February 4, 2023 / VOLUME NO. 247

Hybrid Workers Can Be Engaged Workers 

While some banks have dug in their heels and mandated in-office work, others are leveraging flexibility to create a competitive edge. 

For ConnectOne Bancorp in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, a hybrid work model has proven to be a valuable tool for recruitment and employee morale, ConnectOne Bank President Liz Magennis told me at Bank Director’s Acquire or Be Acquired conference in Phoenix earlier this week. Since it implemented hybrid work, the $9.6 billion bank has recruited talent from outside its home market, as well as different industries. 

“A lot of bigger companies are requiring their people to come back full time … and people aren't too happy about that,” she says. “That actually works to our benefit. Because if we're looking to recruit, it's an added plus, to be able to do that.” 

ConnectOne’s employees are required to work three days per week in the office; Magennis leaves it up to each department and team to work out exactly what those in-office days will be. She encourages workers to make the most of their time in the office by scheduling face-to-face meetings with teammates. The last thing she wants, she says, is for employees to come into the office only to spend their day in video meetings. 

Company culture hasn’t suffered under the hybrid model, Magennis adds. Corporate events like lunch-and-learns, dinners and innovation tours help bring staff together. 

“A lot of people are realizing that they don't want to spend an hour and a half commuting,” she says. “They can be doing a lot of things [with that time]: working or spending time with their family, or doing a load of laundry, whatever it is. We want our employees to feel like they're valued and at the same time engaged, and know that we have the resources available to them to be successful.” 

• Laura Alix, director of research for Bank Director

A Conversation With PNC’s William Demchak 

The PNC Financial Services Group Chairman and CEO William Demchak explains why the bank bought BBVA USA during the height of the of the pandemic, and why the decision was so tough.  

“The bank with the most capital wins every time.”

— William Demchak

• Kiah Lau Haslett, managing editor of Bank Director

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