A Fish Rots From the Head:: a commentary on Corporate culture

Is it any wonder that, when you glimpse “behind the curtain” of many institutions, trust is at an all time low!? It also explains why TRANSPARENCY is viewed as a threat rather than as an opportunity.

We know bankers are easy targets but they are not alone. What about their poor relations in the good old insurance industry? Despite the usual TALK about professionalism and the need for change the stench of insincerity serves as a warning that extends far beyond the reaches of enormous marketing budgets and relentless sales campaigns!!!

I am sure that readers will be readily able to attribute some of the characteristics to organisations past and, more worryingly, present. I can think of some individuals and firms within the insurance about whom this could have been written…but there is no need to name names, is there?

What I want to hear about are the insurance leaders with a burning desire to be the best that they can be for ALL of their stakeholders and aren’t afraid to demonstrate belief in their core values. If this is you, or if you know of someone about who this could be said, I would delight in creating the Operational Structure to deliver far greater, sustainable, returns than will be achieved by an army of soulless salespeople. Read more of this post

Tempus fugit:: Extreme Risks update [report from Towers Watson]

Towers Watson are doing some sterling work at the minute whilst others appear content to believe that the future will closely resemble the past…strange, when you consider how much the world has changed in the last 20 years, let alone the last century! As the Founder and CTO of Ontonix, Dr Jacek Marczyk, put it:

“Running a company based on just the financials is like driving a car by only looking at the rear view mirror!”

This statement can be readily adapted to apply to classical economics, credit and risk rating (& modelling) that have been shown to be “deeply flawed”. Compounded by an unchanged culture and utilisation of risk management tools and techniques (from the Industrial era) that have failed, so spectacularly, in the Digital Age.

We “know”: about the differences between risk and uncertainty: that interconnected entities present a very different probability distribution; about “Black Swans” and low probability/high impact events; the threat of “systemic risk” is significant and straddles domains as readily as it transcends “scales” (micro to macro), business sectors and national borders; that, in the face of uncertainty, we NEED to (re)build RESILIENCE…

Regrettably, the common approach (particularly in Financial Services) seems to be to overlook the inconvenient truth

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