At this point, it’s become an industry – consultants who have grown up over the last decade helping banks and credit unions negotiate new agreements or renewals with their payments vendors – networks, processors, internet banking and bill pay companies, and card fulfillment businesses, to name a few.

Although I’d like to say that the clear majority of these consultants – both companies and individuals – take on these assignments with the intent of doing the best possible job for their clients, I’m not sure I can go that far. I’ve heard enough stories from companies in the payments space as well as individuals I admire and respect to know that some of these consultants can be more self-serving than not. They might operate under the guise of having their client’s best interests at heart, and their intentions might be good. The problem is that what they do and how they do it can cause more harm than good.

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