Successfully running a large, complicated business in the financial sector is no small feat, and daily challenges can be extremely demanding enough on their own, so it’s no small wonder that it can be extremely frustrating while the authorities give you yet more regulations to adhere to. It can feel like they’re just a faceless entity making new rules for new rules’ sake and complicating your operations for no reason.
But the truth is, the authorities are made up of real people that are part of the same society as you, and the regulations they create are in not only your businesses’ best interest but of everyone’s.
By applying this philosophy to the way you look at regulatory change, you can actually better predict what new rules will be coming your way and move your business into operation proactively and not exclusively responsively.
You can use this mentality to get ahead of the curve.
Understanding What Regulations Really Are
The first step in adopting this mentality shift is understanding what regulations really are. Not the fine print or the nuts and bolts language the lawyers help with but what they are as a concept.
Regulations are a formalized version of what people – and your clients – want.
Regulations are not created in a vacuum with the purpose of complicating your life; they are a reflection of what the public wants. Be it through social pressure or through their representatives in government and parliament, regulations are born from the people’s will. It’s also fair to note that employees of the financial industry are also just ordinary people and very much part of this society. We all want to know our money and investments are safe and being cared for by businesses that care for society and the environment sustainably.
On top of this, the process of formalizing generic trends and rules is complicated, and the people that try and do this are themselves doing their best to find the right balance between keeping the industry safe and free. If you pay attention, however, you can spot trends in how regulations are formulated.
Twenty years ago, they tended to be very rule-based, and more recently, we’re seeing them becoming more principle-based with follow-up guidelines that set the rules regarding their application.
With this truth in mind, we can better predict what kinds of regulations are coming our way, and in turn, we can set our businesses up to more easily comply with them.
Long-Term Trend-Spotting and Overall Vision is the Key to Easier Compliance
If we accept that regulations are organic movements that reflect the peoples’ will and indeed follow trends, we can apply it and predict what is coming next.
We’re seeing now the themes of social and environmental responsibility to be not only popular now but gaining steam. Therefore, making sure your business’s vision is clear and having values that are honest and good, complying with regulations will be much easier. We can see the applications of this, for example, when looking at a bank’s data practices. The average consumer will likely not care about the ins and outs of their bank’s data practices. Still, they will absolutely expect them to be able to answer “what happened to my money?” and to give a satisfactory answer, we know that you would have needed to have high-quality data of their transactions, advice given, etc.
A financial industry that operates with a social-conscience heart – that’s not just consumer-facing – will simply have an easier time complying while the trend remains principle-based.
All of this, of course, is easier said than done – but helping banks comply is our specialty.
We help our clients create and align their visions to their policies and therefore make compliance to current and up-coming regulations smoother and faster.
We help them answer questions like:
What is the essence of the service offered to clients?
What would you want the financial institution to do (in the long term) if you were the client?
Do we have sufficient (qualitative and quantitative) arguments to show we care?
Looking back in 10 years, would we be proud to have helped society in some way and be praised for it?
We go through these and many more questions with our clients designed to help businesses define and live by meaningful values that naturally make compliance easier.
As always, thanks for reading, and get in touch if you’d like to know more about our process anything else.
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