Money Moves

Extending the "privilege" in Swiss Privilege

by Wendy Shair

Anthony Lee
executive director
Swiss Privilege
Photo: Edde Ngan

In order to maximise the growth opportunities in the wealth management industry, key players in the field are stepping up measures to snap up the best talent.

"The right personnel can help sustain business growth by addressing and fulfilling the financial needs of today's discerning clients," says Anthony Lee, executive director of Swiss Privilege.

Mr Lee notes that one of the company's initiatives is to first identify the service expectation of the affluent client segment. "We'll also need to beef up our financial consultant team in order to capture future growth," Mr Lee says.

When recruiting, Swiss Privilege focuses on quality, seeking seasoned professionals with sales experience in wealth management, but Mr Lee stresses that the company also welcomes high-calibre professionals from other fields such as property, private banking, IFA, insurance and other luxury sales.

"We look for business savvy professionals who possess the right sales knowledge and a customer oriented mindset," he notes.

Increased sophistication

Swiss Privilege embraces an "SPP" motto, giving greater emphasis on three key attributes, including "sophistication", "productivity" and "professionalism".

"We expect our relationship managers to have a sophisticated approach not only to financial products but also to the affluent lifestyle," Mr Lee remarks. He adds that a competent financial professional should be able to "speak the same language" with high-net-worth clients. "They may share with their clients a common interest in fine wines or golf. This level of sophistication in addition to product knowledge will definitely help to elevate a professional image."

Positioned to become a one-stop financial company, Swiss Privilege is pulling out all stops to enhance its business portfolio in a move to increase the productivity of its relationship manager team. According to Mr Lee, plans are underway to roll out a wider range of products and services, and in particular, group products such as MPF and insurance. In line with this, the company's relationship managers are required to attain the relevant qualifications.

The competition for talent essentially confirms the potential of the wealth management market in Hong Kong. "To capitalise on this, we should continue to recruit and develop the best talent," Mr Lee observes. "But the current market offers quality job candidates a great deal of choice so employers will need to inject certain fun factors in the job in addition to other incentives."

Now a member of global financial leader AXA Group, Swiss Privilege offers aspiring individuals a wealth of vertical and lateral career opportunities. In particular, the company has in place a structured induction programme to prepare its new recruits for future prospects towards a sales route or management responsibilities.

"Currently, our sales force consists of 150 sales professionals. We plan to further expand our team by hiring an additional 50 consultants this year," says Mr Lee. "Hiring and training are for long-term, mutual growth. We should always keep this in mind."

And now tomorrow

  • Financial market offers good conditions for growth
  • Global firm to increase staff by 25 per cent
  • Sophistication, productivity and professionalism are key attributes

Taken from Career Times 7 January 2011, A2

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