The Power of Habits

'We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.' -- Aristotle 

It is an easy to read book with useful insight into the peculiarities of frail, powerful and sometimes, misguided, human behaviour powered by habits.

Habits are powerful. This book brings to surface the neuroscience behind habits and what makes them so powerful at individual, organisational and social settings.

It is an easy read, with useful application in day-today life.

On a organisation level, though, it made me realise that in this age when data and knowledge is omnipresent, it cannot be the foundation for competitive advantage. This is akin to the adage - 'If everyone is special, then no one is'

The greatest leaders, in my opinion, will emerge from a scarce pool of individuals endowed with an innate understanding of human behaviour far ahead of research in psychology. Their business manoeuvres will likely carry an aura of mystery or ridicule for a long time while our knowledge of human behaviour catches up. It is likely that they will produce excellent results over long period of time and as a result, become the subject in the case studies of prominent business schools. 

This, however, is not an argument against acquiring core competency in one's chosen field. That's a given, proficiency is the entry price to business arena.

In 1987, Alcoa - Aluminium company of America, was in dire circumstances when Paul O'Neil, former government bureaucrat was appointed the CEO of the company. His job was to turn the fortunes around the ailing steel manufacturer. Given his bureaucratic government background, most people believed that the board had committed a grave error. Their fears came true during his first speech where he laid his strategy - “I want to talk to you about worker safety. I intend to make Alcoa the safest company in America. I intend to go for zero injuries.” Not a single word was mentioned on turnaround strategy. 

By the time O’Neill retired in 2000, the company’s annual net income was five times larger than before he arrived, and its market capitalisation had risen by $27 billion.

O’Neill figured his top priority, if he took the job, would have to be something that everybody—unions and executives—could agree was important. He needed a focus that would bring people together, that would give him leverage to change how people worked and communicated.

The key to protecting Alcoa employees, O’Neill believed, was understanding why injuries happened in the first place. And to understand why injuries happened, you had to study how the manufacturing process was going wrong. To understand how things were going wrong, you had to bring in people who could educate workers about quality control and the most efficient work processes, so that it would be easier to do everything right, since correct work is also safer work.

This stroke of insight was well thought out, he wanted to be reported any injury with 24 hours, no exception. This meant layers of bureaucracy that impaled the organisation for years had to be broken down.

The most important aspect of his strategy was his insight about human behaviour. What would it take to align everyone towards the vision of the organisation.

Everybody joined hands since it was beneficial for everyone - I believe this was ingenious.

As always, would love hear your thoughts/opinions below.

The Goal

This is a book on operations management. The message of the book is that an organisation resembles a chain and is only as strong as its weakest link. The book rightly concludes that an organisation is more than the sum of its parts.

The author demonstrates using both logic and analogy that local optimisation without identifying the weakest link is a losing strategy. “A system of local optimums is not an optimum system at all; it is a very inefficient system.” For example, keeping people busy for the sake of keeping people busy is an example of local optimisation.

There are couple of management adage on measurement - 'If you cannot measure it, you can't manage it' and 'You get what you measure.' The book highlights the negatives of choosing wrong (suboptimal) measures. Hint: Most traditional measures of efficiency and productivity are flawed. 

Author claims that the universal goal is to make money - by increasing net profit, while simultaneously increasing return on investment, and simultaneously increasing cash flow. In other words, the goal is to increase throughput while simultaneously reducing both inventory and operating expense.

I am not convinced if that is the goal. The goal in my opinion is to deliver value through one or more means. Seeking operational excellence in whatever means an organisation chooses to deliver value is an absolute must. No doubt about it. I am not sure, though, if that is the end all and be all.

The best part about the book is the explanation on the interaction between dependant events and statistical fluctuations. In summary, the theory suggests that statistical fluctuations don't average out because dependency limits the opportunities for higher fluctuations. Thereby, accumulating slowness (excess inventory).

The author elaborately explains the havoc dependant events and statistical fluctuations cause on operational expense when they happen to be together using hike and match stick examples. 

Using these examples author concludes that whoever is moving the slowest in the troop is the one who will govern throughput. This is precisely how bottlenecks or constraints are identified.

The rest of the book goes about how to effectively deal with constraints. The author proposed a five step process as outlined below
  • IDENTIFY the system’s constraint. 
  • Decide how to EXPLOIT the system’s constraint. 
  • SUBORDINATE everything else to the above decisions. 
  • ELEVATE the system’s constraint. 
  • If in the previous steps a constraint has been broken Go back to step 1, but do not allow inertia to cause a system constraint.
In his fictional story, author points to other issues that start to show up when the organisation starts managing the bottlenecks in line with the five step process.

