THE BANK RUN – A True Story
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Back in the old days, Equitable Bank in Chinatown was in the middle of a bank run from panicky clients. They were pouring in, demanding to withdraw all their money before the cash runs out. They had to close the doors as the unruly mob was getting out of hand. How do you turn panic into calm? That was the dilemma of the founder, the legendary Go Kim Pah.
Go Kim Pah thought for awhile, then, without hesitation, gave the order for all the bank’s cash to be placed on the counter, three feet high, six feet wide, three feet deep. He told his entire staff it was important to keep calm and smile, as these were contagious. Then they opened the doors. The angry mob poured in, then froze as soon as they saw the mountain of cash. There was an announcement requesting the people to please fall in line, saying all withdrawals will be honored. Slowly, the crowd vanished. Panic turned into calm instantly.
It is important to understand the power of communication that can stop a stampede in the blink of an eye. Always go for the heart to correct the illusion of the mind. It is like a goon approaching. Everyone backs away, except a child who intuitively knows what to do. She simply smiles and says ‘hi’ to the goon, and he is a goon no more. Smiles melt hearts and, like panic, are extremely contagious. Cold cash is the same, capable of turning fear into calm instantly. It takes wisdom (the cash) and courage (the smile) to turn a storm into a breeze.
By Bernie V. Lopez,
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