Was Poor Service at the Root of our Country’s Financial Crisis?

People defaulting on loans. Foreclosures. Tanking IRAs. Folks having to rethink their planned retirement age. The news talks about the intersection of Wall Street and Main Street. What about the intersection of integrity and good service? That’s a destination financial advisors and mortgage consultants didn’t stop on their way to the bank.

This mess we are in is because of poor service providers. These professional services providers didn’t understand their role in the client-provider relationship—to provide intelligent direction to people seeking their advice. Instead, they were afraid of losing business and afraid to say “NO.” And then Suzy (who makes $100,000/year and has a history of late car payments) got approved for a $650,000 mortgage. And Jon’s money was invested in bundles of these loans (including Suzy’s) with the promise that somehow, this time, all the Suzys would make their payments and Jon would make some money on his investment. It was reckless and it was irresponsible. It was poor service with the worst consequences.

If the mortgage consultants had been doing their job, they would have put the breaks on when loan applicants weren’t meeting the minimum requirements. After all, mortgage requirements are in place to protect us from ourselves! If people in the financial services industry had been providing great service, they would have been more consultative. They would have said “No” and this could have been avoided.

What do you think?

- Do you agree? Was poor service at the root of this financial crisis?

- Would you have been appreciative or disappointed if you got turned down for a loan that you couldn’t afford?

-Do you have an example of a professional services provider who didn’t fulfill their obligations to you?