Never give in to blackmail

It is time our overpaid bureaucrats in Whitehall learned how to manage people. One of the most important rules is, “never allow yourself to be blackmailed”. I figured this one out very early on, without all the consultants and career development programs all these people get at the tax payer’s expense.

One day a key employee walked into my office and asked to have a private word. He had been offered another job, but …. The message was clear – a nice pay rise added to a short term bonus and perhaps …. I swallowed hard, got up, stuck out my hand and congratulated him with his new position. Then I proceeded to tell him that if he ever felt he was undervalued, to come in and talk to me, but never, ever try to blackmail me. The employee left my office but never left my company.

Now let us look at our friends at Royal Bank of Scotland. Let us not forget that this highly paid talent also managed to engineer possibly the largest economic fiasco since the tulip bulb crisis. These are the people who put together the deal to do the biggest bank acquisition in history only to find out that the value was not there and lost it again. Really incredible talent!

The cleverest thing they have done is using depositor money to bankrupt the nation and then use tax payer money to shore it all up again. And now they need a bonus or else they will go elsewhere. Ladies and gentlemen of the Board – take my advice, accept their resignations. And whilst you are at in Gordon and friends, accept the resignation of the Board.

The final outcomes are simple if you take my advice:

  1. In the worst case they leave and you are spared redundancy costs. Some of these overvalued gamblers may go elsewhere and they will continue to win some and lose some, but at least it will not be gambling our money. You can focus on doing what you should do – banking!
  2. In the best case they will get the message. The message is that we do value good people, we just do not value blackmailers in our companies. We also do not value gambling away the economy. The whole team will start to understand that they are supposed to be bankers and are expected to behave in an honourable way.

Either way, RBS will come out stronger and take the first step towards creating value again and possibly even values. Give in to the blackmail and take the next step towards complete breakdown of any values you thought you ever had.

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