Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Electric Car

The Electric Car Will Have a Tough go of it the Media Reports - Daaaah!
Ahhhh yes the electric car. There was much fanfare about the coming electric cars. Now the media reports they will have a tough go of it. Daaaaaa? Every new product that can impact human behavior has a rough go. But none the less it is a new product that can change the rate of consumption of oil in this country. Yes there will be many varying iterations of the electric car. Yes there is much to do to support the electric car in terms of recharging it when it runs a little low on “juice”. Maybe there will be totally self- regenerating version soon. Maybe there will be solar augmentation. Maybe there will batteries that will hold a high voltage charge for a thousand miles. Needless to say there will be changes and adaptations to come.
Support the New and Innovative
On the other hand the media should be a little more supportive of a product being introduced at one of the most challenging economic periods known to man. The media should be reporting on the progress of the technology and the support network being defined by the public and the manufacturers. Maybe the media should talk about what is in store rather that gloom and doom. Support the new and innovative rather than be critical of it. This is the dawning of new things to come. We should be in awe of it. Remember the PC?

Friday, October 22, 2010

Lawyers Are Not Good Business People

Gulf Business Needs Good Business People – Not Lawyers
I read where small businesses in the gulf region of the United States are having some difficulty receiving compensation from BP. BP has shifted it’s own burden to Kenneth Fienberg a renowned lawyer. No let me say that many of my best friends are lawyers. I work with many more throughout the workday. I am literally surrounded by them. They are the tool makers of many a transaction I create. I like lawyers. But in most cases they are not good business people and they think too much like a lawyer and not enough like a business person. Thus offer a lawyer a job as a manager of a growing enterprise and the vast majority will tell you that is not their gift or the best use of their training. So back to the story. Mr. Fienberg is in the position to make many a business decision. Yes he is a genius but this is not the best use of his experience and training.
What Should BP Do?
Well it is not my style to criticize without providing some sort of a cogent solution. BP should form a series of panels. Those members of the panels should possess the expertise of a specific industry. All applications should then be forwarded to that panel. The panel should employ the standard evaluative tools that are common to assess the success of the enterprise pre-spill and then provide a comparative analysis to the current period of the application. Based on that analysis then a determination should be made as to the extent of impediment to working capital the business has experienced. That impeded amount is then what should be infused into the business. The financial statements should be cross referenced to the bank statements and vendor accounts payable confirmation. In short you have a mini audit. The very maximum you could afford to do considering the time constraints.
Let Business People Do What They Do Best
Let business people evaluate the requests. Do not overburden the process with too much of lawyer doing lawyer stuff. Utilize the experience of people in the know to shorten the fuse. In short let the business people so what they do best. Let the lawyers do what they do best. And let the gulf businesses get back to do what they do best as soon as possible…business!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Foreclosure Mess!


There Should Be No Mess!
I am a Merchant Banker. I therefore can be critical of the other members of the banking community. I am on the inside with the rest of the banking industry. So here goes. Foreclosure mess????? What mess???? There should be no mess! You that are in the mess and created the mess make the rest of us look like we are idiots. When a banker lends money there are several considerations. Aside from the four C’s and a host of other considerations one must also prepare what to do when the credit goes bad. And if it goes bad how to technically handle matters related thereto. It is after all what we do!
Do It Right or Get out of the Business
To listen to the media every day and hear that there may be grievous errors in the handling of thousands of foreclosures is astounding to me. To find out that the contracted professionals were not monitored properly is shocking. It is after all what we are supposed to do. To read that paper was just pushed around for the sake of pushing paper is appalling. To find out that law firms hired by major institutions fumbled thousands of files and may have put people on the street without proper consideration makes me sick to my stomach. Listen Mr. Big Banker this is what you do! Do it right or get out of the business because you may have no business in it if this is the way you are going to conduct yourself! People’s lives and futures are at stake. It is your responsibility to treat them fairly. Remember when they were a customer and not a file? This is what you do… assess, lend, manage and occasionally recover. Be better at what you do!
Treat People With the Respect They Deserve
Now you are starting the foreclosure process again. I hope Mr. Big Banker remembers what he is supposed to do. Practice what you preach. You always say this is about people first. Well then follow your own sermon. Remember that file you are handling? Once it was a valued customer. Treat the file and the people behind the file with the respect they deserve.