energy. You need to have a vision and a reason. It requires energy even when your body’s gone and you’re emotionally gone. You need to find a way to keep it going, and you’re going to need a great team behind you to make it.
I view the Tradeview team as a band of soldiers arriving on an island, taking the hill, storming the city, seizing the treasure, and returning home victorious. I know that might sound very Hollywood and somewhat crass in the financial establishment, but we don’t come to work every day just to hang out and talk about rugby. We come in every day looking to add more value than any other company.
In business you need all eyeballs on you. On the rugby field the same is true. When Game Day is on and the players battle it out for 80 minutes, the winning team and its star players are the ones who have eyes on them. Before that can happen, it’s takes weeks of hard work (practice). During practice you layout the game plan and train hard to be ready to defeat the other team.
Rugby players have been in the spotlight before. They understand the hard work and commitment it takes to make it there. They strive to make that happen in the business world. Perhaps most importantly, they thrive under this spotlight and pressure, and get the job done.
1. How did you ultimately choose Ben, Mike and Rory to come work with Tradeview?
(Tim Furey) I have been playing rugby for a while and decided to move to NYC. I figured I only had a few more Rugby years left and I wanted a shot to play for a Top Rugby Team in the country. I first joined Old Blue Rugby in 2004 and during my first scrimmage I had a 70 meter break away with Ben Sadgrove chasing me down. Now Ben is a very big boy and should have been a Pro NFL linebacker. I figured I could outrun him, however when I looked behind me I felt like the TERMINATOR was chasing me down. No matter how hard I tried I could not out run this big giant cyborg. Next thing I know, this big hand grabbed me and threw me 5 meters. Everyone seemed to know Ben Sadgrove from Australia and he had this Aura about him when he walks into a room everyone notices him or knows him. I figured he could bring that aura into Tradeview and the clients love him so I was right.
Mike and I met a two years later during one of his first games with Old Blue. What I remember the most was we were ahead by a bit and time was running out. Mike went in to tackle the opponent that was carrying the ball and hit the guy like no tomorrow. Then he got up and said to me “did you see that Furey?” and laughed. He was playing as hard during the end of the game as the start. He had this endless energy. Then at the after the game celebration we talked a bit. He just graduated from UConn, had the gift of gab, smart kid, worked harder than anyone I knew on the rugby field and he also knew how to speak Spanish. I wanted to explore the South American Market and brought him in to help with that over 7 years ago.
Rory Collins is the new addition to Tradeview. He is from and played Rugby in Ireland and came over to play with Old Blue in NYC. He has a very accomplished background in trading equities and his timing was perfect because we are starting a new equity trading division and he can bring tremendous value to our clients.
Rugby players comprise the backbone of Tradeview’s personnel. This includes Tradeview’s Mike Murphy (VP and Director Latin America), Ben Sadgrove (VP of Sales), and Rory Collins (Equity Trader). Their exclusive interview can be read in full below.
2. Tim says he specifically hires rugby players to be Forex brokers. Why do you think that is?
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(Mike Murphy) I wouldn’t say it’s a situation where we only hire rugby players at Tradeview. I would rather say it is more of a fact that qualities sought after in a Tradeview broker are often found in rugby players. Qualities like determination, commitment to hard work, being a team player, and being goal focused are all vital traits of a successful rugby player as well as a successful salesperson at Tradeview. I also think it helps that Tim and I have played on the same field together, and there is a trust that is built on the rugby pitch that carries into the office.
(Ben Sadgrove) I think there are a numbers of reasons why someone would want to specifically hire rugby players namely toughness or strength of attitude, let’s face it sales is not an easy gig and you have to be able to take rejection and keep moving forward, like on the football field just because you get a hit hard doesn’t mean you can leave the game. Also rugby like a lot of sports is team orientated, the ability to take instructions and work well within a team structure is key for any organization to function and grow.
3. What has rugby taught you that translates well into being a Forex broker?
(Mike Murphy) Rugby has taught me many lessons, but I would have to say that the most important lesson is to stay focused, and never lose sight of your goal. In terms of rugby, this means working hard in the gym during the off season, committing to becoming better player every practice, and being ready to perform as part of a team on gameday when it counts.
The same thing can be said for my approach to working at Tradeview. Every day, I read about the industry, learn as much as I can to become an expert in my field, and my job is to always be ready to perform, or share what I know when I am speaking to clients. Rugby involves a constant effort to get better and perfect your craft, as does working in sales.
(Ben Sadgrove) I’ve traveled to a lot of countries playing rugby and have played with many different nationalities, being that Forex is truly an international job understanding different cultures and relating to them on a personal level has definitely helped me with my sales. You also get a basic understanding of foreign exchange rates. Being Australian and travelling to the UK the first time with AUD I saw firsthand the relationship between the two currencies…. and how much less I had in my bank account.
4. For you, is playing rugby a pastime or more of a lifestyle?
(Mike Murphy) Rugby is definitely a lifestyle…basically been a 2nd job we weren’t paid for but loved to do. We practice twice a week, train in the gym when we don’t have practice, and play every weekend in the fall, spring, and summer. We have travelled across the USA for away matches, worked in fundraisers, and volunteered at events across the city. I spend A LOT of time with my teammates…almost as much as I spent with my coworkers. Some of these coworkers are my teammates. We play on the field together, we work together, and we hang out together when we aren’t busy with the other
(Ben Sadgrove) Rugby will always be a lifestyle for me and at one stage of my life it defined who I was, I literally was a professional rugby player. Rugby culture is a strong one, I’ve made a lot very close friends throughout the world that I will always be ‘mates’ with.
