I believe in living without regrets. Not an easy life motto.
As we get older, we tend to look back with rose colored glasses at periods we consider “the best of times”. Inevitably, we think… “If I could go back in time, I would go back to…”
If I could go back, I always thought I would be 19 again and a Sophomore/Junior in college.
At 19, I had it all. I was living in the dorms, working part time and going to school. My parents were still paying most of my basic expenses and tuition. I thought I was as grown up as I could ever be. In reality, I had just enough responsibility to think I was invincible and not quite enough to do any long term damage (thank goodness). I was “on my own” like a grown up and yet, I never had to worry that the power would be turned off if I was not responsible with my money (and, oh, I was not responsible with my money). The dreaded phrase, “Just wait until you are in the real world” infuriated me. My world was real and I had it by the tail!
I always thought those were the best of times.
In hindsight, decades later, those times lacked accountability.
Being accountable for our choices and behavior is hard work.
I have long maintained that Factoring is not rocket science. It is not a horribly complex form of finance. There are, however, many moving parts to keep track of in every transaction. It all comes down to accountability.
As a Factor, we are accountable to our investors, bankers, clients, account debtors (customers of our clients), partners and colleagues. I also believe that we are accountable to the industry as a whole, to present the product in a way that is not cloaked in secrecy or shame. When we started LDI, there were few absolutes. We did know that we could not expect more of people than we were willing to expect of ourselves. We also knew that there was an under-served market for our service and that market was under-served because of a lack of understanding rather than a lack of willingness or need.
Most importantly, we knew that we had to be able to sleep at night and to do that in a business with this much risk meant we had to always, always be willing to be accountable and transparent (wait until I get to “T”) for every choice, good and bad, we made along the way.
We have made great choices.
We have made horrible choices.
We own every single one of them.
I can honestly say that today, right now, is the “best of times”. This is the real world. I still have it by the tail!
It is liberating and powerful, this accountability stuff.