New Barclays gaffer gets rid of black cars for feng shui
When Barclays hired the axeman who sends everyone scurrying to the job centre website, he wasted little time in banning jeans and flip-flops from the company. Now, John McFarlane is at it again, this time, axing Barclays' fleet of black executive cars.
That's not because he wants the top brass to catch the bus - he just doesn't like black cars. He's ordered a load of silver limousines in their place. Why? Because he's bang into feng shui. He sounds a bit crackers, doesn't he?
It would appear that McFarlane wants everyone's chi to be in good order and that silver or grey vehicles are a sure fire way of bringing harmony to all.
Now, it would appear that Barclays renew the lease on its executive cars every few years, so this isn't totally cuckoo, but the introduction of an entirely silver fleet of executive cars is something that the chairman wished for.
McFarlane has previous of course. A former, irritated executive at ANZ in Australia said: "He loved that sort of stuff. I guess I am a different person. It worked for him but it wasn't for me," said Steve Targett. "I didn't need to see the feng shui consultant come around and put little elephants in the corner of my office and tell me to give money to 10 beggars in 10 days and the like, otherwise I would have bad luck. I'm not that sort of person."
Isn't it comforting to know that people at the top of the finance world are so eccentric?