This is where the disappointing part starts. From this point onwards, author reverse engineers/retro-fits the concepts usually associated with that of Toyota Production System or Lean manufacturing like balancing flow, pull, takt time etc. into his theory of constraints.

The last part of the book focuses on environments where it makes sense to implement lean vs lighter, time based constraints to restrict over production citing Hitachi Tool Engineering Ltd. as a case study. I found this discussion quite valuable.

Overall, I would still recommend this book. But I would vastly prefer The Toyota Way over The Goal.

On a side note, at one point in the book author draws an analogy from periodic table (chemistry). In doing so, author provides an amazing introduction to periodic table. Had I been introduced to the concept of periodic table in this manner, I might have done better in chemistry during school days.

Made in America: Sam Walton

If you want to hear Walmart story straight from the horse’s mouth, give this book a good read. This book is filled with timeless wisdom from arguably one of the finest entrepreneur of 20th century. It is also a good introduction to retail industry.

One thing that impressed me the most about Sam Walton was his driven, action oriented approach. Bear in mind through, his primary motivation wasn’t money. He was a down to earth man with frugality one of his life’s principle. It just so happened that he was driven for most part of his life to building the best retail chain in the world. 

Sam Walton was a voracious learner and willing to learn from everybody. This, I believe, was one his greatest strength. In his own words – ‘You can learn from everybody. I didn’t just learn from reading every retail publication I could get my hands on, I probably learned the most from studying what John Dunham was doing across the street.’

He visited more stores than anyone ever, always trying to learn how others were going about doing their business. I wouldn’t necessarily put him in the category of an innovator, but he wasn’t shy about stealing, borrowing good ideas from anybody.

Sam Walton was forty-four when he took Walmart public. He had been practising and perfecting the art of running a retail chain for almost 20 years prior to that. He wasn’t afraid to try new ideas and experiment. In his own words, ‘Like most overnight successes, it was about twenty years in the making’

He knew the boundaries of his strengths. He was persuasive with an uncanny ability to get the right people on board and get the best out of them.

After reading the book, I came away with the impression that his world rotated around the needs of the customer. He seemed to understand better than most people that an organisation is about delivering value to the customer.

One of the key things to takeaway is his attitude/approach towards change and operational excellence. He constantly worried about the ability to respond to change. Intuitively understood the importance of staying lean and nimble. ‘You can’t just keep doing what works one time, because everything around you is always changing. To succeed, you have to stay out in front of that change.’

On the importance of operation excellence, ‘You can make a lot of different mistakes and still recover if you run an efficient operation.

He was an astute observer and quite adept at reading trends. I wonder how quick would have Walmart been in recognising the radical changes internet would bring on retail industry if Sam Walton was still around. I guess we will never know for sure.

Reading the following lines in his book, I could help but think of Jeff Bezos.

Somewhere out there right now there’s someone—probably hundreds of thousands of someones—with good enough ideas to go all the way. It will be done again, over and over, providing that someone wants it badly enough to do what it takes to get there. It’s all a matter of attitude and the capacity to constantly study and question the management of the business.

In summary, definitely a worthwhile read.

The story of Amazon and Jeff Bezos

I always like reading a book on an organisation. The kind of perspective that is provided by an author in a book is always a comprehensive account of how an organisation thinks and operates. I find that the equivalent of this cannot be achieved by reading annual reports or magazine articles. Here are my thoughts on Amazon, based on my reading of the book – Everything Store by Brad Stone.

Amazon is driven by a man with relentless work ethics and insatiable desire for customer obsession. I suspect working for Bezos is no different to working for Elon Musk and/or Steve Jobs. He is driven and holds people accountable to highest standards. He can be rude and oftentimes downright brutal when people are not delivering upto his standards. There is a saying that – “If you are not upto his standard, he will chew you and spit you out, if you are good, he will ride your back into the ground’.  This can be unbearable at a personal level but results in the best for the company and ultimately for the customer.

I sense that Bezos saw a hero, a mentor in Sam Watlon. If Sam Watlon was alive today, he would be a pretty happy with what Bezos has built by applying his principles.

The beauty about Amazon is that it is not driven by profits, it truly is driven by customer obsession.

Since its early days, it offered customers value for money, convenience and large collection of books. Amazon tried to differentiate itself by having reviews of the books and hoping, that it would provide enough reason for customers to come back.

