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Asia CommentTaipan

The younger generation’s way of doing business

I miss the good ol' days when I worked hard to win business. The younger generation have new tricks up their sleeves

I remember when I first started my banking career. More often than not, I was up until the wee hours of the morning — sometimes working on big deals, at other times wooing clients at some of Hong Kong's trendiest bars, before eventually winding up at a small watering hole in Wan Chai.

However, bankers of this generation appear to be treating their jobs in a totally different way.

I met a young banker at Captain's Bar the other day. He was celebrating landing his first job as a private banker. He will be tasked with maintaining — and originating — new relationships with some of the city's wealthiest clients.

The chap was cool as a cucumber, having just officially signed his contract that evening. This was despite him telling me in some detail how his contract had clear-cut key performance indicators (KPIs) he would have to meet every year just to keep his job.

That must be tough, I thought, in this uber-competitive environment. So I tried to comfort the guy — by planning to share some of my stories, explaining my experience, and offer him some tricks of the trade.

But the guy didn't seem worried one bit. Why not, I wondered? He then revealed his own planned trick: his dad owns a handful of businesses in Hong Kong. The chap was simply going to ask his dad to introduce prospective clients to him.

This meant instead of regaling him with my tales from the past, the young man ended up talking to me about all the businessmen he was hoping to land within the first year. New tricks, indeed!

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