With a responsible attitude and honest approach, it's no wonder that customers value their trusting relationship with Jonath Yeung, premier relationship manager, HSBC, who is the proud winner of this year's Grand Award (Group A) at the Hong Kong Institute of Bankers Outstanding Financial Management Planner Awards.
"The award encourages professional development and confirms that we are on the right track," remarks Mr Yeung.
The competition gives financial planners the chance to demonstrate their professional skills to the judging panel comprising industry experts, and to work alongside their industry peers to share ideas.
"It has been an extremely valuable experience for me. I've had the chance to learn a lot from the judges," he says.
Susanna Cheung, head of retail banking, personal financial services Hong Kong, HSBC, notes that HSBC staff received support from the company in preparation for the competition.
"A dedicated team was responsible for coordinating the programme. We had internal programme promotion, training workshops and coaching to provide comprehensive support for the participants from start to end," she says. "In addition, experienced mentors from our training department offered one-on-one coaching to participants to fine-tune their plans and presentations. The participants' line managers also played a vital role, sharing ideas and providing constructive feedback."
Mrs Cheung also notes that last year's gold award winners helped by evaluating plans and sharing their experiences to boost participants' confidence.
Mr Yeung considers establishing trusting relationships with his customers one of the most rewarding elements of the job, and he also attributes his competition success to this. "I've been in touch with clients who have completely different financial goals. I like to build common ground with new clients and involve them in their financial planning process," he explains. "Such experiences have helped me to realise the importance of gaining trust from my clients."
A vital part of Mr Yeung's job involves explaining to his clients the details of financial products, an aspect he considers one of his main strengths. "New clients always find financial products complicated," he remarks. "To make sure they're comfortable with our financial planning ideas, I need to explain the details of their financial portfolios, helping them to fully understand what they want and what returns to expect. We also focus on the customers' individual needs at the many different stages in their lives, tailoring financial solutions based on income, expenditure and asset liability."
While the competition process challenged contestants, Mr Yeung found the experience valuable and rewarding. "During the presentation session of the competition, I obtained invaluable advice from banking and finance veterans. This will definitely help with my future career development," he stresses. "It was a wonderful learning experience and I will apply what I've learnt from the competition to my work."
Both Mrs Cheung and Mr Yeung feel the Hong Kong Institute of Bankers Outstanding Financial Management Planner Awards have a positive impact on the industry.
"The awards received extensive exposure through various channels and have effectively increased public awareness of the benefits of financial planning and how financial planning can help people achieve their goals," comments Mrs Cheung.
"With the rapid development of the profession in Hong Kong in recent years, the competition has become a terrific platform for highlighting the importance of wealth management," she continues. "This enhances the overall image of the profession, and it helps people recognise that we are all dedicated to providing quality financial services in order to take care of their lifelong needs."
For Mr Yeung, the competition was part of an enlightening career journey, and he recommends participation to professionals who are eager to learn. "It has been a really great platform for me to challenge myself as well as to learn from experienced professionals in the industry. I can't wait to take part in the competition again," he concludes.