The ties that bind: Cultivating lasting relationships
It is actually trust that moves a business forward and eventually sustains it.
BPI/Photo Release
The ties that bind: Cultivating lasting relationships
( - May 24, 2019 - 4:21pm

Impassable roads and scattered debris, Shella Usquisa still has vivid memories of how Super Typhoon Lawin affected her town in Tuguegarao back in October 2016. "The typhoon was relentless, but so was I," Shella shares, continuing to brave the storm that fateful day, opting to still go to fulfill her responsibilities at work.

Duty first

A customer relationship specialist, Shella's days are filled with nonstop engagements with bank clients. Sometimes pleasant, sometimes challenging, Shella has gotten used to dealing with every kind of client, adding that she has already mastered the art of keeping her composure at all times and that her greatest "tool" at work is her ability to listen and understand where her clients are coming from.

Thus, in spite of the strong gusts of wind and heavy rainfall which lasted for hours, Shella knows that her clients will be needing her help now more than ever. "I braved the storm and reported to work," she says. It was important for her that her clients will continue to receive the service they need. "I made sure I was available to handle customer concerns because it is during times like these that they need me most. I continued to serve our clients with utmost care and love," says Shella.

She admits that she's no stranger to handling such challenges. In fact, she had a rough start at the company, experiencing several failures, rejections, and disappointments. But Shella took all these in stride and turned it into something positive - a way for her to improve and ultimately be a better person. Appreciating the value of her job, Shella finds fulfillment in being able to help their clients in whatever banking concerns they have.

"One time, there was an irate client who approached me regarding his credit card. He unknowingly incurred transactions amounting to Php15,000—exclusive of surcharge and interest which totaled to P35,000. The client disputed these transactions and questioned our bank's integrity. He was requesting to close his account," remembers Shella. 

"I remained calm and listened sincerely to his sentiments. After several questions and taking note of the facts, I immediately escalated his complaint to the concerned officer/personnel and monitored the progress daily. I also assured our client that everything will be fine, and there's no need for him to close any of his accounts with us."

As a result of daily progress monitoring, the client's concern was solved immediately. Shella's client was satisfied with the quick resolution and kept his account with their bank. According to Shella, "He even deposited more funds with us to show his gratitude."

Experiences like this bring Shella so much joy, as it is a form of assurance that they are fulfilling their duties to their clients.

Never stop learning

Just like Shella, Jestoni Po also deals with clients a lot as a relationship manager at the same bank. Tasked to handle "preferred banking clients", expectations are very high for Jestoni to deliver. While there is a lot of pressure, Jestoni turns to education to be able to do his job well.

"Never stop learning. This is the greatest lesson I’ve learned in my 11 years with the bank. I realized that there’s so much more that I need to learn and there’s a perpetual need for me to grow and develop myself," says Jestoni. Just like Shella, being a good listener helps Jestoni in his job wherein he builds and maintains a portfolio for his clients. This includes banking solutions, business reviews, updates on local and global market trends, and advice on various investment options. As a marketing graduate, Jestoni had to really apply himself to the responsibilities of his job and basically become a student once again when he started in the bank. Through diligence and a sincere desire to serve, he was able to work his way up and now has a team whom he guides and mentors to be able to extend the kind of service that builds trust with their clients.

Cultivating relationships

Trust is very important in any kind of relationship as Shella and Jestoni very well know with their years of working in customer relations. It is actually trust that moves a business forward and eventually sustains it.

As valued employees of Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI), Shella and Jestoni are effective advocates of the bank's mission of making the lives of Filipinos better not just through effective banking products but most importantly through lasting relationships.

With a history that’s 168-years strong this year, BPI celebrates a longstanding tradition of cultivating a culture of lasting relationships with its clients. As the brand continues to keep up with the times through constant innovations, it never forgets to take care of its clients, just how they would like to be treated - with utmost care and importance.

Likewise, the company is also mindful that at the heart of their business are employees like Shella and Jestoni who share the same values and believe in their mission. Thus, it ensures that just like with their clients, their employees also enjoy the appreciation that they deserve.

All these go hand in hand when it comes to cultivating lasting relationships. An unbreakable circle of trust that will remain strong through the years.

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