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Identifying the factors necessary for one to succeed as a private banker.

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With more than 27% of South Africa’s banking customers being privately banked; competition amongst private banks for quality clientele has increased. The question that arise as to: What sets apart that right candidate from the rest? “What are these private banks competing for?” This is true across the globe. The aim of this study was to determine what the characteristics are that make a successful Private Banker. Personal interviews of a sample of 30 individuals within a private banking institution were conducted in order to get closer to the answers as per research question. A probability sample of 30 bankers was drawn from a private banking institution in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, with a population size of 34 private bankers. The sample was composed of 30% males and 70% females. Of the sample, 93% were private bankers and 7% were Human Resources and Regional Management. The majority of the sample (66%) had been with the private bank for more than 12 months. The institution was chosen because of the easy access to information and the respondents for this research study. Data was collected using a questionnaire developed for this research. The analysis revealed that a banker aiming to succeed in private banking will have a Bachelor of Commerce degree or similar qualification with Finance or Banking as a major. This is important because private banking is a financial profession in a banking environment. The study has also shown that experience is not a factor in one’s ability or inability to secure referrals. A banker that is committed to giving exceptional service over a period of time and instils trust and confidence in a client will be entrusted with access to a client’s circle of association. The research and its recommendations add much needed clarity concerning recruitment of prospective private bankers to ensure they are successful in their roles. The recommendations are practical and can be easily applied by the various stakeholders within the private banking institution and by others wishing to join the sector.


MBA University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban 2012.


Private banks--KwaZulu-Natal., Banks and banking--Customer services., Private equity--KwaZulu-Natal., Theses--Business administration.