6 Key Insights from Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp Limited’s CEO

Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp Limited (SGX: O39) is one of the three major banks in Singapore. It is also one of the largest banks in Southeast Asia by assets and counts itself as one of the oldest banks in the Garden City.

Given its heritage and heft, there may be interesting things to learn from the bank. Earlier this year, Samuel Tsien, OCBC’s chief executive, was featured in an interview in The Asian Banker. I had picked out six key insights from the interview that may be useful for investors.

1. The CEO sets the stageclick here

2. It is all in the familyclick here

3. China, China, Chinaclick here  

4. But before talking about acquisition price…click here

5. Changing with the times

Tsien is mindful that traditional banking may change over time. He said:

“There will always be renewal because the market is evolving. We always have to make sure that we are able to reinvent ourselves along the way”

He also stressed the importance of the management team engaging all levels of employees to communicate its reasoning, and not just hand it down:

“We do not say, “After all of the wisdom that we have thought through, this is the way that we should do it.” We have to engage the people and say, “This is why we want to do it, this is what we are seeing.”

6. Succession planning

Tsien also said that OCBC has been grooming internal successors. He commented:

“As soon as we find a person whom we—the management team, the Board, myself—feel comfortable with, whom we can work with, then I think it’s time for me to exit the scene and for the new person to come in.”

Tsien mentioned that it is important that OCBC’s leadership team is always refreshed, even if it means that he would have to step aside.

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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. Motley Fool Singapore contributor Chin Hui Leong doesn’t own shares in any companies mentioned.