Every business—from the mom-and-pop shop to corporate America—will encounter some form of crisis during their operation. Crises come in all shapes and sizes, including employee malingering, internal theft, brand protection, and a myriad of lawsuits that could bring an established business to its knees. When disaster strikes, it is the reflex of most companies to handle the matter internally, often delaying important investigative measures out of uncertainty, ignorance on how to proceed, or both. While an internal investigation allows a company to control available information and minimize any consequences, an independent external investigation conducted by a private investigator is the best course when it comes to finding a comprehensive solution to any corporate crisis. The important thing to remember is you cannot wait when a crisis arises, and hiring a private investigator should be one of the first items on your to-do list.
Independent private investigatiors provide the best solutions from the onset of the investigation. Investigators too often run into roadblocks during investigations because they are working from a narrative and timeline that has already been established by an internal party. When you have a qualified and objective investigator handling the investigation from the beginning, it lays a solid foundation that will lead to credible leads, proper gathering of evidence, and quality conversations with potential witnesses.
During a fact-finding process, internal investigators may not have considered all angles and left many leads unexplored. Potential witnesses within the workforce need to be interviewed and their statements recorded, but an internal investigator—usually a Human Resources representative or upper management employee—may not have the qualifications. Any witness testimony may be tainted because the investigator is not properly trained in interview and rapport. Witness statements could also be false or inconsistent because they fear reprisal from an internal investigator who may have clout when it comes to the employee’s future at that business. When a private investigator is retained weeks after the onset of the investigation, witness’s memories may be inaccurate or even non-existent. In some cases, an employee may have already left the company, or changed addresses. This results in more investigative measures required to locate that employee, which costs money and labor hours to the investigator.
Witness statements are valuable, but not so much as hard evidence that cannot be interpreted for a particular spin. One common example is surveillance footage. An internal investigator may think to pull surveillance footage from a single camera near the site of the incident or crisis, but the investigator may not pull surveillance footage from other cameras that could contain valuable information. Most companies invest in security systems that recycles surveillance tape after a short period of time, sometimes as little as five days. Once an independent private investigator is retained, valuable footage is gone, and other fact-finding measures will be necessary—again, more time and money at the cost to the company.
It is possible for an internal investigation to play out smoothly—at least at first glance. Even if the internal investigator is well-qualified to conduct the investigation, there will always be the question of objectivity when dealing with an internal investigation. A successful investigation that concludes with the termination of an employee who was found to be at fault for the crisis or incident has the potential to result in legal action. In this example, it would be a wrongful-termination suit. When argued in a court of law, it’s easy for the terminated employee to cast doubt on their former employer by citing the investigation into their wrongdoing was conducted by an internal employee with a direct stake in the outcome. When a private investigator handles the investigation from beginning to end, there will never be a question of objectivity, because a private investigator’s task is to find the truth—not manufacture a solution that will mollify their client.
When your company encounters a crisis, do not hesitate to retain a private investigator to find a solution. The time and resources spent on an internal investigation may all be in vain when the chips are down. To protect your business and its profits, take immediate action when a corporate crisis arrives by retaining a private investigator that will provide you with the expertise and objectivity for a successful solution.
If your business has encountered a corporate crisis, call Lauth Investigations International today for a free consultation. Call 317-951-1100 or find us online at www.lauthinvestigations.com
When investing in a new market, there is always an inherent risk. However, when you are doing business in an emerging market, this risk is amplified greatly, as is the feeling of uncertainty you may have before taking the plunge. There are a lot of reasons why emerging markets are attractive right now: with the globalized world, increasing your reach to be more international is a strategic and sometimes necessary move. Emerging markets can often offer you with economic opportunities that are unheard of domestically, and offer you somewhat uncharted territory to expand and grow. However, in doing this, there are a lot of things to take into consideration. You need to know what exists already in the market, what your contribution is going to signify, and, perhaps most importantly, who you are working with.
Emerging markets, including Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Hungary, Indonesia, India, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Russia, South Africa, Thailand and Turkey, offer great opportunities. However, when it comes to entering into business with someone who already lives or works in the emerging market in question, or investing in these foreign stock markets, there are obvious questions that arise. First of all, this person is possibly not from the same culture, and does not conduct business the same way. Second, this person is assumed to be physically far from you, so the ability to work with them face-to-face may be impossible. Third, because of the different laws, processes, and infrastructure in the foreign country, it may be harder for you to “check out” the person properly before you begin working.
This is why so many people turn to private investigators to help them research their potential partners before entering into an emerging market. This blog post outlines 3 specific things that a private investigator can help you discover and understand before going into business with someone- things you probably cannot figure out for yourself.
- Is Your Plan Really Possible?
Sometimes we have an idea, and it seems possible, and even plausible, because we are working on incorrect context. Unfortunately, this is often the case with people who want to invest in emerging markets. We often think that we have an understanding of how life and business works in a foreign place, but in reality, we are acting on stereotypes or misconceptions. Something that a private investigator can help you do is to give you appropriate context to decide if an investment is actually a good idea. A PI that specializes in the region you are hoping to invest can give you an idea of how things work in the area, and how the reality might be different from your ideas or preconceptions. Common misconceptions could be:
-What government of the country you are hoping to invest in is like, and how it might interfere with your plans.
-Whether or not outside investors will be allowed to participate in the investment at all.
-How the foreign currency operates and how it will hold up in the future.
- Is the Deal What You Really Think It Is?
Another issue when it comes to doing business in an emerging market is communication. In order to make a smart and productive decision, you need to have access to all of the necessary information to make sure you know exactly what you are getting into. This can be difficult in countries that have less resources available. An emerging market country may have loose accounting standards and less publicized information in general, which will make getting the information you need more difficult. In addition to that, the information may be in a different language, and will be according to the laws and codes of that specific country. All of these differences can add up and make it very difficult to get the information you need quickly and efficiently in a standard investment.
Communication issues are prevalent even in situations where everything is correct, but in the case that you are faced with a fraudulent or corrupt investment, it is even more difficult to discover the fraud because of all of these practical differences between countries. This is why many people hire a private investigator before making a decision in an emerging market, to protect their assets and make sure they know exactly who and what they are working with.
- Is the Market Really There For You?
Lastly, many people make mistakes in emerging market deals because they overestimate the opportunity that is available in the market. Most of the time, this means that people are choosing the wrong time to invest. Emerging markets follow very different trends than stocks in developed countries, and you need to be sure that what looks like a good investment actually is. Getting stuck with an investment that quickly falls apart, or one that you have a hard time liquidating in the future, can be just as deadly to your prospects as getting involved in business with a corrupt investor. This is why it is always best to hire a private investigator that specializes in emerging market analysis before you invest.
If you are looking for a PI to help you make your emerging market investment decisions, consider Lauth Investigations. You can learn more here!