Page 1

Portrait of Thomas Piske

The head trainee Thomas Piske joined LGT 26 years ago – as a trainee. Today, he heads our worldwide private banking operations with around 1000 staff. His credo? Understand clients and inspire them.

Board of Management. He has been responsible for LGT Group’s global private banking operations since 2006. “I started at the

“Listening properly is the most important task of a client advisor.” bank as a trainee, and today I’m doing CEO training”, says Thomas Piske. “Because every day I learn something new.” It’s well known that successful bankers change their employer several times during their career. For Thomas Piske that does not apply. “I’m very happy to work for the Princely Family and they have always supported me”, he says. The bank’s ownership structure guarantees stability and permits a long-term approach to work, but also active innovation. Additionally, there is the clear focus on the two business areas of private banking and asset management. “Traditionally, we are a cautious bank and we have only ever undertaken business activities that we understand thoroughly.” This consistency and circumspection are appreciated equally by clients and employees.

Counts on stability: Thomas Piske, CEO LGT Private Banking.

Thomas Piske is doing something he usually doesn’t do: he is sitting in his office. Usually he is on the move, meeting with clients, or talking to employees. His assistant keeps him informed about the things he has to take care of between the next meeting and the next client appointment. A tough day lies ahead. Nevertheless, the CEO of LGT Private Banking is relaxed. “I’m not a hectic person”, he says. In 26 years as a private banker he has also learned how to deal with difficult situations. From trainee to ongoing “CEO training” After completing his business administration studies in Innsbruck, Thomas Piske joined LGT, then called Bank in Liechtenstein, in 1986. Here he learned about banking business from the bottom up. After just twelve years he was appointed to the 12

In his private life too, the 54-year old CEO values stability: he has been married for 27 years and has three daughters and a son. He lives with his family in Schruns in the Austrian province of Vorarlberg, where he also grew up. He has very close ties with his home town. “I particularly appreciate the quality of life, which this region offers”, he explains. Thomas Piske travels a lot professionally. “Sport provides an ideal balance for me”, says the passionate skier and mountain hiker. A healthy balance between exercise and sociability is very important to him. “When I’m on a mountain hike there also has to be a break for a beer with friends”, he grins. Flair for knowing what clients need As head of LGT’s Private Banking, Thomas Piske leads around 1000 staff. Nonetheless, he still finds time to take care of some clients personally. “These relationships have developed over 15 to 20 years”, he explains. And he wants to continue to have his finger on the pulse of the business. It almost goes without saying that Thomas Piske has a flair for identifying a client’s needs.


That’s because private banking is a very emotional business and requires a great deal of empathy and sensitivity. It requires a lot of trust in a bank partner for a client to place his frequently hard-earned assets in someone else’s hands. After all, the client is delegating a certain amount of control to the bank. Criticism is often heard in the financial services industry that client advisors often attempt to impress clients with their knowledge instead of analyzing their needs. “Listening properly is the most important task of a client advisor”, he therefore stresses.

himself is a tutor, pleased to pass on his wealth of experience and knowledge to young client advisors. As a very experienced banker, Thomas Piske is a role model and an opinion-leader.

Satisfied clients are not enough for Thomas Piske – he wants them to be inspired. Knowing a client’s expectations is a prerequisite for a long-term relationship. And this includes being able to ask the client critical questions: “There is no such thing as top performance with zero risk.” Risk and return characteristics have to be carefully weighed against each other. The client advisor Philipp Ackermann exchanges views with Thomas Piske. Moreover, LGT is not a com­ Nevertheless, he is still a modest and down-to-earth man. “It’s pa­ny which aggressively markets its own products. “For the the individual that matters to me,” he says. His credo: Underclient we always seek the best possible solution available on stand clients and inspire them.  the market.”

“There is no such thing as top performance with zero risk.” In his 26 years in the industry, private banking has changed drastically. The business environment has become more difficult but at the same time more interesting and challenging. “At present we have to spend too much time dealing with the implementation of legal regulations and therefore there is less time to discuss the needs of clients”, says Thomas Piske reflectively. Add to this the fact that the requirements of clients have also changed. “The present generation is more demanding. They are better educated, better informed and have a more extensive network”, he opines. Consequently, more demands are made on client advisors. “I demand a lot from my staff and sometimes I forget to let them know how well they have performed”, he admits. But Thomas Piske also encourages and fosters his staff: he is the co-initiator of the Private Banking Master Program, a kind of internal university for LGT client advisors. Here they not only gain the necessary professional skills, they also learn how to take care of – and inspire – clients. “Typically LGT.” Thomas Piske

Thomas Piske, born in 1958, has fulfilled various functions for LGT since 1986. These have included Chairman of the Executive Board of LGT Bank in Liechtenstein and President of the Liechtenstein Bankers Association. Since October 2006, he has been CEO of LGT Group’s global Private Banking.

13

Profile for LGT Group

Portrait of Thomas Piske: The head trainee  

Thomas Piske joined LGT 26 years ago – as a trainee. Today, he heads our worldwide private banking operations with around 1000 staff. His cr...

Portrait of Thomas Piske: The head trainee  

Thomas Piske joined LGT 26 years ago – as a trainee. Today, he heads our worldwide private banking operations with around 1000 staff. His cr...

Profile for lgt_group