First Flight has had a number of clients in the regulated Financial Services sector and we are delighted that Robert Watsham has joined the First Flight team to address the growing need for Non  Executive Directors within the Financial Services community. 

Robert has spent more than twenty five years of his professional services business experience in the Executive Search market and has focused on senior level and Board searches across the financial services sector, latterly with an emphasis on banks in the Middle East and across Africa.

He has also managed Executive Development assignments, identifying not only skills gaps within teams, but also development needs of individuals who are looking to broaden their careers.  Moreover, he has recently undertaken a Board assessment assignment as an adjunct to a Bank’s Nominations Committee.

After an early career in the banking world in London, Robert was attracted to a consultancy specialising in the recruitment of senior executives in the Middle East.  Thereafter, he was one of the founder Partners of a search business, helping to build its international footprint; as well as being the Global Practice Leader for their Financial Services business.

Financial Services Sector

In parallel to the changes witnessed at Board level, the world of Financial Services has been experiencing wholesale change over the past decade and more.  With the advent of digital disruption and the entry into the market of a large number of challenger institutions, fierce competition has taken place between those institutions which can be innovative providers of products underpinned by new technology, to those who set out to disintermediate the “old guard” altogether.

Today’s Boards need to embrace new technologies to cut costs, to improve revenue growth and operational efficiency, whilst addressing the holistic threat of risk from simple human error to organised global crime.  Above all, increased regulatory and investor scrutiny add to the pressures at the Boardroom table.

Today’s Non-Executive Director needs to display an agility of mind, coupled with a sound understanding of the many threats facing and opportunities open to their institutions.

First Flight is committed to helping its clients to understand these issues, whilst overlaying a drive for the diversity agenda which is also now seen as a key to future positioning.

We work closely and proactively to advise our clients on the structure of their Boards, whilst also nurturing the talents of those who are making the transition from their executive career to that of being a Non-Executive Director.

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