We are accountable to many stakeholders including shareholders, clients, regulators, society more broadly and of course each other. This starts with being accountable to ourselves and taking ownership of what we do and how we act. We recognize that banking is about risk management and as such we must all remember to always act as risk managers.
Each of us rightfully takes pride in our hard work and the success it delivers to our clients and the bank. It is important for all of us to take this attitude further by embracing ownership of our work and conduct. This is of course easy to do when we celebrate a job well done. Taking ownership can be even more important when things go wrong. When mistakes happen, early escalation is critical to limit any damage to our clients, the bank’s reputation and ourselves.
Banks are among the most heavily regulated businesses in the world, and for good reason. Clients entrust their savings, businesses and investments to us. Because we operate in a regulated environment, there are certain lines that cannot be crossed, and a lack of knowledge of regulations and policies is no excuse. It is the responsibility of each of us to be familiar with compliance requirements, and to conduct ourselves in accordance with the relevant laws, guidelines, policies and processes that apply to us. The bank in turn has an obligation to help us understand the rules of the road, and will leverage training, technology and digital solutions to help us achieve exemplary compliance.
As a global bank, we see ourselves as an integral part of economies and communities. We strive to put environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations at the heart of what we do as a bank. We commit to assisting our clients in the transition to a lower carbon future and reducing our own carbon footprint, while promoting the highest governance standards for ourselves and our stakeholders. In doing this, we create the conditions for our clients to succeed and the economies in which we operate to pursue sustainable growth to the shared benefit of all.
Credit Suisse has been in business for more than 165 years. We have evolved from our creation as a Swiss bank financing the national railway system to a truly global bank operating in some 50 countries. Over this time, we have learned that our success and that of our shareholders goes hand in hand with the success of those around us – the communities in which we operate. It is also important that we do our part to ensure equality, drive financial inclusion, promote human rights and enhance educational opportunities. We endorse these goals in our communities and societies through our business activities and our corporate volunteering programs. We also encourage philanthropic and personal initiatives that contribute to shared, sustainable growth.