5. What is it about rugby that sets you apart from other brokers who don’t play the sport?
(Mike Murphy) Rugby taught me how to work in groups and how to be goal oriented. It also taught me a lot about time management and balancing work with rugby/social commitments. Most importantly however and probably the difference you will see between me and other brokers in the industry is that rugby gave me confidence. Where does this confidence come from? It comes from past success in a sport that most people know is tough to play but haven’t tried. It also comes from my story. I have met some very interesting people from all around the world and traveled to some very cool places as a result of my rugby career. I think it made me a better person with a more interesting story…someone who you remember meeting.
(Rory Collins) There are a lot of factors that make a successful broker, and there are a lot of successful brokers. The reason rugby players are set apart from other brokers is their drive, not just to be successful, but to be exceptional.
There is a certain drive that pushes all elite athletes to next levels. Rugby players are an exceptionally driven group of elite athletes, which makes just being successful not enough. The same drive that makes them exceptional in the sports arena drives them to be exceptional in the professional arena too. I think what gives them their drive is their passion. Only a rugby player can know what it feels like to be in that position when it will take everything you have to be outstanding in the sport, the passion that makes you put your whole body and mind and heart into something. They carry that with them always. Its the reason they found themselves in that sport in the first place… what drew them to it. Its what drives them to be brokers, and what drives them to always be outstanding.
6. Does the Tradeview office culture create incentives more for working on your own, or more as part of a team?
(Ben Sadgrove) First and foremost we have to work as one unit if the company is to succeed. No one company can rely solely on only one salesman. Everyone needs to be excelling for the company to grow and do well. Of course individual bonuses will push you harder but a champion team will always beat a team of champions.
7. Is rugby ‘culture’ different from other sporting cultures found in football, basketball , baseball or even MMA?
(Rory Collins) There is a very unique bond formed between people when put under severe pressure together, when faced with huge opposition in what they are trying to do. The success isn’t rated by the end score, but how you carried yourself when all the chips were down. Rugby players don’t need to talk about it, rarely spoken about, not even in jest, but what demands respect on the pitch is whether you stood up and fought, and that you did it for something bigger than you…your team. No protection or pads, just unspoken rules and codes of conduct that are inherent with the respect you have for other players, on your team and opposition.
With rugby the potential for fatal or crippling injuries are everywhere and very real. Each player knows the effort it takes to compete in the game, and with that, respect is earned. As opposed to other sports with their stoppages, helmets, pads and everything else that creates a safe environment, rugby can be the most brutal and dangerous sport that every existed. That is where the culture of rugby, for the men who play, is born.
8. What is your rugby background and how did you first meet Tim?
(Ben Sadgrove) I started playing rugby at Terrigal high school at the age of 15, which is about an hour north of Sydney Australia. From there I was selected to play for the ACT Brumby U’21s and then NSW Country 1st XV. After a quick stint in the USA playing for New York Old Blue I moved back to Australia for a season in the Sydney premier competition with the Gordon Highlanders then moved to the North of England to play with Huddersfield RFC. In 2004 I returned to NYC to play with New York Old Blue where I still live today and in that time have played for the USA Hawks and USA Tomahawks (Rugby League). I’ve also played for the Classic Australian Wallabies and have recently been selected to play for the USA Classic Eagles In Bermuda.
I first met Tim playing at a rugby event in ’04 down in Florida called ‘Ruggerfest’. Tim later moved to New York City and played for Old Blue where we became teammates and friends and the rest as they say is history.
(Mike Murphy) I met Tim Furey my first game playing for old blue. I had just graduated from UConn, moved to New York, and I had very few friends in NYC. I spoke to a few friends about playing rugby and they all suggested I play for Old Blue. I went to one practice, and decided that the old blue community was right for me. In the first game I played for them, I started in the 2nd row. Late in the second half, Tim, an established player with the club broke the line and put me away for a try, which won the game. We went out and celebrated the win… 2 weeks later, Tim offered me the opportunity of a lifetime. Now I am here at Tradeview. That connection on the field ended up being the moment that propelled me into my career.
- Height: 6’2
- Weight: 230lbs
- Position: 2nd Row
- Hometown: Brookfield, CT
- Years Active: 2002-2014
Teams Played for:
- University of Connecticut RFC – 2002-06
- Old Blue NY RFC – 2006-13
- New York Knights RLFC – 2012-13
- USA Tomahawks – 2014
- 2012 AMNRL National Champion – New York Knights
- 2013 USA Rugby D3 Runner up – Old Blue NY RFC
- Born Cork, Ireland ’77
- Started playing at under-8’s
- the main teams ive played with, in order, are ..
- Munster schools ’95 ’96 Munster u-20 ’97 Munster Inter-pro ’97 Irish Schools ’96 Irish Universitys ’98
- Irish u-21’s ’98
- Irish Academy ’96 ’97 ’98
- University College Cork, Ireland ’98
- South Australia u-21 – ’99
- South Australia – ’99
- University of Queensland, Australia – 2000
- University of Cape Town, South Africa – ’04
- Cork Constitution RFC, Cork, Ireland – ’05
- St Lambert Locks, Montreal, Canada – ’07, ’08, ’09
- Old Blue RFC, New York, ’10,’11,’12