Interview with Mr Farooq Hasan.

An Exclusive Interview with Mr. Farooq Hassan
Head of Personal Loans, Standard Chartered Bank

Mr. Farooq Hassan’s dynamism and an innate astuteness make him the success story of today. A unique self-starter who believes in himself, he acquired a B.Com from Halley’s College of Commerce, Lahore and then proceeded to complete a grueling Bi-Major MBA in Banking and Marketing from IBA, Karachi. Fresh out of school, he became a Management Internee in 1994, which incidentally was also his first job. Sheer hard work, good planning and a consistently clear vision have made him Head of Personal Loans, Standard Charted Bank, a remarkable feat one must admit. Being very welcoming to new comers, he gave precious advise on how to climb the corporate ladder. According to him, be consistent and avail opportunities with an affirmed belief in your capabilities. This comes in handy especially during decision-making. Success is dependent on how pleasant your personality is along with your ability to discuss issues and involve people rather than merely giving them regimental orders. Most of all, never forget dedication, which with a tinge of good luck go a long way.

Mr. Farooq Hassan’s entire demeanour speaks of his philosophy having a calm, collected air about him, which exudes an aura of complete authority. As Peter Drucker mentioned, “One does not manage institutions but one must manage people.” Today’s fast pace global arena has changed the face of management itself. A leader is “how good one can manage his people” and management has become specialized as well with HR (Human Resource) playing a vital role. HR processes may engage lengthy procedures involving advertisements, which in turn lead to the hiring of individuals who then have to be trained inorder to fit into their required posts. BrightSpyre on the other hand is the best time effective Management System around, as it makes available to an employer, prospective candidates with best possible skills in the shortest span of time.

Let us begin with the riveting interview: On Brightspyre and Human Resource Management:Conversation started with the recent trends of HR in Banking:

What are the recent trends in terms of competencies required by banks?

Farooq Hassan:
In regards with the area of Personal Loans one has to sell so skills such as verbal competence, public presentation and knowledge about the market are very important. This area requires active interaction with clients so your attitude plays a very important role. You must have a pleasant, flexible conduct as this will retain potential clients and make a better work environment for your colleagues. The field is open to both Graduates and Undergraduates.

Q: Having possessed all the above qualifications what is the next step
Farooq Hassan: After hiring, we provide training programs to fully equip our sales force according to the specifics of their job. That being done, strategies are formulated and then implemented.
Q: While sourcing employees the profile may require either a pioneering, result-oriented spirit or influence and motivation perhaps even persistence and a steadfastness to follow policy and procedures. Which one is the most suitable that Standard Chartered follows?
Farooq Hassan:
Obviously for any successful organization all of these are implemented. One must be an initiator because a pioneering spirit is inspirational. At the same time motivation along with a solid influence at being persistent and steadfast is important to results. Infact, in order to get all the work done under the set policies and procedures, a high level of persistency and steadfastness from the first initiating step till the end result both are strong requirements.
Q: How do successful companies manage their people?

Farooq Hassan: Keeping Standard Chartered in mind, which is one of the most successful institutions in the international banking sector, we must remember that good people are an asset for any organization. We use the best management techniques available to train, develop and groom our people to cope with challenges in the changing environment, at times attaching them with seniors to get on the job training and then let them go for solo flights.
Q: It is often seen that what motivates one person does not motivate another and sometimes even the best motive can be counter productive if applied indiscriminately. How do you tackle this problem?

Farooq Hassan: Nothing can be perfect until it is improved upon by realizing the dynamics of the situation and nurturing the individual’s understanding of it. That is why the best possible management skills must be used to educate and understand people otherwise there is a chance of counter productivity.
Q: What measures do you provide to increase the profitable productivity of your people?
Farooq Hassan: We promote teamwork and stress-coping strategies. The Bank also offers remunerative packages and different types of events are organized where the Employee and the Management can interact and exchange views with one another to solve problems. The purpose of all these activities is to increase individual learning, build self-esteem and confidence both in the employee as well as between the employer and the employee.
Q:Specifically speaking about Sales Professionals, what are their skill requirements

Farooq Hassan: As Sales is the most important and most interactive area in business, one must possess excellent presentation skills along with an ability to communicate well. Self-discipline and a personal initiative go hand in hand in staying ahead of the competition both within the company as well as outside. An important factor that any Sales Manager should keep as high priority on his list when dealing with his team is to infuse verbal rewards in his repertoire as this boosts morale and leads to better output. Verbal rewards along with incremental benefits must be given to get better results.
Q: How often are applicants needed and what methods have been adopted to acquire them?

Farooq Hassan: We advertise through newspapers but that is a hassle so we tried switching to an online hiring solution, The company is unique and exclusive in that it found us candidates best suited to our requirements and that too in very little time.
Any organization can benefit from cost effectiveness and time saving along with a focused and targeted audience. This is an impressive idea, being used all over the world and is highly recommended.

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