Friday, February 11, 2005

Problem Solver

I have a new idea for a freelance position, borne out of myriad failed job interviews and a compulsive need to perfect the world. See, interview after interview, my prospective employer gives me some idea of what the company does and how they do it, and, invariably, the company screws up their product or service in some blatantly obvious way. I want to save my good examples of this for some other time, but here's a lousy example of what I'm talking about. I interviewed at this place called Forex Capital Markets. They make software that allows your average Joe Bag-o'-Donuts to gamble away his life savings in the international currency market, trading dollars for Swiss francs or Euros for yen. It's a great idea, or at least a great concept, opening up a new segment of the economy to folks who'd traditionally been excluded. There's just one teeny-tiny problem, which you might have caught onto if you tried to muddle your way through Forex's explications of margins and dealing spreads — the currency market is absolutely inscrutable without a master's in economics.

And like I've said before, most Americans couldn't tell the stock market from a flea market.

Just an example. So here's my idea. It's a sort of consulting thing; companies hire me as a problem-finder and, for a modest fee, I'll point out every one of their inconsistencies, inefficiencies, and just plain thick-headed business practices. I'll even try to solve some of their problems, but, truth be told, I imagine I'll be enjoying the complaining and criticizing parts of the job than I'll enjoy fixing things.

Anyway, if you want me to come criticize you or your business, send along an email. First complaint free.