The 80/20 rule and how that applies to our banks, and why we keep allowing their abuse.

Some numbers are always disturbing, because we usually do not want to know about them. The most favorite, that rules almost everyone’s daily life is the 80/20 rule; On average, a person produces 80% of it’s activity in 20% of the time. Or, in other words, at work you do 4 days worth of work on Monday. It doesn’t mean of course you are only active on Monday, but there are 8 hours in a 40-hour work week that delivers most of your productivity.

But the more scarier element that fits the 80/20 rule is that 80% of all the people are not able to take a decision completely on their own judgment. This means that in any election about 80% do let the media, or preachers influence their opinion so much, that they base their vote completely on this, without it being influenced by their own opinion.

Keeping this in mind, it is not strange that usually in any large corporation, about 80% of the employees are the workforce, and 20% are in a leading-role, someway or another.

This does not say anything about someone’s personality. For example, it is known that many of the real leaders in the (corporate?) world are also showing quite some signs of sociopathy. And personally I think, it should be like that. A real leader of a large business that also involves taking difficult decisions, should by a bit disconnected with social life. How else could you fire a large portion of your workforce if you are trying to stay friends with everyone and not lose sight of the goal of the company.

I have had to fire people three times in my career, and hated every single time doing it. I can run my own little company, where the collaboration is still on a personal level. But simply decide on someone’s future in a split second is not for me. But, the good come with the bad I guess. It is a responsibility that I guess comes with the job.

But then, people in those jobs are expected to behave like that. You don’t want to see Steve Jobs mourning over anteannagate, or Steve Ballmer over Vista. They should be disconnected from emotions and do what they need to do; run a financially successful company. If you like it or not, that is the role of a CEO. A commercial company has no right of existence if it is not able to turn a profit. If a commercial company creates loss after loss, the company’s future is diving 6 feet under.

Except… my favorites… the banks. So, let me recap very quickly before I bring everything together underneath the equal divider: Banks. 80% of the people are not able to make a self-influenced decision and leaders of commercial companies should be a bit sociopathic.

Hello bank! And let me direct it immediately to Chase bank, my favorite. True, I started out as a happy customer, but I think I have been able to formulate my own decision here. I have already did proof once here that Chase (but also your own bank) is allowed to cancel your credit-cards without reason and without you falling behind on payments or having a negative change in your credit history.

Now, Chase is using two more things that should really make you worry: Double Pending and Future Checks.

Let me start with Double Pending. Recently, Chase bank has included a new thing to make a lot of money. When you make a debit-card payment, say at a gas station, there is asked if there is a reserve amount available. Like, let’s say $50. You fill up the tank, and the final amount seems to be $43. What used to be normal is that the $43 would be deducted from your account in pending until the payment went through.

But nowadays, Chase is allowed to deduct the reserved amount andthe actual amount in pending. Yes. They actually put $93 in pending payments. The good news is of course that once the payment went through the whole pending time-frame, only the $43 will be deducted from your account. But in the meantime, before that actually happens, the $93 will be taken out of your account. This means that if you have $60 in your account and you fill her up for $43, $93 will be put in pending and you willend up temporarily at at -$33, leaving you in the goodwill of the bank to charge you with overdraft protection fees or not.

I had this actually happening with me last week while booking a return ticket from New York to Seattle, later this month, and Chase deducted $800 in pending payments, while the tickets were $400. A quick phone-call to Continental airlines quickly showed that they did not make a mistake, which was verified by the single verification email I had received. But suddenly I noticed this new addition to the ‘pending’ description on the Chase website, describing clearly in the fine print that they are now allowed to deduct the reserved amount and the actual amount of a payment for an undefined period of time.

Then there is the Future Check, which is actually a nice one too, which you can try all by yourself. First of all, drive up to an ATM machine and use the new check-deposits. Forget to endorse the check and deposit it. If you try this at the register, you will be asked to sign it before depositing it. But, like magic, you can deposit a check without any problems and without any endorsement. It will be in your account tomorrow.

Now try another thing; give a check which signed date is next week, or even better, next year. Even this is not handled anymore. To make sure two payments were spread equally through the month, I provided two checks to someone, one marked this week, one marked in two weeks. This person accidentally deposited both checks at the same time, and they both were deducted at the same time. So these last two paragraphs already completely show that two security elements of a check (the date and the endorsement) are completely ignored by banks.

I have found my new bank. This was the final straw. And that combined with the new commercial Chase aires on the television now, telling everyone how they help rebuilding the economy of america with all the goodwill in the world. Yeah, right. But there comes in the 80/20 rule. They say it in a commercial, and 80% of the people will feel better about a bank like Chase and will actually flock to them or not leave them. And I am just a single preacher here, so my reach is not that of national television. But maybe I reach one or two people out there. And I am not asking to leave Chase, but I do ask you to make sure what your bank is doing and if it is right for you. Because those people running banks are just running commercial companies, which are set to make a profit… and they will. And if they do not care about their workforce as employees, how can you expect them to care about a small time checking-account holder who is fighting the bad economy on his/her own?


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