Advice and Whiskey with Robin Robeson

Robin Robeson is the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Guaranty Bank, and she has held past positions in a consulting company and technology software company. She sat down with us to share a drink, and some culture insights.

BY Jenna deJong

Jan 2019

“Culture needs to be purposeful.” 

“It has to be a culture that fits that company. I don’t think one culture is better than another culture. I think it needs to fit the workplace, fit their mission and vision and values. It needs to represent who the company is, like their personality.” 

“I don’t think a culture has to come from the top-down. I don’t think most things need to come from the top-down. The culture does have to be supported from the top-down.” 

“I would take some personal responsibility [if an employee was disengaged], that it was partially my responsibility to reach out to them, get to know them better. Find out what it is that they like about the company and what it is that they don’t necessarily like or what they think could be better.” 

“I went to my manager, what he said was ‘you can’t be afraid to make a decision just because it may end up being a wrong decision, because even if it is a wrong decision, all that means is that you just have to make another decision. It’s usually not the end of the word.’”

“I think it’s really important you get people in the right jobs that fit their strengths and fit their skill sets because that is key.” 

“Especially for an established company, you have to hire people that fit the culture. Just because someone may be the smartest person in the room or may have the right educational background, they still may not be the right person for your company.” 

“We’ve hired people at the bank that haven’t had any banking experience at all, just because we thought they brought something new and different and we thought they would fit in our culture really well. And most of the time, that works out. I can teach anyone banking if they want to learn but I can’t always find bankers who are great team players.”