Clients first! FD Arno Daehnke reveals Standard Bank's five value drivers

Standard Bank operates with a model that lists five value drivers. And financial outcomes are not even number 1, 2 or 3.

Standard Bank FD Arno Daehnke says that rather than focusing on financial ratios, the balance sheet and headline earnings, the bank should be spurred on by several value drivers – five, to be specific. Arno detailed a plan which identifies that client experience, combined with employee engagement and risk and conduct, results in a financial outcome. Social, economic and environmental impact also made the top five.

Also read: Seismologist turned finance boss: a chat with Standard Bank FD, Arno Daehnke

Here are Arno’s five value drivers:

1. Client experience. “This should be the primary focus for every employee. It means putting the client at the centre of everything we do. There are many ways we can measure how clients feel about us, like the Net Promoter Score.”

2. Employee engagement. “This is about making Standard Bank a great place to work. Throughout the years this has been good and bad. In 2010 we had a painful retrenchment of 2000 people, which - in hindsight - did not achieve sustainable cost saving. We realise that. We need to focus on training, empowering people, rewards and an environment where people can speak up. We are also very conscious of millennials and their different take on things like leave policies.”

3. Risk and conduct. “This is about doing the right business the right way. Where do we invest? What are our ethics? Banking is all about trust, so this is a huge focus.”

4. Financial outcomes. “Revenue, profit and all the other numbers Standard Bank reports remain crucial drivers of the business.”

5. SEE: Social, Economic and Environmental impact. “We are more than just a place where people can open a bank account. We can drive savings for school fees, insure homes, register trusts and wills. We look after the wellbeing of people and this creates shared value.”