Monday, December 29, 2008

Common sense risk management

Just before Christmas I was searching for a gag gift for one of my friends. I was shopping with several adjusters, and adjusters and insurance professionals, generally speaking, have very twisted senses of humor. This probably arises as a coping mechanism for dealing with mutilation, foolishness and death on a daily basis. But I digress.

I found a book of postcards titled Grandma’s Dead: Breaking Bad News with Baby Animals. As we read through the postcards, and many of them were quite graphic, we laughed so heartily and for so long that other bookstore customers began to gather around to see what all the fuss was about. Let's face it, in these economic times, everyone is looking for a laugh.

In short, the book is a series of postcard pictures of beautiful baby animals with captions like “Recycling Won’t Work," "The Meteor Can't Be Stopped," or, one germane to this post, “There is no Santa Claus.” Some of the captions are in extremely poor taste, but some are downright hilarious. See a preview at

As I was zooming through a slideshow last night of the people and funds that were hit in the Madoff scandal, I couldn’t help but think of the old adage that rings true especially today: “If it looks to good to be true, it probably isn’t.” One of the fund victims stated that participants questioned why they were consistently achieving about 10 percent return on investment when the global financial markets were melting down. Now they know.

What can we learn from this tragic lesson, which has rocked both charities and personal fortunes and led, so sadly, to one apparent suicide? The lesson is simple, and it is in the book Grandma’s Dead: “There is no Santa Claus.”
Unfortunately, the impact of this crash is going to ruin many people’s holidays, probably for years to come.

If you are an agent and would like to help your commercial customers better manage their risk, refer them to my blog on at Each week I give tips to help small-to-medium sized businesses better manage their risks.

1 comment:

Robert@affordable term life insurance quote said...

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