Sunday, October 19, 2008

Resilience Report

My good friend J Kannan kindly sent me a copy of an interesting report from booz&co suggesting we should not panic and instead maybe take a calmer view about the current financial crisis gripping the world.

If you would like to read the full report click here

As a self confessed non-expert in all this stuff my own take is that it's great to see the advice is not to hit the 'panic' button but to see this as a time of measured reflection, learning and opportunity.

I am an eternal optimist and whilst I can see there are going to be some really traumatic job losses around the world it may be this is the shock that was needed to metaphorically 'stop the world for a while' and give us all time to reflect.


J.KANNAN said...

Dear Trevor,

Thank you very much for posting Booz & Co’s “Resilience Report” for the benefit of “Simplicity” readers. May be many of our friendly readers would like to interact on the subject, with my comments if displayed.

Trevor, it is seldom, rather I would say, rarest of rare that one confesses the non-expertise area of ones access to certain topics and you have set a very good gem of an example.

I personally believe in one thing- People know and learn through interactive sessions for which “Simplicity Blog” is a very good venue, added with ones own experience..

Thank you once again Trevor.


Trevor Gay said...

And here are some comments from JK about the report .....

Strategy + Business = Formulation + Policy

The fact is that some of the FIs and Insurance companies have gone into grave yard, and some of them are on its direction towards grave yard, this is besides what is reported as some of them falling by way side. Once it has fallen in the way side it means its ultimate destination is grave yard only.-indeed a pathetic state of condition due to unplanned, unethical and in transparent way of conducting the affairs of such organizations.

Its absolutely true that over a lakh of professionals are going to loose their jobs-because of whom? It's just because of lack of professionalism in their approach and way of functioning- Well there are options for them in entering into selling fast food and make fast buck

As reported rightly many are loosing their savings, pension earnings and other investments, no doubt those governments are being tested with great pressure- Why not? Leaders having tasted the cause of the crisis, no harm absolutely, they being tested of its effect.

It is not some thing new for countries to divert its tax payer's money for other than infrastructure and support developments. How it is being utilized is a big? mark and this shall remain unanswered for years to come. Why can't governments make some budgetary provisions towards meeting such worst scenario situations like creating contingency funds allocations? It has already happened in the past and happening presently and might happen in future too. Create a contingency provision for such financial and economical calamities, and save tax payers money from utilising for such things .Governments action to subside the problems to the level of comfort and calm, looks like a long term process, on the contrary the government should find ways and means for permanent solution in short span of time keeping in mind the past bad experiences and keeping in hand the present crisis.

Is it that one has, to learn a good lesson continue to experience
and undergo bad lessons? Why can't experts and professionals find preventive measure rather than finding to manage risks and crisis as the good old saying goes "PREVENTION IS BETTER THAN CURE"- Many Leaders & professionals are under a confused state of mind, that this saying applies only for Health care and it is a wrong assumption? The effects as the report says will subside are yet to be desired as I take the privilege of expressing my opinion it will" subdue" instead of subside!!

With regard to healthy banks, FIs& Insurance cos, the report contains "a trend of relative calm and confidence will return to market"- It sounds to me like a relative term and not a realistic findings. The report further states that the present crisis is not driven by economic or geopolitical factors but through the risk management of particular Financial services institutions-Ok Good and agreed- But is there any guarantee that this crisis will not spread over and affect more such Institutions?

All said and done, one has to accept the fact that what happens in US and Europe in economics, banking and financial systems, undoubtedly affects the ROW. This we have already experienced in the past and the status-quo being maintained in the present too.

Analyzing the three opportunities appearing as reported as a measure to undo the complications of the crisis are somewhat a welcome sign.

Developed economics performing strategy and its after effect looks rosy. Retail banks and wealth Management Company's position and prospects will look brighter as indicated in the report. The move for sound risk & capital management practice by commercial banks and its innovative operating practice by the insurance companies looks encouraging and is a welcome concept. The investments banks exposure check practice is also a good move indeed, keeping in mind its assets, restructuring of business of Financial Service institutions and its related actions are a smiling sign. As the report also indicates some consolidation ahead.

As far as BRIC economies are concerned, the contents of report is acceptable as very few financial services institutions have suffered the set back of crisis in a smaller way, keeping in mind their asset holdings, net worth and carefully planned future programmes of growth and development. The BRIC economies are also geared up for phenomenal economical growth as per the recent print and visual media reports and looks like they are ready with BRICKS to use it for their advantages against certain parts of the globe and will ultimately the economies of BRIC will emerge as a strong hold for growth and development. To put it in a nutshell overall position of BRIC economy will emerge as front leaders pushing aside US and Europe in pits-wait and watch!

Coming to capital markets, it is not only fundamentally changed-its fundamentals have also stands changed as we see now. Accelaration of globalization after the crisis, as reported is a thing to watch and wait-which countries are going to be benefited and which are going to be otherwise of the balance of trade and economy. New York and London loosing its pre-eminence is already visible and some parts of the Europe are not exception to this fact.