During the early days of dotcom boom, capital was cheap and Bezos was focused on making Amazon big with the motto – Get big fast. Shortly afterwards, the dot com bust happened. Suddenly, everything changed. It became impossible to raise capital and Bezos was faced with making some tough decisions. This was his first real test as a leader to help navigate the crisis.

Over the next decade, he battled a range of issues/crisis to emerge as one of the greatest leaders of our time.

So, what sets Amazon apart from the rest of the organisations in the world. In one word, the ability to delay gratification, forever. You see – most organisation in the world are driven by profits – the question is ‘to what degree’. Amazon is not driven by profits at all, they are driven by offering the best – in terms of choices, everyday lower prices, convenience and a great customer experience that there is to the customer. Amazon would go to any extend imaginable to make it happen (being a hard nosed negotiator with its suppliers and partners). In other words, they are willing to operate at a loss forever to achieve its objective of customer obsession. Some might even say, Amazon is leading the race to zero!

Amazon it seems has become the best at the art of surviving with lowest and sometimes negative profit margins. This in turn, has turned Amazon into the greatest master at operational excellence. Most organisations accumulate bureaucracy and waste during good times and are forced to banish waste during an economic downturn. Amazon on the other hand, invents its own crisis and stays lean.

This is why competitors fear Amazon. To compete with Amazon on price war alone is like a death blow. Jeff Bezos is willing to let Amazon bleed to near death to provide lowest cost to its customer with better service. No wonder a lot of book stores and other retailers are getting busted. Jeff Bezos is a fast learner too, once he understood the iTunes model of cornering music industry, without wasting any time he replicated it with Kindle and ebooks.

In capitalism, it is often said that the cure for high price is high price. When a sector or an industry has very high margins, it attracts flood of investment from business and entrepreneurs who all want a piece of that pie. This in-turn, forces margins of every player and erodes the profit margins in the industry (regression to the mean). This distinct advantage to keep profits margins high and keep competitors at bay is what Warren Buffet refers to as economic moat.

Jeff Bezos observed the phenomena with iPhone (which he called – iPhone mistake), where multiple companies (Google etc.) tried to enter the new smartphone market to get their share of the high profit margin pie. It is in a way a testament to Apple for being able to keep competitors at bay.

Jeff Bezos and Amazon have an interesting and unconventional method of dealing with the fundamental nature of capitalism. Unsurprisingly, it is keep the prices so low that many would never imagine entering and competing in the industry. This is precisely what he did with AWS. It took competitors like Google and Microsoft 2-3 years before they woke up to the potential within cloud computing in the infrastructure as a service.

Also, it is not scared to cannibalise its own business, it seems to realise that if you don’t cannibalism yourself then somebody else will. Bezos is not afraid of failed experiments, and some of the bets like those of droned deliveries is a testament to it.

Another principle at the heart of Amazon Is the Darwinian concept of survival of the fittest that has adopted within its workforce. Every year Amazon lets go of the lowest performing employees. This is in line with Jack Welch advise that fire the bottom 2% of the employees every year of you want to have the best team.

Another one of the principle that Jeff Bezos embodied from Sam Watlon is that of frugality. Amazon offers none of the perks that Google and other technical companies in Silicon Valley do to their employees. The line of thinking is clear – if an investment does not help customer deliver value (customer experience, lower cost etc), then its not worth making.

On a personal note, one thing that I will be taking home from this book is the idea that need to communicate more and often is a sign of dysfunction within the team. The team should be designed in a manner that reduces the overhead of communication.

In my opinion, there are two ways to invest in Amazon either by short selling the companies/industry sector where Amazon is operating or waiting for an economic downturn.

Amazon is built on the concept of survival of the fittest. It seems as if Amazon is designed to take benefit of economic downturns. To me, the best time to initiate a position in Amazon will be during an economic downturn. When other players in the market will be struggling, Amazon will come out stronger than ever.

Musk Inc. – SpaceX, Tesla and Solarcity

Why does it make sense to invest in either Tesla or Solarcity? Answer: Elon Musk

Elon Musk is a rare individual with all of the traits that epitomises a visionary entrepreneur. I have outlined some of the qualities that makes him eligible to become one of the greatest leaders of our time.

Grit – Never give up

Elon Musk suffered pain and was bullied and beaten during his school days. He went through a very painful childhood and loss of his first son.

Outlined below is an account of what his friends, family and colleagues say about him.

'He has a level of stamina and an ability to deal with levels of stress that I’ve never seen in anyone else.'

