Interview with Paul Richardson, Director, Barclays Wealth

Business, Career, Insight, Leadership, Leadership Brand, Personal Brand

Paul Richardson is a Director of Barclays Wealth, the Wealth Management arm of Barclays plc where his role is Global Head of Sports Media and Entertainment. We have had a couple of conversations on the power of image and personal branding, and I wanted to explore further…

It seems that Paul has always had an interest in sports and media – he started his career as a solicitor specialising in this field before becoming head of legal and business affairs for the sports marketing group, API, which later became Octagon Marketing.

In 2000 Paul joined Coutts as Head of the Sports and Entertainment division before being made Head of London Private Banking in 2004. He moved to Barclays Wealth in August last year.

I asked Paul what image means to him… “Image is your personal brand, the way that you convey yourself to the outside world. It is a collection of your brand values… professionalim, honesty, integrity… Initially its about what we see, how someone looks, after that, its about picking up on someone’s brand values by observing their actions.”

Paul says that whilst we are aware of the impact of others image, he likes to take the time to form a view or make a decision about someone. “People can look the part, however, once they start talking to you, or if their body language is incongruent, the warning signals may flare…”

In a market that has traditionally hired from its own ranks, Barclays Wealth has embarked on a programme of ‘lateral thinking’ in growing their now multi-skilled and multi-experienced team. “We launched this new and thorough approach with the understanding that we can educate people on the technical aspects of the role… we look for the raw material… an individual’s substance and brand values, combined with their professional experience and areas of interest.”

Paul’s clients are the rich and famous – I asked him about celebrity. “We are all the same, my clients are good at what they do, they are just doing it in the public eye… they expect professional, objective advice.”

And does he adapt his image depending on who he is meeting? “Its about dressing appropriately… if I am there in a business capacity, then I need to look the part, however, it would be rather strange for me to attend something like a concert in a shirt and tie…”

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