The financial systems of the future (which is relatively connected to economic scenario) changing towards what good- is again a? mark. To wait and watch. The markets as rightly mentioned in the report will be less profitable and will not assist acceleration of GDP as is now visible and governments will have to look for alternative tax revenue (this is already in vogue in some countries) through main sources and resources. No one can save the weak wall of the street (NYC) from a major collapse.

The right course of action for the governments would be, to change the policy makers by replacing with hard core talents and professionals with right acumen, attitude, approach and expertise and experience in Finance and economics, who will be in a position to foresee and forecast economic conditions and keep in good control and aim to set it under favorable conditions than debating on post crisis issues..
This will automatically take care of prevention of further erosion in the future and prevent economic crisis-The present policy of US looks like "ROB PAUL TO PAY PETER"- nasty and stinking policy indeed. And shall not last long.
Analytical modules and models have no place in the present conditions.
The system has to be practical as well pragmatic and very well placed, apparently to lead towards economical development and growth and say bye to crisis and put the crisis to rest, failing which you will have to face more Lehman Brothers in the country and create cemetery to laid to rest at the cost of tax payers and common citizens.-The choice is yours Governments?.

Take care well, of your citizens-Do not let them fall and face debacles. Remember you are duty bound and you have been elected to power to perform your duties earnestly, effectively & effectively.


David Wike said...

Last week it was Small Business Week week, an event sponsored by British Telecom (BT). The head of BT Business reported that they had received 7,000 enquiries about potential business start-ups during the week leading up to the event.

At the launch of the event, multi-millionaire investor and Dragons’ Den star Peter Jones suggested that there had never been a better time to start a business.

The people that I talk to and hear about, mostly in small businesses, seem to be saying, “What economic downturn?”

The Home Business Report, a collaboration between BT and the home business support website Enterprise Nation ( highlights a 16% rise in the number of businesses opting to run enterprises from their own home. There are now over 2.5 million home businesses in the UK. The evidence is clear – this is fast becoming a growing sector of the UK small business community.

So while there may be turmoil in the markets, and the banks and many High Street names are struggling, there is still a sense of optimism in the wider business community. Of course, we are not likely to hear about it because the media only want to tell us about bad news. For some reason good news doesn’t seem to count as news.

Trevor Gay said...

Astute comments David thank you.

Like you I remain optimistic at an individual level – we both moved out of big organisations into self employment in the last few years and we therefore see the potential that working from home as your own boss offers. To me it is wonderful being Chief Executive, Finance Director, Sales Director, Marketing Director, Human Resources Director, and tea boy all in one.

I genuinely feel sorry for people who will lose their jobs in the recession that is inevitably coming our way but on the other hand it is a great time for those same people to strike out on their own and do interesting things.

Although there will be many casualties I feel that whether this recession is seen as opportunity or threat is largely down to one’s own mindset.

John O'Leary said...

Hard to get a perspective on this so early. A former client (from a Fortune 50 company) predicted to me last week that this is the end of capitalism. (I think she meant to add "as we know it!")

Trevor Gay said...

Hi John – Time will tell about your former client’s view about the end of capitalism. One thing is certain – we have to learn from this. As I wrote on Tom Peters Blog - given all the incredible technological advances and alleged brains there are in business in a capitalist culture that we’ve forgotten we can’t spend money we don’t have … seems pretty basic stuff to me.

Anonymous said...


Thanks for keeping the blog simple. Speaking of simplicity, check out the book Dropping Almonds by Bach Anon. Very direct writing style that chronicles Bach's 2+ years in executive leadership.

My like Bach, I'm tired of all of the strategic, visionistic, tagphrastic, valueistic (yeah right), missionistic talk in the corporate world today.

Two words: greed and greedy.

We, the American people, must not tolerate our government rewarding greed and selfish motives of corporate America. We are destined to repeat these problems because there is very little personal accountability/responsibility.

My kids would eat cake, ice cream, cookies, and other candies night after night if I let them. The reality is that they need "daily" regulation to remain healthy and active in society. It's almost as if the banks/government (parents) allowed the debtors (kids) to have whatever they wanted day after day, year after year for the past decade. You didn't even need money down to buy a house in the housing market of last year.

Much like the kid anology mentioned earlier, the kid is now fat, unhealthy, lazy, has cavities, and a presciption of Lexapro, Ritalin, oxycotin, and a whole host of other elixirs to keep them dependent on the system.

When you stand back and look at issues in America today, we not only appear somewhat pathetic to our foreign friends, but somewhat pathetic to our own populace.

Check out Dropping Almonds and continue to keep it simple.

Thanks for the blog.

Trevor Gay said...

Hi Anonymous – and thanks for your brilliant comments. I just love this extract:

‘I'm tired of all of the strategic, visionistic, tagphrastic, valueistic (yeah right), missionistic talk in the corporate world today.Two words: greed and greedy.’

Amen to that I say.

Observing your great country from afar I have to say the same problems exist here in the UK where we have all become too greedy and we are all partly responsible. It is not totally the fault of the government – we all played our part in creating the current problems. Our leaders, as JK has so eloquently stated earlier, must bear the greatest responsibility – after all why do we elect them?

