Archive for the ‘Credit Control’ Category

The Ethics of Business?

April 15, 2019

This was an impressive new venture with some good backers and people involved.

Let’s take the meeting.

These guys were launching a new App and they needed a Marketing and PR Plan to help them – we had our briefing meeting with them, getting stuck into the detail so that we had a deep understanding of their requirements.

We did our research and the team went to work developing a detailed plan for them, one which would achieve their objectives.

We met the guys and presented our plan, which they loved and they gave us the green light to proceed.

We were thrilled with the client win and to be working on such a new and exciting venture, so we handed it to our accounts guy to draw up the contract and ‘lock in’ invoicing and payment arrangements.


The guys would not be in a position to pay the monthly bill on receipt of an invoice at the end of the month as their funding would not be through at that stage. They would not be in a position to pay for three months.

This was really disappointing as it was the first time we heard that there would be an issue with payment. It strangely never came up in the briefing meeting!

Solution – At this stage we had a lot of work done, we were really enthusiastic about the project so as long as funds could be guaranteed we would live with the delay.

Problem number 2 !!

The guys now shared with us that funds were not in place and they were still in a pitching phase, so three months was just an estimate, which they were quite confident about but they could not guarantee with any certainty.

Solution 2 – Taking a huge leap of faith in them we offered to proceed with the work as long as we would get a Personal Guarantee to ensure that we would be paid.

What do you think happened next?

It turns out that these guys were not prepared to provide us with a personal guarantee and instead wanted us to bear all of the risk of our arrangement with them.

In effect they were quite happy entering an arrangement with us knowing that there was a good chance we would not get paid for months or at all.

Furthermore, it turns out they were hoping that we would have more faith in their project than they had themselves so as you can imagine we had no option but to walk away from the work, despite having done lots at this stage.


You meet all types in business but you do hope that the vast majority of them will be honest and honourable and you have to try your best to protect yourself to ensure that you don’t fall prey to the chancers, and we have met quite a few in our time.

The really worrying aspect to this “transaction” was that these young guys who are starting out on their entrepreneurial journey with credible backers/advisors, already have a belief that this is all a game and a perfectly acceptable way to deal with people.

This might be the way that new business is now being conducted but..

Don’t be anyone’s fool..


Greg Canty is a Partner of Fuzion Communications, a full service Marketing, PR and Graphic Design agency with offices in Dublin and Cork, Ireland


Pillars of Society to be exposed?

June 23, 2015


I knew something was wrong with my buddy. I had known this for a while as he just hadn’t been his normal colourful, jovial full of beans, self.

I’ll tell you another time” was what I got from him the few times I pushed to figure out what was wrong.

Eventually he started to open up “I’ve really messed up, I’ve been an awful fool” he began.

I’ve lent the guys some money to help them keep things afloat before they bring in investors and I’m starting to get worried that I won’t get it back“. He was talking about the two guys he was working for.

It might sound totally off the wall that an employee would lend his employers money for their business but this was just typical of him.

In truth he can’t “work for anyone“. He gives everything 1,000% as he has done in every aspect of his life for as long as I have known him. He is passionate, he takes ownership and he gives absolutely everything to things and people he cares about. In this case this unrivalled passion had out him and his family in a very vulnerable position.

Early days

To be honest I was surprised and concerned when I heard he was working with this crew as in the trade they always had quite a poor reputation for not paying their bills etc.

I mentioned these rumours to him when he took the job but he was convinced that they were legit and while they had cash flow problems it was because they had overextended themselves (just like half the business people in the country). He felt they were good guys underneath it all and he was going to do everything to help them pull through this challenging time.

As usual he gave this job everything, hardly ever taking a day off and as always working every spare minute – I was worried that he would burn himself out. During the course of his time working there he introduced me and I got to know the two guys he worked for, one in particular. They were quite open about how thrilled they were with my friend and the job he was doing for them but they were also concerned that he was doing too much.

Waiting on investment

As mentioned earlier it turns out that besides working every hour that god sends he also lent them a significant amount of money – they were about to bring in an investor into part of the business and a deal was supposed to be close. However the cash flow situation was critical so they needed emergency funds to tide the business over until this deal was over the line – without these funds there was a risk that the business would literally implode. The banks were in no mood to lend money.

On this basis he lent them personal money to help tide them over until the date when the investment money came through – of course this was crazy but if my buddy believes in something or someone he would do anything to help them.

It started with a relatively modest amount of money – the investment process was delayed so more was required. There were further delays so even more was required and this went on and on for months. In the end it accumulated to quite a huge sum, enough to buy a house – at this stage he was virtually putting in money to protect the money he had already put in or else all would be lost.

Deal done

Eventually the investors insisted on a 100% buyout and a deal was done, much to the relief of my buddy. Unfortunately at this point in time his relationship with his bosses had broken down, primarily because of this money situation and when he looked for the return of this nothing was forthcoming.

I even jumped into the middle of this situation to see if I could do anything by way of mediation as I could see this situation getting very nasty – while they acknowledged to me that they owed him the money they insisted that they were not in a position to repay it and could only manage this over a period of more than 10 years.

My buddy who bailed out these “friends” with his own personal nest-egg was now totally caught and had to resort to the courts to force the return of his money.

