My 2020 Vision – written in 2013

My 2020 Vision – written in 2013

A note I wrote in 2013 for my 2020 vision

It’s almost one year since I left my job as an investment banker and this week I was just reminiscing a little. Actually, it wasn’t the first time I left banking, the first time was in October 2013 when I thought I knew what I wanted to do, but I got sucked back in for another 3 years! Haha 🙂 When I left the first time, I was at a bank which had served me super well over the years, a place where I had an awesome time, learnt a bucket load and most importantly made amazing lifelong friends. Just before I left, the person heading up Operations at the time, asked staff to write in and express their 2020 vision for the bank. I only wrote mine after I had left and never actually heard back, partly because I think the Operations Head didn’t last there for too long.

Anyway – I have been thinking and researching about the future of work a lot recently. People who think that their jobs will be safe and also Businesses which assume they will still exist in 5 – 20 years time, definitely need to have both eyes open for what the future is bringing. It is already disrupting and will be disrupting how they operate on a much larger scale in the future.

Now, more than ever, it is time for large corporations to become creative and allow their staff to be creative too. Once the Robots come, our creativity and right hemisphere brain thinking will become much more prevalent and required than ever. Every company is going to become a technology firm in the future, so they need to behave like the Google, Apple, FaceBook, Amazon etc and give their staff the time and space to be creative and explore ideas.

Here is the note I wrote (I’ve removed the name of the person and also the name of the Bank, although you don’t need to be a brain surgeon to work out where I worked!)


Hi {Person’s Name},

This email is more than likely very late however I thought I’d write it as it has been on my mind for a very long time.

I was an {Bank Name} Employee for 10.5 years and left roughly 2 months ago. I enjoyed the heyday and rise to supposed supremacy and then having to deal with the downfall and recovery. I must say that I loved my time at {Bank Name} and will always look back at it with true affection for loads of reasons.

You have definitely been tasked with a challenging an arduous, yet potentially exciting task and role at {Bank Name}. My last couple of years at {Bank Name} were definitely a lot less enjoyable than the years prior to that, which is fair to say is the same feeling for a majority of the other employees too. I felt we lacked direction, staff engagement, leadership, communication and transparency which resulted in staff becoming demotivated, uninspired and less enthused at working for {Bank Name}. Which to me was…..and is sad.

Quickly…why I left was because I felt that the negativity circling the bank, the politics, the increased regulation and lack of job security was all coming to a loggerhead and that I needed to and wanted to be away from it. I also wanted to explore a few exciting opportunities outside of banking which required my time. On my last day, when saying goodbye to all the people I had met and worked with over the years, there was a resounding feeling and feedback of “Good for you, getting out of this place. I wish I could do the same etc etc” – that is “NOT COOL” I thought.

{Person’s Name} when you announced your Game Changer, Paradigm Shift and 2020 vision it got me excited because I really thought that it was a super idea to get staff motivated and re-engaged for the task which lay ahead. I listened intently on the research you had done on Amazon and other large Tech firms and how you saw us being able to implement those services, improvements and capabilities into our bank. The thing which saddened me was, how as an Investment Bank and as a leading Industry we had to start looking outside on how to improve. Which got me thinking….

Before I left I wanted to send this to you, but now having left the industry and started learning and studying other industries (mostly Tech), I feel that I am better positioned and would like to share my 2020 Vision:

Being owned by the Government gives you very little room to incentivise your staff with any decent financial benefits. You also have a workforce who are downbeat, who feel they have been knocked down and continually crucified either in the press or by people in other industries lambasting {Bank Name} Bankers (when they truly have no idea about them and how awesome they are), you have staff who want to leave but cannot because of the great pay, the standard of living they are now used to and commitments to provide for their dependants.

Deep down, what you do have is an outstanding workforce of smart, dedicated and hard working employees. People that have fantastic business ideas and minds (not necessarily banking related)

At a high level my idea is to have an {Bank Name} Start-Up Department…each employee is given 6 hours a week (10-4pm) on any one given day to work in teams on ideas they have out of work. They can be Tech or non-Tech related. It will drive creativity, ingenuity, team work, networking across department, socialising, form friendships, create a great atmosphere and a belief in working on something meaningful. The intention is to ultimately arm staff with new tools and ideas which will get them thinking how they can use their new skills to improve {Bank Name} as a place to work, improve {Bank Name} systems, improve {Bank Name} processes, improve {Bank Name} morale and make {Bank Name} the place everyone wants to work, because they offer something different. Staff are your number one asset and having them happy, motivated and confident is going to be your biggest paradigm shift.

The Start-Up scene is booming in London and a load of good people will move and could be lost to that industry because it is providing innovation, change and a can-do and want-to-do attitude. The Start-Up scene needs the city because we still have the financial backing and prowess, check out….. – question is how do we co-exist?

Having such a large workforce you have the perfect playing field to set something like this up, which will also separate you from other banks in the industry, get people conversing and create the REAL Game Changer you are envisioning.

If you’d like to discuss this more in person, then I am more than happy to share my ideas (I have plenty on this!!) and help. If not and it seems a bit too far fetched then I appreciate you listening to me and wish you all the best.



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