This morning I was listening to an interview with the guy running Barclays Bank. They have just released their yearly profit information and they were down about 5 Billion from last year, mainly because they have had to put massive amounts in reserve to pay compensation for mis-selling of financial products to people who didn't need them.
When asked if he thought that his bank should sell a product to someone who didn't need it he replied that they absolutely should not and that he would have a big problem with anyone he thought was doing that.
He also announced some major restructuring, bonus reductions and that they'll be making a lot of people redundant as they close down sections of their business where the 'problem' activities had been happening before.
I've had many conversations with IMer over the years about what type of products we as IMers should sell and what our responsibility is for whether those products actually help anyone or not and I've been surprised at just how many people in IM have no interest in whether the products they sell actually help anyone. It seems that how much money they make, what their conversion statistics are, and how many JV partners they can get are all way more important than the concept of whether their customers need or will benefit from what they are selling.
Should we be more like Barclays and be cleaning up our house?