Pillars of Society

In my view what happened next was one of the most despicable, disgusting things that I have ever witnessed in business.

These “friends” that he literally tried to save were now denying that they ever received any money, they went on to discredit the job he did, they called his character into question, they accused him of ruining their business, they accused him of turning up for work drunk (this man didn’t have a minute to relax and have a drink!) and they accused him of putting them in fear of their lives.

I can see the deep hurt, stress, pain and worry that this has been caused to my buddy and his family – he was prepared to do anything for these modern day businessmen, his “friends” and this is what he got in return.

Not only did they take his money but they were now trying to rob every inch of his character and his reputation.

These are respected businessmen in the community with one holding a very prestigious position in a national members organisation: Pillars of our Society!

While this story is unbelievable I have sadly witnessed lots of similar stories (admittedly, none quite as nasty and as horrible as this one) where great, honest people have been taken advantage of by people with no scruples and no morals who feel this is all ‘just business‘.


My buddy has no choice but to take this case all the way to the courts and I sincerely hope that these ‘pillars of society‘ will be exposed for everyone’s benefit and that my friend and his family will get their hard earned nest-egg back.

Unfortunately they have taken much more than his money and someone who would do anything for anyone will no longer be quite the same.

I hope justice will finally be done..

Greg Canty

Note: 24th July, 2016 

After publishing this post originally I had second thoughts as I felt it might upset my buddy and his family so I put the post to sleep.

I’ve since reflected on this and feel it is better that we talk about these things as we must all do our utmost to make sure that people in business behave properly, with morals and scruples.

Ironically after putting this blog post “to sleep” I received a letter from the solicitor who was representing these two guys instructing me to remove my blog post (it obviously got to them – I hope they read it properly and had an opportunity to reflect on their actions) as it was defamatory against his clients.

I politely responded to their solicitor indicating that the post was not ‘live‘ and that even if it was there was no mention of them anywhere so it could not be defamatory. If they recognised themselves in the post that’s not really my issue.

I love how people like this think that they can behave appallingly and then if anyone says anything bad about their behaviour they jump up and down feeling that they are the ones who have been wronged!!

If you wish to read more about defamation and protecting your reputation check out a post I wrote on this very topic.

Greg Canty 

Greg Canty is a Partner of Fuzion who offer Marketing, PR, Graphic Design services from our offices in Dublin and Cork, Ireland





Is your credit controller losing you business?

July 29, 2013

Dirty Harry

Collecting money from customers must be one of the toughest and most awful jobs that you have to do in business.

I remember when I was in the drinks industry years ago we had a full time credit controller and I really believe that the nature of her role made her age really quickly. She was the one who had to stop deliveries to slow paying accounts (often this meant a battle with the sales reps and the sales manager) and she had to deal with irate customers.

The poor woman was sick quite a lot and I really put this down to the stressful role she had.

In particular in a small business it can be even more difficult when often the person who does the selling is the same person that does the collecting.

We received an email last week from a supplier who was looking for payment. Payment ran a few days over the standard terms because I was on leave and hadn’t left enough signed cheques. This was no bother and we sorted a cheque out immediately, a few days later than usual.

What really bothered me was the nature of the email, the tone, the lack of manners and a total lack of respect for us – after all we are a customer and to be honest a good one who gives them plenty of business and we do adhere to the payment terms.

My gut reaction was to change suppliers, which I did not do. However, a phone call from a similar supplier pitching their wares at the right moment and I would be listening actively.

I Love Credit ControlThis email was a real pity because the supplier is generally great to deal with. My crew are forever praising them and I know would kill me if I dropped them to use someone else.

I sent the credit controller an email and politely took issue with her manner and explained how it does jeopardise the business that they are doing with us and probably other customers of theirs.

I was speaking to another business owner who explained to me that they have an automated “email writing” system to deal with their credit control. He says often people get irate about the emails they receive because the language used is very blunt and to the point.

I received an automated letter from my bank recently more or less telling me to get my accounts in order as a dormant current account had run €2.50 overdrawn as a result of bank charges ..lovely!

How you collect money is an essential  part of your business reputation and while you have to get paid for the work you do it is important that you do this with courtesy and manners, never undermining your good reputation and all of your hard work.

You don’t need to give any customer an excuse to consider moving to a competitor.

Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion

Fuzion are a Marketing, PR and Design firm in Ireland with offices in Cork and Dublin

Credit Control Warrior – Explained

July 24, 2012
Credit Control Warrior - Greg Canty

The Warrior !

This is just a quick note to explain what has happened to the “Credit Control Warrior” and the blog post that I had on this personal blog site regarding the very sensitive issue of getting paid by certain debtors.

The Credit Control Warrior is still alive and well but I have been asked to temporarily take the post down as it is the subject of a court case – it turns out that someone who owes us a lot of money seems to identify themselves with one of the characters in the post and was not happy about it.

If you haven’t read the post it was written in a very upset state after someone who owed us a lot of money laughed in my face when I looked for payment after finally tracking him down after a lot of dodging.

I didn’t think it was as funny as he did – upset, yeah …I was!

As always I will continue to write about the “stuff” that motivates, inspires, enthuses and bothers me and share any experiences that I may feel could be useful to anyone reading.

In the meantime thank you for reading!

Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion