The best ways to reach your sceptical learners in investment banking

Most of the blogs I write are inspired from my own experience, hence branded finance. Let me profile what we are dealing with: life-long bankers, focused on making money, where any time spent on not making money or doing something that will directly generate revenue is seen as a waste of time. Sceptical learners exist in every organisation. Mentioning topics like mindfulness will trigger sarcastic comments. You can catch them learning more about markets but not about how to advance their soft skills. In this blog I will discuss the best ways you can reach your sceptical learners in investment banking. Please note the below is not meant to portray investment bankers mockingly. They are dedicated, hard working and just a different class in their own.

You might understand that coming in a bank and wanting to make ground-breaking changes will not work. You instead need to learn about their personality, what drives them, and adapt the learning style. Let me exemplify a few traits of bankers and how those can be addressed in learning.

  • Bankers love a competition. No, they love to win. Are you struggling with getting them to complete their compliance learning in time? Why not make it game based, allowing them to earn points for their answer and then publish their scores to a leader board. Next thing you know your learners will start their learning as soon as it is sent to them.
  • No nonsense type. Bankers are not great at beating around the bush, especially when it comes to softer topics. Most of them will be great with numbers and facts. So putting them in front of conceptual ideas will not work well. Textbook type examples will also not get much interest. What you need are facts and examples from their world, something that they can resonate with. This will also make them understand the behaviour that is expected or needed of them without any ambiguity.
  • Regardless of the division, people in banking do not like to spend endless time going through a topic. I would thus keep training brief. Either digital or in person I am confident anyone in banking would not like to take 1 or 2 hours off from the desk. They are driven, they work hard and they want to be present when a client calls. In short, as I mentioned before, they are very much revenue driven. Why not break your eLearning modules into short sessions so they don’t have to book in a long period of time to complete it.

I do hope L&D teams take time to understand their learners before attempting to deliver content. Investment banking is a special kind of community and in order to reach your sceptical learners in the best way is to understand what triggers their interest, how you make them tick.

Have you had any experience with learners from investment banking? What do you find keeps them engaged?



Ilinca Budeanu

Business Dev Manager

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