I saw this “Beware of Rattlesnakes” sign when I was playing in a golf event with my new friend and banker Jean Perpich from Wells Fargo back in May. I had left Wells Fargo 8 years earlier when there was a significant misunderstanding with their risk management department and $85,000 of our course registrations. After collecting tens of millions of dollars in course registrations for my business over seven years, suddenly we were such a risk, they were going to hold this $85,000 for six months to make sure we delivered on the courses for which our students had registered. They did this while I was on vacation in Italy.
I came up with the idea to refund all of those students their money and re process their registrations through a different merchant account and settle it into a different bank. And thus, we ended our long term relationship with Wells Fargo. So what changed now eight years later that had me move our banking business back to Wells Fargo? Two things. First was a general dissatisfaction with the numerous other banks with which we had used since we left Wells Fargo. Several had gone under over night throwing our whole business into a scramble, others had archaic technology systems that made even simple banking activities exceptionally difficult. Besides the credit card fiasco and one other egregious incident, our relationship with Wells Fargo had gone extremely well. Next, Wells Fargo had just gone through a huge upheaval because of increasingly bad behavior and they were on a new path to remediate themselves. I figured now was a great time to give them another chance.
Taking another chance on Wells Fargo and meeting Jean Perpich has proven to be a good call. Jean stays on top of our accounts, periodically reaches out to me, introduces me to other business owners in town, and has been good counsel with handling the banking elements of the business. With banking these days, it can seem like it’s a pick your poison situation. There are rattlesnakes everywhere, it pays to know how to mitigate their dangers.