Dear Mr Tan,
With the recent saga over the few structured products and mini-bonds, we would assumed that the banks' role will be focusing on providing assurance to their existing customers and customer retention.
Yesterday, I received a call from a personal banker from a local bank. He was telling me about a fixed deposit promotion and that I should meet him at the branch as the promotion will be ending soon. Fair enough, I went down to check it out but to my surprise, the banker starts to sell me their insurance plans!
Upon further subtle probing, I realised that the bank are still pressuring their staff to sell and to maintain certain target or they may be the next to go. Is this what the local banks should focus on at this point of time? Is it just another convenient excuse to axe their staff? Or is it trying to compete with rival banks for business?
I read in a recent article that most foreign banks have channelled their sales force to focus entirely on customer service and handling all the related enquries. I believed that this is the correct approach and the least that the banks can do now for their customers.
I cannot even imagine that there are still banks imposing targets on their staffs at this time. Are they encouraging them to mis-sell or misrepresent their products to secure their jobs? Does it matter to them what product they are selling to the customers or if the product is suitable? Will history repeats itself all over again when the customers complained about the products they buy at this time?
As more products are being affected, I believed that the whole episode is here to stay thus I sincerely hope that the local banks will know their priority, have more compassion and adopt the correct approach. It would definitely be better if the MAS can intervene and developed a policy to control the industry.
This is an extremely difficult time for Singaporeans, especially so for many uneducated and unsavvy customers who do not know the avenue to check about their current products.
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