Persona - Private Banker in Hong Kong
We have created a persona for a private banker in Hong Kong based on information about Kathryn Shih. She is called the grand dame of wealth management in Asia. Shih has been the President of UBS Asia Pacific for the past two years. She is married with two children and started out one day by telling her boss "give me some people. I'll give them some clients because I can't handle all of them myself", and that is how UBS grew to be a 380 billion Swiss franc bank on the way to 500 billion. Please see the attached document for the developed persona based on the information above.
Kathyrn Shih is President of UBS Asia Pacific. Prior to becoming President, she was the Group Managing Director and was labeled the best leader in private banking. She took on the President role more than 2 years ago. Shih has been in the banking industry for nearly 30 years since 1987.
Shih grew up in the Philippines with her family and they left when she was a teenager headed for Singapore. She graduated from high school in Singapore and went on to the United States to get a B. A. degree from Indiana University Bloomington and then back to the Philippines for her Master’s Degree. She moved to Hong Kong in 1983 and eventually got married and had two children.
Shih is a private person. She attends work-related social engagements, but otherwise just has a close-knit group of friends and family that she enjoys time with. Shih is an avid golfer and enjoys hitting the links in Fanling on the weekends and enjoys trips to play in Vancouver in the summer. Tennis is also a passion for her and she dials up friends for last minute late night games.
Shih started out with Citibank before moving to UBS. She states that the market is very competitive as every bank is trying to invest in wealth management. At UBS, Shih has had multiple roles. She started out in 1987 in wealth management and then moved to Head of wealth management for the Asia Pacific. After that, she was promoted to Group Managing Director, which was just prior to being appointed President. She is one of only two women in top leadership at UBS.
Shih is a member of the UBS Executive Board and in the past was a member of the executive committee for The Private Wealth Management Association.
Shih states that sexism is often there because one puts it there. She hasn't realized it, so it's not there. She said that typical women are not expected to be assertive or aggressive and you have to learn to find a balance between respectful and aggressive.
As the leading wealth manager in the region, UBS currently employs 9,000 people. One of the main goals Shih has with UBS is to take the bank from 380 billion Swiss francs to 500 billion. In the past year, the bank increased by 100 billion, so Shih believes this is a realistic goal within the next 18 months.
As the bank neared failure, UBS realized it needed a new strategy. Shih stated, "I learned that you can fail and that you have to be more aware of the risks". This speaks toward a mid-line of conservative and liberal. With that said, UBS decided that not having the right team and not being fast enough will not help you succeed in the business. Shih's quote of "Even as number two, you are the first loser" has pushed them to work toward finding the right team and growing faster to reach their goals. Shih claims that you only need to convince 10% of the staff and the rest will follow. She is very analytical when looking at the numbers.
When Shih took over as President, the bank was on the cusp of failing and she has worked hard to help bring it back. Some tasks she is focused on are as follows:
1. Create a perfect team
2. Building new clients and growing fast
Some frustrations of private bankers in Hong Kong are as follows:
1. Regulatory environment keeps getting tougher
2. Growing competition in the market
3. Continue doubling the bank's assets at rates of at least 10% per year.
In summary, we have provided detailed information about Kathryn Shih to develop the persona of a private banker in Hong Kong. She is considered the grand dame of wealth management. She is married with two children. As an active, but private person, Shih attends social engagements that are work-related but otherwise enjoys time with family and close friends. An important quote to her is "even as the number two, you are the first loser". Some of her goals and tasks are to find a dominant team for UBS and grow the business faster than the competition grows. Shih's has expressed frustration with the regulatory environment and growing competition in the wealth management market. Information on the brands for Kathryn Shih or this persona was publicly unavailable. Please see the attached document for the developed persona based on the information above.