Bank of America is one of the best managed institutions in the world that provides a variety of financial services to the customers. It deals with different types of customers such as corporations, the government, and individuals, small, middle and large sized businesses. The bank serves over 40 countries which show that it is a well established institution in the international market. Some of the services it provides include accounts deposits, financial advice, credit and debit card services, checking accounts and lending facilities in sectors such as real estate investment. The bank provides these services with the application of modern technology such credit and debit cards to ensure efficiency in its activities.
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Bank of America was started by Amadeo Giannini in the year 1904. The bank was then known as bank of Italy. The major aim of the bank at this time was to provide services to the immigrants who were discriminated in the provision of financial services by the other banks (Goldsmith, 2009). The bank from then engaged in other businesses such as provision of insurance services to the people. It engaged in many mergers and acquisitions with its rivals and this made it to compete effectively with the other banks. It is through its good performance that it was able to accumulate its huge amount of assets that it owns today.
As the bank was growing in terms of assets, it was able to establish branches in California and after here, the bank moved to the other parts of the United States. Currently, it does not only serve the United States but serves various countries in the world. It is due to its strategies that bank of America has been able to succeed in the financial market. The bank is currently ranked the 5th largest company in terms of revenue in the United States. As a non oil company, bank of America is ranked as the third largest company. It has also been declared as the third largest company in the world.
Bank of America and the capital market
In the capital market, bank of America is an important player. It is a major source of capital for many companies and individuals. The success of many companies can be attributed to this bank. During the year2010, the bank issued capital to companies and individuals up to amount worth 60 million United States dollars. This shows that a large proportion of the equity in the capital market is provided by the bank (Johnston, 2000). The bank also provides financial advice to the firms it issues loans to. It advises on the best capital structure that its clients should adopt in order to ensure that the wealth of their shareholders is maximized. The bank is also able to offer some other risk management services such as hedging in the capital market.
Factors behind the success of bank of America
Bank of America has highly qualified employees who have the experience of advising the investors in the capital market. They ensure that their clients are aware of the risks that are in the capital market and these clients are then able to take the necessary precautions to avoid these risks. This ensures that their clients succeed in their endeavors and repay their loans to the bank.
The good management of bank of America is a factor behind its success. The reputation of this management is recognized worldwide. The management ensures that the organization has the necessary resources to facilitate the performance of the organization. In the first place, the maintenance of qualified and motivated employees is a major factor to the management. In the selection of employees, the highly qualified candidates are selected and then given the necessary training to deliver quality services to the customers. Issues of corruption have never been reported in the employment processes and this is why the employees from this organization perform very well in their duties. These qualified personnel are developed to become the future managers in the organization and this is why the management of bank of America has always performed excellently.
Motivation of employees in the work place has been prioritized. The employees are rewarded well in terms of the salaries they earn. This is why there are no cases of employee turnover in this organization. This saves the costs of the organization in that it remains with highly trained and experienced employees. The organization has gone further to help the employees in acquiring luxurious vehicles. This shows the employees how caring the organization is to them and in return, the employees give quality services to the organization facilitating its success. The employees have great hopes in their future in that the organization provides opportunities for development in their careers (Johnston, 2000). The employees have also been supported by the organization to build their houses which serves to motivate the employees in the bank.
The management integrity can be witnessed by their ability to effectively manage risks. The organization ensures that it deals with trustworthy customers who never fail to repay their loans. They do not only give financial assistance but they also offer advice to their clients so that the funds they lend to them can be managed effectively leading to the success of these clients. The management has succeeded in diversification of risks (Daft, 2008). It offers a variety of services to the customers such that when one service is not performing well in the market, the bank benefit from the demand of other services. It offers loans to various customers, insurance services to people and mortgages to real estate owners. In addition, its international strategy whereby it is opening its branches in various countries is a way of diversifying risks that the bank faces.
Another strategy that the management has always undertaken to facilitate its success is the use of modern technology. The organization has been at the forefront in ensuring that it incorporates any new technology in the provision of its services. In the long run, this move has facilitated efficiency in the provision of services to the customers. An example of this technology in the organization is about the issue of electronic debit and credit cards. This technology enables the customers to get services from the many ATM’s located in various places.
Ethics is an important factor that any growing corporation should consider if it has to succeed. The management of bank of America is aware of this fact and this is why it has always ensured that ethical standards are maintained in the organization. Ethics refers to the accepted behavior among a group of people (Daft, 2008). The code of ethics in bank of America is updated after every one year to ensure that the changes in the business environment are taken care of. These ethical standards ensure that good relationship exist between the shareholders, customers and the management.
The code of ethics ensures that the customers receive the best services from the bank. All the employees in the bank are aware that they should be able to make the appropriate decisions so that the customers do not suffer due to the decisions made by the employees in the bank. In this regard, the employees are required to be well informed so that they can make the best decisions. Consulting in the bank is allowed such that the employees who are not sure regarding a particular issue can consult with the management to make the best decisions.