Thank you for the ‘Dropping Almonds’ book tip and I will certainly follow that up. Bach Anon sounds like my sort of man!

Trevor Gay said...

PS Anonymous - just read some reviews and ordered the book – look forward to reading it. Thanks again for the recommendation – I will publish my comments on Simplicity Blog once I’ve read it.

J.KANNAN said...

Dear Trevor,

This is after reading comments of David Wike in conjunction with your reply to it.

Like you and David Wike, I too have moved out of mighty organizations after holding top management positions, and then started on my own way back in 1989. Starting my career in 1965 and having worked for 24 years for my own countries Defense Force and others(commercial & Business organizations, at times in good trust, faith and congenial environments and at times to the whims and fancies of the Management Bosses, even if they err and being brought to their notice.

I did really enjoy being a” Boss” and my “Super Boss “being none other than my wife, Managing Director of our organization and did really feel contended, comfortable and having been honoured. As you have rightly indicated, I had worked from Peon(when ever circumstances demands) to Director of my Company all by reporting to myself, be it in Finance, Marketing, Administration, Operations etc. with an exclusive exception of reporting to my Super Boss as already mentioned earlier.

I expect one to be prepared for eventualities and unforeseen circumstances in ones life and career, rather than looking for sympathies and considerations, and all that needed for this is planning. The recessions, retrenchments with other related happenings etc are never opportunities but a threat indeed and reality to people and their families.

I would suggest people to plan well in advance in their younger stages of career to be of their “Own Boss” at a later stage in future, to enjoy exclusive benefits and privileges, and set aside as savings for their project in mind from their earnings. Once this is achieved one can relax without caring for “What Will Happen?” and enjoy life and work.


Trevor Gay said...

Thanks for your sound advice as always JK.

My 'super boss' is my wife Annie and she is the best person I've ever worked for.

J.KANNAN said...

My dear Anonymous,

My dear friend please let me know the source in India to buy” Dropping Almonds” by Bach Anon.

Yes, I could very well assume and understand the way you have expressed your views with concern, that you are not merely tired but “dead tired”. Americans had been tolerating the non-sense attitude of your government and its resultant cause and effect for quite some time, a government with out required level of accountability and responsibility by the people holding power duly elected, hand in glove with bureaucrats. Indeed a hapless and helpless condition to be endured by Americans (as no cure in vicinity as of now) and to continue to be under pathetic feelings with in owns US friends and out side friends.

All that I can do is to pray for all Americans:-

“May Jesus come down to USA to save its good citizens from the clutches of its unethical Rulers and bureaucrats".


Anonymous said...

My friend j.kannan,

Your words travel far across the oceans and continents. I believe that India has a site called infi-beam or something like it. Just Google Dropping Almonds and you'll find some international options.

I believe that my absentee ballot will show up this weekend for the 11/4 election. I may write in j.kannan or trevor gay for President.

Take care,


J.KANNAN said...

Thank you very much my dear Suomynona, for having taken me across the oceans and coninents- I feel Great with your words and 'am on TOW indeed.

I shall follow your tips for "Droppng Almonds" and revert to you.

Well my dear and beloved friend, if what you wish really happens and all US people think like you,USA citizens will face and feel radicle changes in their life and living for good, ridiculing the present bunch of Rulers and bureaucrats-That's why its not going to happen. Indeed too BAD for USA and its citizens.

Take care of yourself as either Obama or Mc Cain is going to be of any use to USA and its people. Just wait and experience it for yourself!!!!


Trevor Gay said...

Hi JK - this is the web page where I ordered my copy of 'Dropping Alonds.'

Hi Suomynona - I'm pretty sure JK would make a much better President than me!

J.KANNAN said...

Hi Trevor,

Thank you very much for the web link and for your inspiration. Well, I don’t promise to be a better president than you. But ‘am too happy that at least one honest and sincere citizen of USA have the extraordinary guts, strong backbone and steel nerves, with earnest desire, of a British National or Indian National as its head of the state. Well if this message is well conveyed and spread to all US people in the right perspective ‘am sure they will change their attitude and mind towards Britishers/Indians to govern and administer their nation, after all, all they need is economic stability through industry and commerce development and growth, social security and excellent international diplomatic relations with all countries.

Hi Soumyona,

In my previous comment I skipped to mention that you have made up your mind to reveal your identity from Anonymous. A very good indication for closer and useful future association.

Well my dear friend, given an opportunity to me in faculty campus of Harvard Biz School, ‘am confident of grooming and turning out “The best of talents” from USA, exclusively for governing and administration of USA in right direction for the betterment and benefit of its people and saving them from facing economic collapses in future, to take up the task and complete it. I bet I can do it and will take it up as a challenge. But the? Is who will bell the cat? I mean who will take up this pertinent issue with Harvard Faculty & US Govt.? And create an opportunity for me to enter their Faculty Campus to begin my great task and thereby fulfill the visions of Americans by and large and complete my mission, and ultimately “Almonds will drop” at the door step of each and every American’s dwelling door step, without they spending for it. The choice is yours “To Live in faith or Fallacy?”