Passion - ASB NZ

ASB NZ adopts Day 6 of 30 days of Ethics and explores passion. 


The opportunity to reflect on the values of my organisation, ASB Bank, for the 30 days of Ethics couldn’t have come at a better time. Over the past week we have talked to over 1200 of our most senior people about the importance of values to our business.

As a bank we are trusted by our over 1 million customers to look after their financial wellbeing. However we can only do this if our people are committed to living our values daily. To garner this commitment from our team we foster a culture that the values are more than just words written on a piece of paper. They must have significance. Because quite simply if our values are not meaningful; they’re meaningless.

The reality is that ASB’s values are not dissimilar to those of other organisations; they are Integrity, Ambition, Caring and Passion. However, the difference is the way our team uses them every day to guide their decision making to create the best possible outcomes for our customers. Our values are the DNA of our bank.

I’m going to put the spotlight on probably the most unusual of our values – Passion. I’m sure many people wonder why a bank would have Passion as a core value. Everyone who joins ASB is invited on to the team because we can see the fire in their belly, the desire to create the best experiences for our customers and to go above and beyond to get the job done. Our people are energetic and enthusiastic; they are highly committed and love what they do. We sum this up as having passion. And if our people are to succeed both for themselves and our customers they need to live this value in spades.

Last year we aligned ourselves to another team that is renowned for their passion – the All Blacks, New Zealand’s most loved sports team. Our partnership with the All Blacks was a natural fit simply as the values both organisations live by align. Passion was one of those. As part of the partnership announcement we asked our team to tell us what they were passionate about. The result wasn’t what we necessarily expected. Our people didn’t tell us they were passionate about their jobs, or careers or even how passionate they were about the All Blacks. Instead they told us what really made them come alive. And this ranged from visiting their home town to playing video games with their kids, knitting tea cosies, running, volunteering, colouring in, surfing, cooking, eating…the list was endless and every story we were told showed exactly why that activity made the person spark. What I am trying to get across here is that for ASB it doesn’t matter what our team is passionate about – it is that they are passionate that is important. Passion comes in many different forms but fundamentally it is a transfer of energy and enthusiasm. To have a team of people that can do this is the secret sauce of our success and why ASB has passion is written boldly as one of our values.

Graeme Edwards

General Counsel & Company Secretary
Graeme has over 25 years’ experience as a legal adviser in the financial services sector in New Zealand and Australia.


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