ANZ boss stresses the value of time for family

AFR story on John McFarlaneThe Australian Financial Review Magazine’s March edition (subscription required) has a profile piece on ‘Australia’s best banker’, the guitar playing, zen spiritualist, CEO of ANZ Bank, John McFarlane.

In it McFarlane articulates an approach to employee relations and workload, which sounds pretty good to us;

“Many people will invest their whole lives in this company [ANZ]. We have to create the kind of company that is worthy of that investment. In doing that, two things come to mind. First, it is wrong of us to say that we want that investment exclusively for us in the company and to ignore the other areas of life, including family and spirituality – the maturity of an individual in a spiritual, psychological, evolutionary sense. Second, people ask me about work/life balance. And I say it is the wrong question. Get a life, and fit work in there somewhere. Work should be a meaningful part of your life.”

AFR continues, noting that McFarlane “actively discourages meetings; he sees no benefit from micro management and extra layers of oversight. “People will say ‘I want to see you’ and I will say ‘What about?’ and they’ll say this and I’ll say ‘I’m happy for you to get on with it,’ he explains.”

In three months Finsec members at ANZ National Bank will be negotiating employment issues including workload, work life balance and competency assessments.


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