There are two ways to resolve an issue: the easy way and the hard way. The easy way includes upfront-work, planning, proactively doing the right thing, conducting due diligence, testing proof statements, and evaluating propositions based on evidence, legal precedents and ethical guidelines. The hard way usually means just blundering forward on wishful thinking and accepting the consequences on the back-end when things don’t work out.
Last week’s big news in economic and fiduciary news was the settlement agreement between Wells Fargo bank and the government, specifically the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Wells Fargo is facing a firestorm stemming from “unrealistic sales goals” which spurred “orchestrated scheme” of millions of fake accounts inside a culture of fraud. According to their press release, Wells Fargo is installing “substantial investments in enhanced monitoring, controls, and team member training” to try and correct the problems with incentives and corporate culture. In the meantime, their credibility has been tested and they’ll pay the consequences. Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf was in front of Congress yesterday talking about what his company will have to do to regain trust. This is what learning the hard way looks like.