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SEB is about making a real difference

Torun Gadderud, an Executive Client Relationship Manager in Luxembourg, shares her reflections on a career of more than 20 years in banking and what the future might hold.

In a diverse financial market like Luxembourg, what makes SEB stand out?

“It’s the people. A positive attitude is key to an enjoyable workplace. We are allowed to give our opinions, we are asked for them, and we are made to feel important. When people feel seen, they want to do their best, and this creates a healthy company culture.”

“Even when you have different opinions, everyone deserves respect. I believe this respect will go a long way in developing trust and teamwork. The most difficult task is to have effective communication and practice active listening. An environment where everyone feels they have a voice is important.”

“Working in coverage, where your clients are professional family offices and private wealthy individuals, less women are traditionally employed over men. When I came to SEB I was pushed forward and encouraged as much as any man. SEB has shown me a lot of trust and given me important clients. SEB needs to continue to develop this diversity further.”

How do relationships play a role at SEB?

“It’s the heart of the whole business that we’re operating. It’s easy to say that the client is the most important, but to really demonstrate that is hard. You need to think long-term in terms of the client and the colleagues. What SEB is doing, even during tough times like the 2020 pandemic is standing by the clients. This long-term mindset is important to me. It allows us to see the consequences of our actions, both good and bad.”

How does SEB positively impact society?

“SEB looks at it as a transformation. It’s not only about fulfilling regulatory requirements, it's about making a real difference. The banking sector is crucial to the modern economy and our role is to take in funds, pool them and lend them to those who need funds. A bank has the influence to guide customer behaviour towards sustainability. SEB has an important role in this transformation.”

“It’s why I want to work in finance; knowing you can be in finance and have an impact on driving discussion on this important topic with our clients is essential. To make sure capital is flowing in the right direction. It’s not just about making people rich, but also about being a vital part in building a sustainable world.”

What do you think is on the horizon that will be impactful in the world of finance and sustainability?

“It’s hard not to say technology. It is a revolution that has already changed our daily habits and we can also use it to improve lives. An example is that technology can promote education and women in the third world can be empowered once they have education and access to funds. Lack of financial opportunity for women is a global problem as they have a potential to influence a better future. Impact investing is something the bank is putting focus on at the moment, which means a lot to me.”