The personal challenge for me as The Asian Banker grows has been to keep a balance between my role as someone running an international business and as a commentator on the industry.
I owe it to the industry and to myself to use all the access I have to key players, in Asia as well as globally, to provide my thoughts and reactions as quickly as they are formed.
Strange as it may sound, writing on a formal basis makes me disruptive to my own organisation. Our various editors for the print and online publications as well as our research staff would kill me with their bare hands if I made crazy last minute suggestions based on my many clever but ill-timed and highly disruptive insights.
So, I have settled for this most uncorporate of devices – a blog – to write what I want, when I want to and how I want to. You will find that my ideas on banking are often thrown in together with my experience of life itself, which I can assure you, is much and varied. You won't be bored. But yes, I will spare you the sordid details of my own life, which are mostly irrelevant to the plot.
Whenever people ask me why did I start something on banking, my answer was always "because it is a cathedral industry". Like a cathedral, it is the industry that sits in the middle of town and everybody pretty much has to deal with a bank at some point in their lives. So, my observations about banking are also about my observations about people in the different countries, about economies, about governments, about lifestyles, about aspirations… I think you get the drift.
The fact that I cover the financial services industry right across Asia, from Japan to Australia, from the Philippines to Afganistan and everything in between, is still exciting to me after all these years. But my observations today also include waitresses in great restaurants, irritating investment bankers who show off their boarding passes when they get upgraded to first class next to paying passengers and great train rides in the simplest parts of the world. Writing a blog will help me keep the creative side by not being bogged (if you don't mind the pun) down with form or substance.
I am also irrepresibly irreverent. So, do expect me to write plainly and write plainly back to me. Let's see how this develops. Cheers, ED
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