Liz Bottomley, managing director, Private Banking at Arbuthnot Latham, tells Citywealth about life, her team and stepping in when clients need her.
Tell me about your role at Arbuthnot Latham
I head up the private bank for Arbuthnot Latham. Our clients are spread across our offices in London, Exeter, Bristol, Manchester and Dubai.
How has fintech impacted the private banking sector?
The use of modelling tools is becoming more and more prevalent. Clients can anticipate decisions and discuss their options with advisers in a more practical way. It’s important to be on the front foot with intuitive and interactive online services that can project a client’s financial plan for specific life events such as the marriage of a child, grandchildren’s school fees or retirement.
Tell us about your career journey
I have worked my way up from the bottom in private banking, so I understand the roles and the challenges my team face. I’ve also worked in commercial banking and investment management which has given me a valuable all-round level of knowledge. As a woman in a world which is still male-orientated, the most precious lesson I have learnt is to believe in myself at all times and ensure I have the best team around me.
What challenges are your clients facing?
A challenge particularly for entrepreneurial clients is that sometimes lenders are struggling to understand their cash flow, and the nuances around how they derive an income either from dividends or repayment of directors’ loans. Clients come to us when they feel like elsewhere they may be shoe-horned into a mortgage product that isn’t right for them. For example, an amortising mortgage over ten years is probably not going to work for a business-owner who takes annual dividends as opposed to a salary.
Tell me about an achievement you are most proud of
Winning Powerwomen Award for “Woman of the Year, Leadership”. This was an acknowledgement of my achievement at Arbuthnot Latham and also allowed me to be a role model to other women who are pursuing a career in the wealth management arena.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Don’t shy away from making difficult decisions.
What trends do you see in the private wealth industry?
Recent organisational reshuffles at “big names” in the wealth management sector and short term thinking about client needs. Technology is now playing a key role but it needs to be mixed with other ingredients like intellectual capital which means good quality investment skills and advice.
How do you relax after a long day?
Chatting to my three children, comparing who’s had the best day and why.