Mr Browning has ventured out of the glass walls of the executive office to situate himself at an ordinary work station. He believes having line-of-sight accessibility for all staff makes for a more collegiate, transparent and innovative organisation.
“It allows you to feel the energy in the office,” Mr Browning said.
That energy will be called for because since taking over from the retiring Michael Walsh in mid-February Mr Browning has been set a formidable challenge by the ethical investment company’s board.
He has been asked to double the grant from the operating surplus that UCA Funds Management donates to synod and affiliated organisations.
“It’s an ambitious target,” Mr Browning said.
“The challenge is to build a strategy to achieve that outcome.”
That strategy will require growing funds under management from external investors, with 94 per cent of the money that UCA Funds Management currently oversees coming from synod-related sources.
“We recognise we have a fantastic cornerstone client in synod and church-affiliated organisations,” Mr Browning said.
“We must continue to love our existing clients and then leverage that to take it to the next level.”
He believes that UCA Funds Management can appeal to outside investors because of its values-based nature.
“The uniqueness of the offer comes from the ethical authenticity of our investment products. That authenticity is very saleable,” Mr Browning said.
It was the for-purpose nature of UCA Funds Management that attracted Mr Browning to the role after 10 years in senior roles at the Myer Family Company.
“I think purpose is important,” he said.
“It’s been something that’s inherent to the organisations I’ve worked for.”
Mr Browning has already distilled his vision of UCA Funds Management’s mission as striving for “better companies, better returns and a better world”.