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Knock Knock, I am your relationship manager.

11 10 2016

I was at my bank the other day to update my KYC (Know your customer) documents and share my Aadhaar Card credentials. Little did I know, this outing of simple updating turned out to be quite an eye opener.

Here i was sitting in front of my R.M (relationship manager), Clad in his usual blue shirt and a smart looking tie. Taking his time out to scamper through the various piles of paper, waiting to put my updation in place. And soon the scenario changed. A customer, just like me, comes across the table. This guy was, however much different. He was a NRI (Non Resident Indian).

Everything around the table changed, from the accent to the professionalism and from serving clients with options from juice to green tea. Wondered don’t we all deserve similar treatments? Frankly speaking, how did it matter?

Our NRI friend in his heavy accentuated language goes on to seek professional advice on his amount lying idle in his account. He goes on to narrate his experience of his previous bankers and how badly his confidence was bruised with the way they apparently handled his money.

Before I could have finished my documentations, both of us were shifted to a nearby open cubicle. Nicely carpeted and with beautiful walls loaded with original vibrant acrylic paintings, I was soaking in the benefits of my NRI brother. From being served hot piping green tea, enters a smart looking lady. Apparently she is the one who personally looks after the NRI and big accounts. She ought to be good, I guess. Before I was asked anything, I guess Ms Congeniality knew her priorities and prods NRI to do the talking. He too shares his experience, although this time with more animation and detailed description on how unhappy he was with his earlier relationship managers and the way he was taken for a ride.

Ahoy, Ms Congeniality after hearing his story sympathetically, comes out with this brilliant idea of spreading her laptop presentation. He is advised capital protection ideas. One which protect the capital deployed and yes shares all the upside with the customer. Too good to believe, looking into my NRI friends eyes, I knew he was sold to this concept. For a change his bankers haven’t told him anything like gold coins or for that matter any fixed deposits. And here I was sitting there as a bystander waiting for my turn to update. Being a professional and a financial professional at one, Eardropping into the conversation was a strict no no. However hearing this one, didn’t go well with me. Knowing fully well, this guy is going to commit harakiri again by entering into some huge financial commitments and getting heavily invested into some rubbish insurance product.

Thought for a moment I should just whisper some gyan to my friend, isn’t that unethical to do at someone else’s premises? My mind thought of waiting outside the bank, to help me share and spare a thought, again that too would have been unethical. What do I do? My heart wanted to help him and yet my ethics and conscious didnt. What a dilemma to be in!

Having done my bit of work and feeling helpless I dragged my feet and with a heavy heart left the scene. I just hope and pray that some sense somehow prevails on my NRI friend. For he doesn’t know what he is getting into. For if his confidence gets dented again and he will lose his trust on the financial system. While relationship managers will keep changing with time, his relationship with money and the financial system has to remain intact.

Probably it’s time he gets a permanent relationship manager, a “financial planner!”

It’s time banks similar to mine shrug off this mentality to brain wash gullible clients and mask schemes which suit the banks coffers rather than the client. Knowing ones bank account balance doesn’t give anyone the right to misguide it’s customers. Doling out insurance schemes to people seeking financial help or promoting schemes to sell locker spaces, it’s a strict NO. For we need to have people who swear by professionalism and strengthen our financial system.

While i am sharing one such instance and realise there could be many more such instances, do share your experiences. Share it in your comments box. Do not fall prey to smooth talks and smart looks. It’s our money and one ought to do little bit of background check. Ideal would be to approach a financial planner, they are accountable for whatever they recommend.

Be Safe than Sorry.

Hattangady Rajesh, has been serving the financial industry since 2003 and also expresses his thoughts via pen and charcoal sketches. His firm THiiNK, conduct Investor Awareness Programmes at their office and your workplace too. In case you do need adfitional information, reach out on the below mentioned numbers or simply connect via email.

He can be reached on 9821434512/ 9821234512

(O) 022-25453363

THiiNK Financial Planners
(ISO 9001:2008 company)

SB 154, 2ND floor, Highland Corporate Centre. Above HDFC bank & Big Bazaar, Kapurbavdi Junction, Thane West 400607.

Alternatively you can connect with him on:

E MAIL : rajesh@thiink.in

WEB : http://www.thiink.in

LINKEDIN:

http://in.linkedin.com/in/thiink

TWITTER: https://twitter.com/THiiNKin

FACEBOOK:

http://www.facebook.com/thiinkin

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