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What are your corporate treasury mantras?

Martin Lewis, the UK’s MoneySavingExpert, has made himself very rich by writing about how to be sensible and giving all sorts of money saving tips. He encourages his readers to “stop spending when you shouldn’t.” His wallet size Money Mantra Card is designed to be “whipped out” out before you buy:

Source & Copyright©2018 - MoneySavingExpert

He recommends that if you answer No to any question then don’t buy. He believes that “the most difficult to self-assess is "will I use it?", which examines what economists call 'opportunity cost'. In other words: could you get better use or more pleasure out of the same cash by buying something else?”

Ask the right questions 

One of the big problems Lewis believes is that, “People ask the wrong questions. Too many ask: “How do I get the shiny new car/glamorous holiday/amazing Christmas/designer clothes I want on my paltry salary?”

He explains that, “It's thinking this way that leads people to overspend, because they ignore the financial reality. The real question is:  On my paltry salary, what’s the best lifestyle I can possibly have?”

You have to start letting your finances rule your lifestyle, not vice versa.

Corporate treasury department’s mission

Most corporate treasury departments have some sort of mission statement (or it is wrapped up in the finance departments mission), E.g. Provide financial risk management and stewardship over financial assets and liabilities to enable the corporation to achieve its objectives. And then some detail on how it be will achieved

• Ensure liquidity to fund operations and provide stewardship

• Manage a portfolio of financial risks 

• Provide professional stewardship of financial assets to manage risk and return within approved parameters

• Provide a low cost, high quality global transaction processing.

There are many versions of such missions. But where are the mantras that the corporate treasury department should live by?

Corporate treasury mantras

Using Martin Lewis as a guide, CTMfile suggest these mantras:

  • Keep It Simple Stupid - don’t overcomplicate; accept what sort of corporate treasury department you are
  • Don’t try and do everything - be superb at a few key things
  • Don’t buy complicated systems, I.e. Do you really need it? Will you use it?

CTMfile take: What would be your three mantras for the corporate treasury department be?

This item appears in the following sections:
Best Practices & Benchmarking in Operations
Control & Compliance in Operations

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By Paul Stheeman on 4th Apr 2018:

My three:
- Communicate with your stakeholders (you are not alone in your company);
- The less, the better (in many aspects, e.g. bank accounts, risk);
- There will always be something new around the corner (few functions evolve so fast as Treasury).

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