Army to Apprentice: how I brought a different way of thinking to leadership
Stephen tells us how he kick-started his Barclays career as a mature apprentice.
Posted about 1 month ago
Since then, time has flown and I am continuing to learn new things every day - from legislative changes that affect our industry to how to use tools like Microsoft Access and Sharepoint.
On my first day, my team gave me a warm welcome over a breakfast meeting. At the time, it seemed like they were speaking in a foreign language; they used terms I didn’t recognise, discussed software and referred to consumer bodies and regulatory organisations that I had never heard of. My manager gave me an excellent piece of advice, though: ‘Think of yourself as a sponge and absorb everything that is there to be learnt’.
After a few weeks in my role, and a series of meetings with my colleagues, I had got to grips with a lot of the terminology, though there is always something new to learn. This is one of the things I really enjoy about my role.
A key part of my work is focused on tracking regulatory developments and making sure that teams internally are up to date on them and how they apply to us. As part of this, I get the opportunity to attend seminars and events to stay abreast of regulatory changes and their impact on financial services firms.
A highlight for me was attending the British Bankers’ Association’s Annual International Banking Conference. I saw our Retail and Business Bank CEO Ashok Vaswani there, as well as senior figures from a range of other banks and industry bodies. Following the conference, I put together summaries of the speeches which were shared with our senior leaders and other internal stakeholders at Barclays. I get a real sense of accomplishment whenever my publications are commended and approved by my manager.
It is a great time to be in Compliance - no two days are the same for me. As financial regulatory reforms roll out, there is ever greater emphasis on the Compliance function to help the firm understand these changes.