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RBA puts strategic thinking at the heart of senior level programme for SNS BANK N.V

RBA Focus logoAt the conclusion of a specially crafted classroom programme, designed to help bankers consider the dilemmas facing retail banks in today’s post-financial crisis world, a selected group of participants from SNS BANK N.V will meet with their Board of Directors, to present the translation of classroom insights into workable solutions for the Board’s consideration.

Each tailored RBA programme meets the bespoke requirements of the individual bank; is aligned to vision and objectives; and is delivered either in person in a classroom environment, or via distance learning. The programme can also complement existing training initiatives and the bank is encouraged to identify and select its best and most appropriate candidates, based on the level and mix of skills required.

The focus of the SNS BANK N.V programme was on achieving retail banking excellence, while linking the existing Retail Banking III modules to  the  bank’s  strategic  business plan. Participants took part in two week- long sessions, where training and robust discussion was facilitated by RBA’s Academic Director, Dr Abdul Rahman. The candidates were fully equipped with  the  appropriate skills and tools to support the creation of easily implemented plans and solutions, to address the current market volatility prevalent across  the  banking  sector worldwide.

Carolien Hamelink, Company Head of Communication at SNS BANK N.VOne of the highlights for Carolien Hamelink, SNS BANK N.V’s Company Head of Communication and Policies, was the experience of working closely with the senior management group at her bank and the encouragement this provided for her to think beyond her own sphere of control and influence.

Quote from Carolien Hamelink in a green call out box“The course helped me to see through our organisation as a whole.  We  were pushed to look beyond our own professional disciplines,” Hamelink described. “And that is absolutely valuable because then, you can better understand each other’s business and understand what you can do to help others’ disciplines, to improve products and processes that serve the customer better.”

Hugo Peters, Head of SNS BANK N.V’s Human Resources Division, echoed the thoughts of his colleague when it came to working closely with his peers to gain an extensive understanding of his own bank.

“Working with a diverse group of disciplines from all over the bank makes the programme even more interesting. We shared a lot of insights and learned a lot from each other,” Peters said.

“For an HR professional who doesn’t know a lot about retail banking, the course is very intense and has a steep learning curve,” Peters explained. “But … I had the opportunity to give some of my experience and knowledge to the other participants, which also led to very interesting discussions.”

Peters elaborated that those discussions gave him a much greater awareness and insight into the bigger picture of the Bank’s business. He also felt that his deeper understanding would contribute significantly when communicating with the Bank’s Board.

Hugo Peters, Head of HR at SNS BANK N.V“In my view, many of the presented subjects opened several eyes of the participants. For example, how to look at multiple brands, leadership and cost instead of revenue, and much more,” he explained.

“We have planned an evening session with the Bank’s Board to take place in June. In that session we will translate some of our learnings to proposals to improve certain parts of the Bank, by having a good discussion with the Board, making implementable proposals and presenting an implementation plan,” he said.

One of the recommendations that Hamelink hopes to present to the Board will be to develop a process that bridges the gap between key areas among the Bank’s various departments. She considers that this will place the business in a much stronger and more co-ordinated position to take aligned strategic decisions, to the benefit of all divisions.

Quote from Hugo Peters SNS BANK N.V in a green call out box“The course helped me to understand that decisions taken in one part of the business may impact upon other areas. It also taught us ways in which we can better work together and start the discussion with each other and with the Board. This will support the creation of processes that will bridge disciplines and penetrates divisional silos, to help ensure sound,  integrated  decision-making,” she said.

The client-specific nature of this RBA executive-level programme has empowered senior managers at SNS BANK N.V to get to know each other and develop a much broader understanding of their bank’s business, all the while providing participants with an internationally accredited qualification.

While access to the SNS BANK N.V Board is nothing new for these senior managers, this programme has equipped them with the tools to deliver new ideas and strategies, which will undoubtedly benefit the Bank, while strengthening retail banking as a strategic ‘force to be reckoned with’.

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