We interview people in financial services who balance being successful in their careers and looking after their wellbeing.
The purpose is to promote positive role models who challenge the stereotype of long hours, high stress, being aggressive and living a life of excess.
You'll hear examples of how people manage their time, sleep, exercise, relationships and management style.
The show is presented by performance coach Andy Hix.
#11 The 'Chi FO', Phil Culver Evans
I loved talking to Phil Culver Evans, CFO of Earth Capital, a sustainable fund management group.
We talk about his transformation from ‘fidgety Phil who can’t sit still' to being dubbed by his colleagues the ‘Chi FO’, because of his passion for Qi Gong, which has helped him to discover the art of relaxation.
I remember my friend saying that what her dad found most irritating about hippies is when they start to talk about 'energy', because it's so meaningless and airy fairy. Well, Phil is certainly not a hippy, but he does talk about using Qi Gong to feel the energy in his body has tremendous therapeutic effects.
We also talk about how he is looking after his team's wellbeing during lockdown and his key to a happy, balanced life.
#10 Smashing the stigma: mental health campaigner Rob Stephenson
Rob Stephenson used to run his own financial services recruitment company, Maven, but is now a full time mental health campaigner, CEO and entrepreneur.
His mission is to smash the stigma around mental health, which he's doing through several different fantastic projects.
I felt really inspired in this conversation by his vulnerability - everyday he posts his wellbeing score out ten and what's contributing to that. It's evolved into a tool called FormScore that improves mental health in our workplaces and communities by means of self reflection and support for one another.
He set up Inside Out, a list of business leaders who are willing to talk about mental health and he consults with organisations to help them create healthy workplace cultures.
He's also Chief Catalysts at BetterSpace, a platform that helps people find what is most likely to help their mental health with a live database of interventions that improve one’s state of mind, from exercise clubs to mindfulness apps to life coaches.
We talk about his experience of bipolar, depression, anxiety and attempting suicide, what he does to improve his own wellbeing and what leaders can do to champion mental health.
#9 How to be successful whilst staying true to your values: Sidd Bhatt
In this episode I speak to Sidd Bhatt, who used to work in sales for Citibank and now runs a vegan lunch van.
Before he got into finance he was working for a solar start up fuel sustainable development in India.
But while studying for his MBA, the people he met made him think he would enjoy the challenge of working in finance.
He did, and was so successful he managed to increase his total compensation by a factor of 10, during his seven years at CitiBank.
What I find particularly inspiring is that he did that whilst staying true to his values. One of his biggest deals was financing the largest wind farm in the world.
It was also great to hear that other than his drive and curiosity, looking after his wellbeing and being himself were key to his success.
We also discussed:
- Why he left a solar start up to enter finance with no training or experience
- The lifestyle that nearly broke him and how he turned it around.
- What did he do to dramatically improve his performance at work
- Why it wasn't worth his time to learn golf
- Why 'fake it till you make it' is b******t
- Why he left banking at the peak of his career to set up a vegan lunch company
- His advice for people who haven't found their purpose
#8 The challenge of being yourself in banking: Nick Edwards
Nick Edwards was a top-ranked analyst at the world's largest independent investment bank, Lazard, and subsequently worked at two London-based Hedge Funds.
Almost two years ago, he left the finance industry to co-found archForm, a business set up to enable more musicians to make a living from what they do. They are about to launch Feed, a platform that helps artists reach more people and grow a sustainable audience.
We talk about:
- What it took for him to become a top-ranked analyst, and why he left, despite his success
he difficulty in being yourself in certain work environments
- The sacrifices he's made to start his own business
- What advice he would give someone entering investment banking now
- Escaping the treadmill of life
- Finding happiness and meaning
#7 The Yogi Banker: Scott Robinson
Scott Robinson, otherwise known as The Yogi Banker is Head of Regulatory Policy at Deutshce Bank.
In this episode we discuss:
Is new financial regulation making another crisis more or less likely?
How Scott finds purpose in his work
Whether he thinks bankers are worth the money
How he's changed since practising yoga
How yoga helps in meetings
Whether he believes a banker needs to be aggressive
The qualities of people who make it the top
Why it's beneficial to be an ethical banker
The link between high performance and feeling good
Top tips if you're really stressed at work
Meditation: Effortless Meditation for Calm & Focus
A ten minute guided breathing meditation, to help you feel calm, focused and present.
A must listen for anyone in the financial services sector
I’ve been listening to the Mindful Banker podcast for a while now, and think this truly is a must-listen for anyone working in the financial services sector, or for anyone who has a partner, close friend, or family member in the industry.
Hosts Andy and Raj shine a light on the urgent need for a holistic approach to well-being and a mindfulness practice in this stressful professional atmosphere, dispelling the myths and stereotypes that surround the industry as they pertain to health, stress, and the Type A personality mindset.
I like that they offer helpful and accessible suggestions for listeners, with an empathetic and anecdotal approach.
Their selection of guests is also well-curated; I particularly enjoyed episode 2 with Arti K-A; it was an elegant and at times poignant look into mindfulness and feelings of vulnerability in one of the most mentally and emotionally taxing work sectors.
I’m looking forward to more episodes!