From time to time I go looking for events where I might learn something new and get a different perspective. I also try to combine going to these events with meeting a friend, so we can discuss the subject. The LSE provides some great events and attracts interesting speakers. I try to avoid famous politicians as they tend to only say what we have already heard. I look out for people with expertise and something to say. Especially if it is about something I know little about.
Last night I went to hear Timothy Massad who has been on the front line of the U.S. effort to combat the financial crisis and reform the international financial regulatory system. He was appointed by President Obama as Chairman of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission and was formerly as Assistant Secretary for Financial Stability at the U.S. Treasury. However, President-elect Trump will replace him as is customary with a new president.
Henry Tapper came with me and we discussed the event over dinner. Henry is a campaigner for better pensions and for fairer treatment for customers. He knows everyone in the pensions world and blogs frequently click here. Henry works with First Actuarial and created Pensions Playpen helping firms with auto enrolment
He wrote about the event and our discussion click here
Timothy Massad taught me just how much work had been done to improve regulation, stabilise markets after the financial crisis and how these interventions had underpinned the recovery. I was struck by his integrity and commitment and believed him. He is clearly one of the much criticised Obama liberal elite. It also struck me regulators could do with a marketing or PR department as they do useful work and nobody understands the value they provide. His work is quite technical but he explained it well. I am sure we the public do not understand just how much was done to keep the economy on the rails and to underpin the growth.
In discussion with Henry, this somehow moved on to the subject of productivity and its importance in bringing the benefits of economic growth to the wider population. We are in times where many people feel left out, ignored and undervalued.I have always argued that the most productive businesses are the ones that really improve products and really help customers. Productive businesses provide something customers need or solve a problem for customers rather than just trying to sell what they have already got. These are also the businesses people want to work in
People are happiest working in businesses that are growing and that do something useful and valuable. I have always argued that the most productive businesses are the ones that really improve products and really help customers. Productive businesses provide something customers need or solve a problem for customers rather than just trying to sell what they have already got. These are also the businesses people want to work in they are fun places to work.
Between us, we came up with the theme Disrupt, Produce Fulfil. This is what great businesses do. It is what we need to do to attract more customers, attract better staff and deliver better products. Henry and I are meeting on Friday to scope out a public event where we explore and discuss this further with experts and an audience. More on that later…