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Jo Geraghty

Director

From darkness cometh light

Date added: 02nd Mar 2015
Category: Organisational Culture Change

Is the financial services sector finally starting to see the turnaround in culture which will place its footsteps firmly back on the road towards trust?

Is the financial services sector finally starting to see the turnaround in culture which will place its footsteps firmly back on the road towards trust?  With a steady stream of mis-selling and poor practice examples still hitting the headlines, public perception would suggest that there is some way to go; a point echoed by Andrew Hauser, Director of Markets Strategy, Bank of England when he spoke recently to AFME’s 10th Annual European Market Liquidity conference.

Comparing the task of regaining trust in the finance sector to that faced by King Sisyphus, Andrew Hauser commented that “the industry seems locked in an endless cycle of blame and redemption.”  Breaking this cycle was one of the key aims of the Fair and Effective Markets Review and Andrew Hauser used his speech to give a flavour of the responses which had been received to the consultation phase of the review.

Interestingly, whilst there seems to be broad agreement as to the cause of the crisis of trust there is less cohesion when it comes to the solution.  Partly, Andrew Hauser puts this down to the fact that ‘culture’ is very firm specific and therefore the solution which is right for one business will not succeed in another.  However, key priorities are seen to include:

  • Improving Board level oversight of conduct risks
  • Engaging key management staff
  • Embedding conduct in a wide range of Human Resources processes
  • Improving firms’ ability to draw out the lessons of past failures for other parts of the business

The review’s final recommendations are due in June and in the meantime we will leave the final word to Mr Hauser.  When contrasting between the ‘light’ of new opportunities and the ‘dark’ of past misconducts he concluded his speech by saying that “In most Hollywood films, it is light that triumphs. I hope that, working together, we can do the same.”

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