And so we beat on, boats against the current

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Martin Moodie
Martin Moodie is the Founder & Chairman of The Moodie Report.

And so the curtain comes down on the extraordinary year that was 2008…

If it was the script for a film no-one would have believed it. A global banking system at one stage in apparent freefall and still in disarray; one of the world’s most respected bastions of the financial community exposed as a pyramid-building crook; the collapse of currencies, economies and businesses; an oil price that went off the Richter scale and then collapsed; thousands upon thousands of stranded leisure travellers brought home by ‘rescue flights’ – all were part of the mix 2008-style

For once our industry has a ‘crisis’ truly worthy of the name. The unprecedented economic events of 2008 have left virtually every executive I know in a state of bemusement. ‘Caution’ is the watchword I hear everywhere I go. Nobody but nobody knows quite how deep this thing will run.

And yet, as F Scott Fitzgerald wrote so beautifully, we have little choice but to “beat on, boats against the current, born back ceaselessly into the past”. At nostalgic moments, and none is more nostalgic than the end of a year, I often think of these words (written about Fitzgerald’s great, enigmatic creation Jay Gatsby). To me they evoke both the sense of journey that marks a life and the past that binds us – our roots, our families, our career paths, and those we have lost.

In 2009 we will indeed beat on, though the current will seem stronger than ever. Our role at The Moodie Report will be to narrate that difficult journey as well as to survive it ourselves and ultimately prosper.

We have already decided the principles that will guide us. They are the same ones that have taken us this far. We will continue to invest in people and principles; to believe in accuracy and quality and fairness; to continue to give back to those who need it; to act collectively as a company that stands for something as opposed to one that simply does something.

We face 2009 not with trepidation but with determination. As Scott Fitzgerald wrote: “Tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms further… and one fine morning…”

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