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HNB crowned winners at The Bankers’ Debate 2016


HNB debate team with Jonathan Alles, Managing Director/CEO, HNB, Dilshan Rodrigo, Chief Operating Officer, HNB and Chiranthi Cooray, Chief Human Resource Officer/DGM-HR, HNB.




Determined performances and decisive arguments across four hotly contested match ups helped HNB to clinch victory at the finals of The Bankers’ Debate 2016 held at Galadari Hotel recently.

Organised by the Association of Professional Bankers - Sri Lanka with a view to enhancing communication and presentation skills among professional bankers, the competition was based on the Cross Examination Debate Association rules requiring two-man teams from each bank to construct winning arguments in support or opposition to the topic: ‘Banks should invest more in digital technology than in people to succeed in future’.

“We are certainly very proud of our performance at the Bankers’ Debate and I would firstly like to express my sincere gratitude to my team-mate, Mr. Nalindra Ferdinando and to the extended debate team which supported us every step of the way. We were also given vital advice and encouragement from our corporate and senior management teams and it was really through this combined team effort that HNB was able to achieve victory,” HNB Senior Manager – Card Centre and Debate Team Captain, Roshantha Jayatunge stated. In that regard, he also expressed his thanks on behalf of HNB to the opposing teams including this year’s finalists from Sampath Bank for a highly competitive and well-contested debate series.

“This competition has been an invaluable learning experience for myself and for HNB. The experience of debating on a challenging topic helped us to not only sharpen our debate skills but to actually gain a much deeper understanding of the value of both technological innovation and human resources. Coming at a time when HNB itself launched its New World Banking, focusing on Digital transformation, our Management has never lost sight of the importance of people and the power of what they can contribute. Being able to argue on both sides of this topic allowed the tension between these two concepts to come out more organically and as result, we were able to see new perspectives emerge which was very illuminating,” Ferdinando added.

Given the many benefits that the competition gave rise to, Jayatunge urged Sri Lanka’s banking industry members to participate in future such events and thanked the Organizing committee for introducing the debate to its members. “This was a very challenging competition but through it, we were definitely able to hone our communications skills while improving our ability to think on our feet and act decisively under pressure and we feel these are qualities which should be cultivated both amongst bankers and Sri Lankans in general,” Jayatunge concluded.

Commenting on the team’s performance, Mrs Chiranthi Cooray, Chief Human Resource Officer of HNB had this to say, “the Bank is very proud to see versatile and multi faceted stars in its fold. We encourage talent development initiatives in our quest for customer service excellence and the happiest workforce”.