The rising market is not the only reason that Anne Copeland is optimistic about the growth prospects of the Private Wealth Management division of Regions Bank. The newly appointed head of the division anticipates a “good bit of organic growth” from one of the most basic of business activities: cross-selling.

“There is so much opportunity to provide much stronger, much better client experiences not only for those clients currently within private wealth but across the Region’s franchise,” she said in a telephone interview.

While Copeland did not say so directly, the focus on cross-selling is a shift from the old way of working at Regions. In April 2012, the Birmingham, Alabama-based regional bank underwent a major reorganization that brought its disparate investment-related businesses under one roof. 

Prior to that reorganization, the trust, private banking, investment management and other wealth groups worked independently and clients likely had not enjoyed the “full breadth of Regions’ services and expertise,” Copeland explained. “The groups probably were not as embedded in working together with other teams across Regions as ideally as we would have liked,” she said.

To change that, Copeland has implemented a new business model that reinforces the partnering and teamwork she would like to see. The new “generalist holistic relationship manager model” revolves around generalist relationship managers whose job it is to make sure that the right resources are brought to clients, