Shayan Omar

Shayan Omar

University of Western Australia
Aspiring Leaders Graduate
Shayan studied Bachelor of Economics/Bachelor of Commerce at University of Western Australia

What's your job about?

I’m a graduate on the Aspiring Leader’s program, which is a two year program which takes us across four departments of Bankwest. We spend six months in each rotation to pick up skills, learn new things and to understand how our organisation operates.

At the moment I’m in my second rotation which has brought me to the Products & Marketing division of the bank. My main role within the team is as a project manager on a large and complex initiative we’re trying to implement. I also look at mortgage pricing (i.e. what our interest rates ought to be given the market conditions) and I help build products (i.e. design home loans) and answer questions around mortgages that appear in our mailbox.

What's your background?

I was born in Bangladesh and spent my childhood in Singapore, Australia and the UK. I finished high school in Perth and went on to study at UWA. While at university I took internships in Australia, Bangladesh and China with accounting and finance firms. I’ve always had an interest in economics, banking and finance and I knew from a young age I wanted to work in a financial institution. I saw a great opportunity in the Aspiring Leaders Program here at Bankwest and decided to go for it. Since getting on the program I’ve not looked back.

Could someone with a different background do your job?

Yes. The most important characteristic a graduate can bring to the job is a positive, can-do attitude – everything else is learned on the job. Your attitude will determine your success in the program. Having a banking or finance background is simply a bonus as it helps the graduate understand more clearly the various facets of Bankwest but it’s not necessary to do the job.

What's the coolest thing about your job?

The coolest thing about the job is the workplace culture at Bankwest and the people I work with. I think you will have a great time in the program if your values resonate with Bankwest’s values. Additionally, there are many amazing people that you will meet on your journey within the program.

I enjoy completing tasks that let me think outside of the box. When I see my input and hard work has made a positive difference to customers (both internal and external), it shows me that I am doing the right thing. And that’s something that goes right through Bankwest – it’s all about what makes life easier for the customer.

What are the limitations of your job?

I honestly had to think a long time for this question and the only limitation which came to mind was around stakeholder management. A major limitation is that in many cases, we may be highly dependent on another team for a project to progress. If the other team does not complete their deliverables in a timely manner, it can really halt the progress on your overall project which may in turn cause high levels of stress.

Having said all that, it’s rare for a team at Bankwest to not be pulling their weight and keeping up with the pace. More often than not if there is a hold up it’s because something unexpected has happened and we have to stop and reconsider what we’re doing.

3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...

  • Travel, travel, travel. Whether it’s an exchange program at another university or simply travel during the holidays, make the most of the chances we have now to see the world. It broadens your perspective on everything.
  • Make lots of friends and get to know people. Good friends from university will be friends for life.
  • Don’t procrastinate.