Women in Wealth Five Minute Interview: Kecia Barkawi-Hauser, Managing Partner, ValueWorks, Zurich

Date: 25 Jun 2012


Are there any private clients in the world you would really like to work with?

I’d love to have more female clients. Perhaps one of the young women in China who have come in to enormous wealth.

Are women really going to take over the world, if so how?

I hope they will and I am sure women have the power. Here in Switzerland and probably this is true in Europe too, I know this will be really difficult with the business related dominance of men throughout industries. However in Asia and Africa, I have great hope that that women will leapfrog men and take over key functions.
What is the most interesting or unusual private client deal you have ever been involved with?

Convincing a young client to become a philanthropist, coaching his wife to become a board member of the charity and seeing the impact of their work. It’s so inspiring.

What lessons have you learned that you could share with women starting out in the finance industry?

It is important to find the right balance between being tough, focussed on business and female at the same time.
What initiatives do you have or do you think there should be for women?

Quotas are something that need to be look at more widely, not just for boards but in management. It is also important that women support each other to climb up the career ladder. In 2010 the UN set UN Women For Gender Equality And Empowerment.

( It would be wonderful to see these initiatives on all boards and in all countries.

Do you think the British government should legislate to bring women on boards as they did in Norway?
Yes I am in favour of quotas but I think the 40% in Norway is to high and 25% is better and should be introduced across all countries.

What are your three USP’s for working with uhnw clients?
Personalise your services, work in a niche market and remain truly female.

What is the best thing that has ever been said about you or you have done or won?

The nicest compliments come from my husband but I think the fact that I am President of the Swiss Association of Trustees and have established a company with twelve employees of which eight are women speaks for me.
What is the next big thing in private wealth management?
Compliant structures, focus on niches, top service and professionalism. Preservation of wealth will be key.
What charities do you admire and why?

I would like to mention 1000 Peace Women, a powerful worldwide initiative.

What is the dummies guide to making it to the top in finance or pwm?

Be smart, be efficient, be truly professional, be honest and focus on the future.

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