'As I watched him climb that final hundred feet with suffering all over his face, I thought, That’s Elon. Do or die but don’t give up.' – On a bicycle climb for which he was ill-prepared.

'When Elong first arrived in Canada, he got himself a gig cleaning the boiler room of a lumber mill for eighteen dollars an hour. Thirty people started out at the beginning of the week. By the third day, five people were left. At the end of the week, it was just Musk and two other men doing the work.'

'The harder/stressful the situation gets, the better he gets The kind of situation he faced when trying to save Tesla from going bankrupt, others would have given up.'

'You always knew it was Elon because the phone would never stop ringing. The man does not take no for an answer. You can’t blow him off. I do think of him as the Terminator. He locks his gaze on to something and says, ‘It shall be mine.’ Bit by bit, he won me over -  His first wife

For Elon, the word no does not exist, and he expects that attitude from everyone around him. In his own words, ‘My mentality is that of a samurai. I would rather commit seppuku than fail.’

“He has the ability to work harder and endure more stress than anyone I’ve ever met,” Gracias said. “What he went through in 2008 would have broken anyone else. He didn’t just survive. He kept working and stayed focused.”

“Most people who are under that sort of pressure fray,” Gracias said. 'Their decisions go bad. Elon gets hyper-rational. He’s still able to make very clear, long-term decisions. The harder it gets, the better he gets.'

He started selling off prized possessions like the McLaren to generate extra cash. He sent impassioned pleas to anyone he could think of who might be able to spare some money.

I don’t want to be the person who ever has to compete with Elon. You might as well leave the business and find something else fun to do. He will outmaneuver you, outthink you, and out-execute you

Drive

Outside of his studies, Elon would read the newspaper alongside Kimbal, and the two of them would identify interesting people they would like to meet. They then took turns cold-calling these people to ask if they were available to have lunch.

Amazing negotiator
When his professor awarded 98/100 - “He went back to the professor, and talked his way into the two points he lost and got a hundred,”

Visionary
He demonstrated an innate ability to read people and technology trends at the inception of the consumer Web. He founded zip2 and PayPal.

Brilliant – Prodigy
People who have spent significant time with Musk will attest to his abilities to absorb incredible quantities of information with near-flawless recall.

Among other things, he is self taught rocket expert. And he did that by reading books.

“Elon is one of the few people that I feel is more accomplished than I am,” said Craig Venter, the man who decoded the human genome and went on to create synthetic lifeforms.

Musk’s behavior matches up much more closely with someone who is described by neuropsychologists as profoundly gifted. These are people who in childhood exhibit exceptional intellectual depth and max out IQ tests. It’s not uncommon for these children to look out into the world and find flaws—glitches in the system—and construct logical paths in their minds to fix them.

Creating a team of A++ players
Musk has an innate ability to find bright, ambitious people and lure them to his companies.

He interviewed almost every one of SpaceX’s first one thousand hires, including the janitors and technicians, and has continued to interview the engineers as the company’s workforce swelled.

Musk was always looking for brainy engineers who had not just done well at school but had done something exceptional with their talents by Dolly Singh SpaceX recruiter

The guiding principle at SpaceX is to embrace your work and get stuff done. People who await guidance or detailed instructions languish. The same goes for workers who crave feedback.

Musk could be equally brisk with employees who were not hitting his standards. “He would often say, ‘The longer you wait to fire someone the longer it has been since you should have fired them"

It’s almost a binary experience experience for him. Either you’re trying to make something spectacular with no compromises or you’re not. And if you’re not, Musk considers you a failure.

Everyone could see it, and people lost their jobs when they didn’t deliver.

Employees fear Musk. They adore Musk. The give up their lives for Musk, and they usually do all of this simultaneously.

Lean and Fast
He has build an empire which is vertically integrated with a very high performance team

Tesla sent its engineers along with the Roadsters being tested and had them analyze the data on the spot. When something needed to be tweaked, the engineers would rewrite some code and send the car back on the ice. In contrast, BMW would need to have a confab between three or four companies that would all blame each other for the problem

All of the three organisations are run like a start-up

Competitive Advantages
SpaceX and Tesla are miles ahead of traditional aerospace companies and auto makers

There exists enormous synergy between the three companies – SpaceX, Tesla and Solarcity.

The incumbents are filled with buerocracy and will find huge challenges to catch up.

SpaceX can undercut its U.S. competitors—Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Orbital Sciences—on price by a ridiculous margin.

