Life at The Fool

Core Values

At their worst, Core Values are corporate jargon and fuel for jokes – but used in the right way, they can be amazing. These principles have potential to develop a company’s culture into one that exists without much oversight.

Created by Fools across the business, our principles differ from your typical buzz words. Though these terms hang on our office walls, they don’t live there - they breathe throughout our culture and in each Fool’s daily actions.

So what exactly are The Motley Fool’s Core Values?



1. Collaborative - Do Great Things Together

The Motley Fool was founded in community. We’re better investors because we listen to our members and learn from their experiences. This spirit also translates into our workplace. Employees are happier and more productive when they know each other, and together we gain energy working toward the same goals. We take collaboration seriously here at the Fool. In fact, we have a full-time Chief Collaboration Officer who encourages teamwork and community throughout our workplace.

2. Innovative - Search for a better solution. Then top it.

The term innovation can drum up images of world-changing ideas or inventions. We at the Fool certainly want to change the world, but innovation is more about improving things and embracing change. It’s constantly searching for ways to “Top It!” We urge Fools to search for better solutions and try new things. It’s really easy to criticize an idea and lose sight of the problem you are trying to solve. In an instant, any Fool can reframe the conversation with that two-word term – TOP IT – and we are back on track to focus on the issue we’re trying to solve. Big innovation comes in big steps and small steps, and we always want to be walking forward.

3. Fun - Revel in your work.

The Fool is a fun place to work. We believe that life and work cannot be separated so we try to integrate them. We want all Fools to think about how they can add fun to their day and how they can love their work. Everyone is encouraged to take time to socialize, play, exercise, create, or relax. And while it’s always fun to take a break, we really want people to love what they do. Fun also has a very direct business purpose. It decreases burnout, increases collaboration, and improves employee retention – WIN!

4. Honest - Make us proud.

This straightforward value gives us a framework for making company-wide decisions. In a business built on intellectual capital, with the stated purpose of helping the world invest better, honesty is essential. We chose our words carefully: Make. Us. Proud. Not “Don’t break the law” or “Tell the truth” or “Call ‘em like you see ‘em.” For us, honesty has to go beyond what is legally defensible. Honesty also emphasizes the difference between core values and a code of ethics. Our core values serve as fundamental beliefs that we can turn to when making decisions. They should be easy to explain, embrace, and employ as decision-making tools. A code of ethics – although closely related — is generally a more formalized list of do’s and don’ts. It’s almost a *gulp* “policy.”

5. Competitive – Play hard, play fair, play to win.

We’re a results-driven company that aims to provide the best investment advice for individual investors everywhere. Without our competitive edge, The Motley Fool wouldn’t stand so far apart from Wall Street. Competitive is a core value because we’re constantly striving to be better than the best. No matter if Fools are innovating a new online service or challenging each other at ping pong, we play to win in everything we do.

6. Motley - Make Foolishness your own.

Every Fool chooses an original “Motley” value that becomes incorporated into their work ethic. Whether it’s one word or a long phrase, each unique Motley hangs on a sign above each employee’s desk. We ask new hires to choose this value on their very first day, giving them a taste of our creative environment right from the start. A tenured Fool explains why “Motley” is so important to us here.

The Fool Rules

The Fool Rules serves as our virtual employee handbook, highlighting company policies – and the back stories that explain their existence – with video interviews, illustrations, and interactive content. We give you the scoop on everything from annual retreats to internal communication, mentoring, feedback, and why every April Fool’s Day is so important. Click here to start learning more about us now!

Visit The Fool

Tour Our Office

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to work at The Motley Fool? You’re certainly not the only one! Lucky for you, we offer the opportunity to visit Fool HQ on the first Friday of every month through our Workplace Foolosophy Tours. Hosted by a People Team Fool, you’ll get the full scoop behind our company’s history, core values, and unique workplace culture. If you’re excited about the possibility of bringing new ideas to your workplace, this tour is for you! Plus all the fun happens in under 2 hours. Sign up here.