BANK ON IT: Justine Wren, Private Banking Advisor

By Madeline Martin on Friday, March 31, 2023

Name: Justine Wren  |  Age: 26  |  Hometown: Hot Springs  |  Education: On-the-job Training | Job Title: Private Banking Advisor, VP  |  NMLS#: 1582526  |  Employer: Arvest Bank

Why did you choose a career in this field?

At first, my choice to go into banking was simply out of necessity. I did not know what direction I wanted to go in life, but I knew that I needed to go somewhere. I took a position as a teller and quickly realized that banking was something I could build a career out of. From that point on, it was just a matter of working hard and moving up. 

Whey did you decide to do on-the-job training instead of a degree?

When I started my career at Arvest, I was a new mother and wife, so leveraging on-the-job training made more financial sense than attending college. Thankfully, Arvest has provided hands-on experience/learning specific job functions for me to pursue a career I love and enjoy.

What are some common misconceptions about your job?

Just because the banking sector is all about financial numbers, it does not mean that one must possess a degree in finance if one aspires to be a banker or work in another field at Arvest. There are positions within the bank that do not require a college degree but comparable years of work experience. I have witnessed many associates advance to other careers at Arvest.

What skills do people need to succeed in this field?

Be a good listener. Sometimes a customer doesn’t know what to ask for, but listening to their story can give you the clues you need to assist them. Most people are not aware of all of the services their bank offers, so make sure that you know them. The opportunity will arise and you will be able to offer your expertise in something that your client didn’t even realize you or your bank could assist with.

Who is your financial role model?

My private banking partner, Tanya Lanier. She was the first private banker for Arvest in the Hot Springs area and was instrumental in growing the program into what it is today. She opened the door for me to be the second private banker in our market.

Why do you think students should consider a career like yours?

If you enjoy talking to people and building relationships with them, then banking is a great route to pursue. Your customers quickly turn into friends, and you get to walk with them through some big milestones in their lives.

How do you feel about this statement: “I can’t work in a financial role because I’m not good at (or hate) math.”

Banking is so much more than just math. Let’s be honest; technology does most of it for us now. Working in a financial role is about seeing a customer’s need and filling it. It's about knowing the products and services that you can offer, and which ones would enhance their daily life the most.