SpaceX boasts that the Falcon Heavy can take up twice the payload of the nearest competitor—the Delta IV Heavy from Boeing/ ULA—at one-third the cost.

The Road Ahead
Elon Musk is very good at raising money. He puts his money where his mouth is. These days taking a company public is more about cashing out the venture capital as opposed to borrowing money to expand further. Musk, on the other hand, is not fond to taking companies public due to the nuisance of shareholders coming in the way of the accomplishing the vision.

Musk Inc. have a long way to go and there is plenty that can go wrong. I strongly feel that Elon Musk will be counted among the greatest with the likes of Hnrey Ford, Sam Watson, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. It’s going to be a hell of a ride, though

One up (My SMSF) against Super Funds

Like most individuals, during my early (working) years, I took no interest in my Superannuation. Back then, I had no idea about who my super provider was, where or how it was invested, or how much fees (excessive) was I paying.

As I educated myself I learnt that very few (less than 1%) active funds manage to beat their benchmark index over a long period of time. I also realised that excessive fees charged by actively managed funds erode the wealth of the uninformed investors.

Upon learning the fallacies (part-1 and part-2) of actively managed super fund, I rolled over both my and partners super to ING Direct Living Super, which allowed me to invest in broad-market based ETF. ING living Super allowed me to invest in listed ASX 200 securities (stocks) and selected ETFs.

As I gained experience I found the choice of ETFs offered by ING too restrictive. I was unable to invest in VAS.AX (cheapest ASX 300 ETFs) since it was not on the list of selected ETFs.

ING Direct Living Super restricts investor to a maximum of 20% of total account balance in any one share. This is a well though out policy which protects the investor from the mistake of putting all eggs in one basket. However, when it comes to ETFs, this makes no sense since investing in a single ETF like VAS.AX provides a wide diversification of 300 stocks.

ING direct charges a reasonable trading platform fee (fixed) of $180 per annum and has a minimum brokerage fee of $20 for every trade. To keep transaction costs down, I let funds accumulate in my super throughout the year and purchased additional shares once every year. As a result of 20% rule, I was forced to make four trades (instead of one) which increased my brokerage fees from $20 to $80 per year.

The fact that me and my partner were required to maintain separate super (APRA) accounts meant that together we were paying the same set of fees twice.

Because of the reasons outlined above, I established my SMSF in late 2013.

