Financial Services – Chief Operating Officer


About the Company

Headquartered outside of the GTA, our client serves 50,000 customers with online, mobile, and telephone banking and a full range of financial products through a couple dozen branches. Additionally, they provide access to thousands of Exchange® Network surcharge-free ATMs in Canada. With over half a century of banking history and a focus on values-based personal service, our client delivers needs-based advice and financial solutions tailored to each customer. With assets well in excess of $1 billion and over 350 employees they are one of Ontario’s most highly respected FS providers. Their success is the result of dedication to customer and employee engagement. They are repeatedly recognized as one of the Best Small & Medium Employers in Canada.

Scope of Position

Reporting to the CEO, this Chief Operating Officer will lead and oversee all retail/commercial operations in pursuit of the “mission” for the company, attaining their growth and expansion objectives; ensuring delivery of enhanced service levels; as well as achieving optimal efficiencies in all areas of the business and their processes.

The scope of responsibilities for this senior executive leader covers the bulk of the company’s employees; including the entire network of retail banking Branch Operations, Contact Centre (Call Centre) Operations, as well as departments handling Wealth Management, Consumer Credit, and Commercial (SME) Services; and all groups accountable for Customer Services and Service Excellence.

This senior executive role will appeal to individuals who are passionate about delivering the highest levels possible in customer and employee engagement, and service and sales leadership, while managing risks to business objectives, cost efficiencies and profitability throughout the operations.

Functional Tasks


Key responsibilities of the role:

  • Contribute to the success of the company by respecting, upholding and demonstrating by example the the company’s “values” through words and actions – setting an example for all employees.
  • Development of, in cooperation with the CEO, the department’s strategy, objectives and goals.
    • Recommending short and long term strategies to maximize customer value;
    • Recommending annual and long term business objectives against which to measure the company’s performance, including annual budget; and
    • Recommending policies and procedures.
  • Responsible for executing the retail banking and commercial services strategic plan and consequently performance, including financial performance, against annual and long term performance targets and compliance with statutory requirements, the company’s by-laws and Board approved policies.
  • Leadership of the branch personnel and direct reports, and through them all employees, ensuring capable, highly functional leadership, with the trust and respect of employees, earned by superior decision making and communication skills and demonstrated commitment to the company’s success.
  • Optimize Customer Engagement through development and implementation of programs to build customer engagement to agreed upon levels and by fostering an environment that encourages superior levels of service delivery at every customer touch point.
  • Ensure high levels of employee engagement by delivering consistent and strong people leadership through effective communications with employees, ensuring they understand the company’s strategies and goals and to align employee activities with strategic priorities.
  • Develop robust service and sales management practices consistent with the company’s values and culture, resulting in targeted growth in portfolios and share of wallet while appropriately managing risk. As a key member of the senior executive team, to develop and to manage the execution of strategic plans.
  • Participation on the following management committees: Asset / Liability Committee (ALCO); Crisis Response Team (CRT); Senior Management Team (SMT); Consumer Credit Committee; Commercial Credit Committee; and holds the designation of Complaints Officer. Attendance at meetings of the Board of Directors as a management resource and may attend Board Committee meetings as a resource.

Key Performance Deliverables

In light of the identified responsibilities, the following are specific deliverables that the position is designed to achieve.

  • Specific key performance measures will be discussed and agreed upon with the successful candidate.

Competency Profile

The following competencies listed below define the role of Chief Operating Officer at our client –

People Management
Establishes and communicates clear priorities and sense of direction. Clarifies roles and responsibilities. Adapts management style to achieve optimum results.


Developing & Coaching Others
Accurately assesses strengths and development needs of employees. Challenges others to improve their abilities and actively supports their development. Continually provides timely and constructive feedback, coaching and challenging learning opportunities. Adjusts coaching style based on each employee’s ability and motivation level.


Expresses ideas in a clear, fluent and concise manner. Written and oral arguments are compelling and responsive to the needs of the audience. Comprehends communications from others and responds appropriately.


Integrity & Sincerity
Inspires trust and supports others through own authenticity and following up on commitments. Maintains high ethical standards both personally and professionally. Shows consistency among principles.


Customer/Client Orientation
Strives to provide customers with personalized and efficient service. Anticipates customer needs. Quickly follows up on customer contacts and complaints. Monitors and acts on measures of customer satisfaction/engagement.


Role Expertise
Demonstrates critical technical or professional knowledge/skills related to the role. Has thorough knowledge of relevant products, services and methods. Expands technical knowledge/skills and keeps up-to-date in own area of expertise.


Strategic Approach
Develops a strategic plan to realize the vision. Revises strategy in light of changing circumstances. Takes a long-term view of organizational success. Works to clarify long term organizational goals. Able to stand back from immediate problems in order to focus on more far reaching ideas.


Problem Solving
Draws parallels across situations and contexts. Divides problems into their individual elements. Develops several explanations or alternatives. Separates the core of a problem from its symptoms and can identify cause and effect.


Other competencies which will be focussed on include: commercial acumen, initiative and boundary spanning.

Preferred Experience / Education

The following indicates specific industry, academic and functional experience/qualifications that are important to the successful achievement of the identified responsibilities and performance deliverables.

  • Relevant undergraduate University degree required, plus an MBA and ideally a CFP (Certified Financial Planner) designation.
  • A minimum of ten years of progressive Financial Services industry experience with at least five years at the senior executive level running multi-branch operations and managing high performance service delivery teams.
  • Proven track record of developing and implementing major organizational and operational change initiatives in a timely manner, including the determination and establishment of appropriate and meaningful metrics. Must be able to read/interpret Financial Statements and take appropriate action based on financial performance.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in leading the development of effective strategic plans and operational programs in support of strategies.
  • A follower of consumer trends, especially regarding the evolution of consumer and commercial products in the financial services space.
  • Committed to being a visible and very approachable leader with the ability to: manage, coach, inspire, motivate and influence others.
  • Strong work ethic, well organized and with a strong commitment to achieving success.
  • Exceptional communicator … superior listening skills; well developed verbal and written communications skills; able to deliver a clear message, either publicly or privately.
  • Must be ‘hands-on’; a capable delegator but passionate about staying involved and leading by example.
  • A champion of corporate values; integrity, service excellence, care for others, fun and community engagement.

Remuneration & Benefits

  • A competitive compensation package for the successful candidate.

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