The ethics in the bank also ensure that the information about the clients they serve is confidential. This ensures that the employees do not use any personal information for their personal benefit. The employees and the bank in general is against taking advantage of the situation that the clients may be facing. These standards that are maintained by the bank have ensured that the customers have developed great trust in them. This has created customer loyalty to the organization and this can be attributed to the increasing revenue to the organization.
The organization ensures that it deals with its competitors and suppliers fairly such that it does not take advantage of the circumstances that these players may be facing in the market. These stakeholders in the market are dealt with the greatest level of honesty. Colluding with the competitors is not an acceptable behavior in the bank. The employees are made to feel responsible to the organization and this ensures that unethical acts such as corruption and bribes are never witnessed in the bank of America (Bernand, 2004). The employees are also required to report any illegal act that their colleagues may engage in.
The highest level of professionalism is demonstrated among the employees. In its code of conduct, the bank has taken care of the differences in the cultural backgrounds of the employees. The ethnicity, race and experience of individuals are addressed in the code of conduct. Recognizing diversity in the work place ensures that effective teams are created in the work place. The employees in the work place feel comfortable regardless of their differences due to the ethical standards set by the bank. The bank also provides equal chances to the employees to develop their future. This is an important measure in ensuring that the employees are motivated.
Bank of America is very much aware of the financial needs of their shareholders. They ensure that their actions are not against the wish of the shareholders and that everything they undertake is for the good of the shareholders. This is important considering that the shareholders are the owners of the corporation and they have invested in the company with the expectation of returns. The bank considers it ethically important to reward the shareholders effectively so that they can support the bank fully in its operations.
The ethics of bank of America can be summarized into; ensuring that the information in the organization is used for the rightful purpose, taking care of the members of the society in which the bank operates, ensuring that individuals in the work place relate in a professional manner, making informed decisions for the benefit of the clients, take care of all the resources owned by the bank, being honest and fair to all the stakeholders of the bank including the competitors and ensuing that the laws and regulations of the country are obeyed. These ethical standards are comprehensive and all the employees in the bank are aware of them (Bernand, 2004).
As an international organization, the bank has done its best in ensuring that the best ethical standards are in place. Them management has ensured that all the stakeholders in the organization are favored by the ethical standards. The organization has also taken the necessary measures to ensure that the dynamics in the business environment are captured in the code of ethics. The continuous review of the code of ethics shows a high level of integrity in the management (Shaw, 2011).
The ethical standards maintained by the bank of America are very important for the organization in that the reputation of the bank is maintained by these ethical standards. The ethical standers also take care of the international environment that the organization is likely to work in. it therefore shows that the management of bank of America is very much aware of the importance of ethical standards for an international business and this is healthy for the corporation.
iii) Corporate social responsibility.
Another important strategy that is behind the success of the bank of America is corporate social responsibility. The corporation has worked closely with the communities they serve to ensure that the communities receive tangible benefits from the organization (Goldsmith, 2009). This is an important strategy in that the community in return supports the organization fully in its activities. It is important for an organization to support the community considering that the community has provided the working environment and the resources in the organization such as labor (Sanford, 2011).
In low income societies, the bank has supported the community development project such as support in achieving access to renewable energy projects. The bank has also made sure that some of the employees in the organization originate from the society they serve. The bank has ensured that scholarships are available to the needy children in the society and this has served to boost the education levels in the society. It is true to say that the bank of America spends a lot of money in corporate social responsibility. Even though this increases its operational costs, the corporation benefits from the society in return.
In summary, bank of America is one of the successful international companies in the world. This has been facilitated by the good management that has ever existed in the organization. Every strategy that the corporation undertakes is meant to improve its performance in the global society (Shaw, 2011). Good ethics in the organization, corporate social responsibility, good management and proper employee motivation are factors behind the success of the organization. For every organization that intends to grow in the global market, adopting strategies similar to those of bank of America is a crucial decision.
Johnston, M., & Johnston, M. (2000). The tumultuous history of the Bank of America. Washington, DC: BeardBooks.
Bernand, A., & Bank of America Securities Limited. (2004). The Bank of America guide to advanced correlation products. London: Incisive Financial Pub.
Daft, R. L. (2008). Management. Mason, OH, USA: Thomson Southwestern.
Sanford, C. (2011). The Responsible Corporation: Reimagining Sustainability and Success. John Wiley & Sons, Limited.
Goldsmith, Marshall, Carter, Louis, & Best Practice Institute. (2009). Best Practices in Talent Management: How the World’s Leading Corporations Manage, Develop, and Retain Top Talent, Epub Edition. Pfeiffer & Co.
Shaw, W. H. (2011). Business ethics. Boston, MA: Wadsworth/Cengage Learning.