The president of a student debt collections agency.
Lisa: How soon after you started the company, did you realize college costs were skyrocketing and how did you have to accommodate for that?
President: How it’s cost… Well, they’ve been… (trails off)
L: They’ve been skyrocketing the whole time?
P: Even compounding, they’ve been going … (trails off again) But if I am not mistaken, I think almost 2% per year for 15 years maybe I haven’t (starts audibly shuffling papers)… I’ll bet you right out of the gate they were … Actually, no, I never studied the numbers right there. Anecdotally, they were going up, but I don’t know what the percentage was. I knew they were going up. Lisa, this is before you were born.
L: Right, yeah.
P: What percentage rate were they going? I don’t know. They’ve been compounding it over 2% per year at least for shifting years or was it 2% or was it greater back then, I don’t know what specific percentage it was, but it’s been compounding, it’s been going up for as long as I had been in business.*
L: Okay. You knew going into it (business).
L: What community outreach are you involved with personally besides the company?
P: Well, my personal full answer would be those are my personal … Those things that I keep personal, those are my own.
[Off the record stuff]
P: My travel, I’m involved in my industry association and I’m politically active. My travel keeps me out of town on those associations.
P: I’m on the financial literacy initiatives from that perspective. I contribute here in terms of treasure, my time and talent is on my national association level.
P: Those are the three things the time, talent and treasure.
L: Yeah. What’s your day-to-day involvement with the company like?
P: Okay. My day-to-day, well, I have an A class executive team that is also a long time to developing. It’s kind of my foundation like the CN Tower to build more concrete underground and above ground, the foundation.
P: I spend time kind of I share how I think, but I don’t make decisions towards them.
P: They know what they do and I share what I think. My time is spent looking at what our consumers will look like in the year 2020. How would they want to talk to us? What will our customers be? What will they want? How will their needs change because they will dramatically change? Most of my time is spent looking at other things. I will share how I think with my A team today, but they are paid to make their day-to-day decisions. They know what their responsibilities are. Their job is to get things done.
L: What are some of your hobbies?
P: Well, I’ll tell you I like to read classic inspirational-type books like Horatio Alger stories or Earl Nightingale essays or Dave Barry books which just make me laugh so hard I cry.
P: I’m also a movie buff.
L:What was the last movie you saw?
P: Cop Car.
L: What are you reading right now?
P: I’m reading … I’m actually rereading Acres of Diamonds**.
*College inflation rates have been rising at an average rate of 7% per year for decades, often double or triple the general inflation rate.
**Excerpt: “I say that you ought to get rich, and it is your duty to get rich … The men who get rich may be the most honest men you find in the community. Let me say here clearly … ninety-eight out of one hundred of the rich men of America are honest. That is why they are rich. That is why they are trusted with money. That is why they carry on great enterprises and find plenty of people to work with them. It is because they are honest men. … I sympathize with the poor, but the number of poor who are to be sympathized with is very small. To sympathize with a man whom God has punished for his sins … is to do wrong. … Let us remember there is not a poor person in the United States who was not made poor by his own shortcomings…”