Banking specifically and the financial services industry in Nigeria has evolved a lot over the last 2 decades. Government regulations, growth of the middle class has moved the reach of the sector away from just the public sector and corporates to retail and small and medium enterprises.
A few days ago during a “water cooler” moment with a colleague, I found myself asking, when did banking become so driven?
My mother worked in a bank for 14 years and her experience was nothing like what banking in Nigeria is today.
High performance targets, a constant race against competition, deals and counter deals for increased wallet share, the list goes on.
What ever happened to partnership, community banking and relationships or am I just dreaming here?
Employees are strung out and looking for the next best thing, the next best thing being a change in grade and hopefully pay which may have little or nothing to do with value generation or even brand loyalty.
Some of my friends will probably read this and think I might have bumped my head but lately I have been asking myself, what the hell are we all chasing?
Corporate customers have become kingpins, dictating service terms that could run some banks out of business for what margins?
Maybe the cashless economy might bring new income streams and a level playing ground but for how long? What if a new CBN governor comes in and overturns that? What happens to the investment in time, resources, broken marriages, lost children, lives, destinies and dreams that have been sold to an insatiable industry chasing dreams of grandeur.
Maybe I do need to get my head checked but for some reason I just don’t understand why it has to be this way?
Whatever happened to true innovation? To real value? To bringing something to the table and standing by your word? To service?
It do know it is crazy expensive to run a business in Nigeria and the government doesn’t help but again why does it have to be this way? We are intelligent people why can we not change the rules of the game.