It is now time to review the performance returns against the performance of actively managed super funds. For the year, 2014 My SMSF (highlighted in the table below) delivered a return of 11.70%. The return figure is net of all costs:
  • Transaction cost ($20)
  • Super Admin cost ($0) 
    • My Super administration provider waived off the super admin fees for the first year. If I consider the administration fees ($699), then the net return comes at 10.30%.
  • ATO levy 
  • Tax (@15%)
The table below ranks the performance of 119 super funds between 1st Jan 2014 to 31st Dec 2014.
Investment OptionAsset ConsultantGrowth Assets (%)1 Year
QSuper BalancedQSuper6112.7
VAS ASX 300NA11.70
IOOF Balanced Investor TrustRussell7010.9
UniSuper BalancedUniSuper7010
Kinetic Super AggressiveTowers Watson76.59.9
AMP Future Directions BalancedTowers Watson739.8
Intrust Super BalancedJANA759.7
Statewide Super MySuperJANA809.7
Kinetic Super GrowthTowers Watson629.6
Statewide Super Active BalancedJANA709.6
VicSuper Growth (MySuper)Frontier759.5
CFS FirstChoice GrowthMercer809.5
CFS FirstChoice BalancedMercer709.5
Telstra Super BalancedJANA749.4
HOSTPLUS BalancedJANA769.3
MLC GrowthJANA799.2
Catholic Super Mod. AggressiveJANA809.2
REI Super Trustee Super Balanced (MySuper)Ibbotson799.1
MTAA My AutoSuper (Balanced)Access67.59
MLC Horizon 4MLC68.59
Energy Super BalancedJANA759
Tasplan MySuper BalancedMercer709
AustralianSuper BalancedFrontier/JANA768.9
JANA AssertiveJANA808.8
Auscoal GrowthMercer808.8
Plum Pre-Mixed ModerateJANA708.8
Equip Balanced GrowthJANA708.8
MLC MySuperJANA708.8
LGSS Balanced GrowthJANA708.7
AustSafe MySuper (Balanced)JANA70.58.7
AMP RIL BalancedTowers Watson698.7
Catholic Super Balanced (MySuper)JANA708.6
UniSuper Capital StableUniSuper308.6
MLC ModerateJANA708.5
CBUS Growth (Cbus MySuper)Frontier738.5
Suncorp GrowthIbbotson808.5
IOOF MultiMix Balanced GrowthRussell728.5
JANA ModerateJANA708.4
REST DiversifiedJANA808.4
VicSuper Capital StableFrontier408.4
OnePath OptiMix BalancedMercer/TW738.3
Mercer GrowthMercer688.3
BUSS (Q) Balanced GrowthFrontier72.58.3
GESB Super Balanced GrowthJANA748.3
RBF Tasmania BalancedJANA738.3
CareSuper BalancedJANA698.3
Plum MySuperJANA708.3
AMP ipac SD BalancedTowers Watson698.1
Aust Catholic Super & Ret MySuper BalancedTowers Watson748
Maritime Super BalancedJANA708
ESSSuper GrowthTowers Watson808
EISS DiversifiedMercer707.9
Vision Super Balanced GrowthFrontier74.57.8
HESTA Core PoolFrontier737.8
GESB Super BalancedJANA627.8
Telstra Super ConservativeJANA407.8
REST CoreJANA767.7
Energy Super Capital ManagedJANA357.7
LUCRF MySuper BalancedTowers Watson767.6
Sunsuper BalancedMercer70.57.6
FSS (NSW) DiversifiedTowers Watson707.6
AMP Future Directions ConservativeTowers Watson327.5
Tasplan ST DefensiveMercer307.5
Sunsuper GrowthMercer79.57.3
OnePath OptiMix ConservativeMercer/TW337.3
QSuper ModerateQSuper367.3
Optimum GrowthIbbotson807.2
Auscoal StableMercer407.2
Russell BalancedRussell747.1
CFS FirstChoice ConservativeMercer307.1
Equip ConservativeJANA307.1
Mercer Growth PlusMercer66.57
Intrust Super StableJANA307
Statewide Super ConservativeJANA307
Russell Balanced OppsRussell75.56.9
Mercer Conservative GrowthMercer266.9
AMP RIL ConservativeTowers Watson276.9
AMIST BalancedJANA706.8
AustralianSuper StableFrontier/JANA366.8
Commonwealth Bank Group Super Mix 70Towers Watson706.7
RBF Tasmania ConservativeJANA35.56.7
Asgard SMA BalancedAdvance/TW706.6
NGS Super Diversified (MySuper)n.a.706.6
MTAA ConservativeAccess276.6
EISS Capital GuardedMercer306.6
IOOF MultiMix ConservativeRussell306.6
BT MM BalancedAdvance/TW706.5
AMP ipac SD SecureTowers Watson306.5
REST Capital StableJANA356.5
HOSTPLUS Capital StableJANA306.5
AMIST Capital StableJANA306.5
Suncorp ConservativeIbbotson366.5
CBUS ConservativeFrontier316.4
LGSS ConservativeJANA306.3
MLC ConservativeJANA306.3
Legal Super ConservativeTowers Watson356.3
JANA ConservativeJANA326.3
Vision Super ConservativeFrontier356.3
BUSS (Q) DefensiveFrontier386.3
HESTA ConservativeFrontier35.56.2
FSS (NSW) Capital GuardedTowers Watson256.1
CareSuper Capital StableJANA32.56.1
AustSafe Capital StableJANA326
GESB Super ConservativeJANA376
Plum Pre-Mixed ConservativeJANA305.9
Catholic Super ConservativeJANA255.9
Russell ConservativeRussell36.55.8
Optimum Consv GrowthIbbotson365.7
MLC Horizon 2MLC29.55.7
Optimum Consv Growth PlusIbbotson365.6
Maritime Super ConservativeJANA305.6
NGS Super Defensiven.a.325.5
REI Super Super StableIbbotson365.4
Asgard SMA DefensiveAdvance/TW305.4
ESSSuper ConservativeTowers Watson355.4
LUCRF ConservativeTowers Watson305.4
Aust Catholic Super & Ret ConservativeTowers Watson295.2
Sunsuper ConservativeMercer275.2
Commonwealth Bank Group Super Mix 30Towers Watson305.2
BT MM ConservativeAdvance/TW305.1
* The performance figures are from Chant West
* Returns are expressed net of investment fees and tax
* Growth and conservative growth portfolios are defined as having growth assets of >60% <=80% and >=20%<=40% respectively

Full Disclaimer: I am not a financial planner. The views expressed in this post are all mine and they may or may not suit your needs. Please do you own due diligence. I do not make money on any of the products suggested in this post.

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