The last group activity of AFT 2019, the Meeting of Minds Workshop, took place on 3rd October. Led by Jean-Michel Félix, CEO of MCB Consulting Services Ltd, this workshop leveraged the insight and brainpower of over 35 C-level and senior banking leaders across the African region and beyond, through an aptly-called Meeting of Minds session. The aim was to identify and prioritise the main challenges faced by their banks in five distinct but interlinked areas that were purposefully scoped to look beyond numbers:
Delegates formed teams that were assigned one of the themes below, with the participation of a Subject Matter Expert from MCB Group and a facilitator from MCB’s Strategy, Research and Development Department. With an exceptional level of energy and engagement, intense discussion and sharing of insights amongst delegates, this activity was a resounding success in identifying several major challenges facing their organisations across the respective themes.
Out of 39 individual challenges identified, 15 were shortlisted as particularly resonating with delegates’ banks and financial institutions. Using a live scoring exercise, a prioritised list was generated, with the five highest scoring challenges listed below:
1. Lack of technical expertise amidst the increased cybersecurity risk;
2. KYC issues hampering financial inclusion;
3. Talent management, retention and development;
4. Gaps in customer relationship management and;
5. IT, Digitalisation and Transformation Programme Expertise.
The end result of this facilitated and thematic activity was a collegial consensus on the main challenges regional banks are currently struggling with, and therefore pointing the way to actionable priorities for Africa Forward Together’s regional community of banks. The full findings from AFT’s Meeting of Minds activity will be published and shared this year, contributing to the region’s thought leadership and helping to further the conversation about developing solutions to key challenges affecting regional banks and financial institutions.