Magazine article American Banker

If You Can't Teach Your Staff, You Can't Sell Your Customers

Magazine article American Banker

If You Can't Teach Your Staff, You Can't Sell Your Customers

Article excerpt

Most banks see huge potential in selling investment products. With investors pouring billions of dollars every year into mutual funds, it's no wonder that banks are trying to tap into the market.

How successfully they're doing it, however, is the question.

One of the key problems they face is their general inability to effectively identify and position investment opportunities to existing customers. Bank employees often lack general - or even basic - investment product knowledge, so they have no way of knowing how investments can benefit their customers.

I recently taught a class of personal bankers from a bank that had been offering investment services for more than seven years. One banker was particularly enthusiastic. A week earlier a customer with $750,000 in certificates of deposit asked him if it was possible to purchase mutual funds through the bank.

This loyal customer stated that he would definitely keep his funds in the bank if the banker could provide him with some mutual fund expertise. Incredibly, the banker told the client that the bank didn't sell mutual funds, closed the customer's accounts, and had a check made payable to Merrill Lynch.

Why did the banker do this? Simple. The bank offers mutual funds, but the banker wasn't comfortable discussing them. To save face in front of the customer, who assumed the banker was a financial expert, the banker took the easy way out.

The only antidote to the poison of embarrassment is knowledge. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.