June 12, 2017 by Greg

“Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!”

Lewis CarrollAlice Through the Looking Glass

Technology and data have set an unprecedented pace of change – whole sectors find themselves running to keep up. Retail banking is one area where keeping in the same place is proving especially challenging. Factors such as legacy systems, regulations and developing consumer expectations make change at pace difficult – but it’s the culture of a bank that can be a barrier to overcoming those challenges effectively.

Just a matter of years ago, retail banks were seemingly ripe to be usurped by Fintechs with no baggage – lean, agile and innovative with fail-forward cultures. But the language has moved more to speak of partnerships in the interim as the incumbents see the need and potential for change.

For partnerships to be successful in the long term – and for banks to continue to be profitable – the culture that has driven the rise of Fintechs has to become the culture of a retail bank. Some banks realise this; we’re seeing ‘innovation frameworks’ and initiative after initiative at banks and building societies to change what a ‘banker’ thinks, feels and does.

Entrepreneurship, agility, bravery and collaboration are all traits of the future successful banker. These are not traits traditionally selected for at banks. Without them, the hard work to become digital, to remain relevant to customers, will be wasted. Technology gets you so far, people still drive how it’s used. That means it’s people who must be equipped with the right skills to ‘run twice as fast’ and go somewhere new.

At NKD, we have experience taking people somewhere else. We shift people’s thinking, change their behaviours to transform performance  – and we know how to do it quickly. If you would like to hear more about how we do it already with some of the world’s biggest brands such as Virgin Atlantic & DHL, we’d love to share. Say Hello at hello@nkd.co.uk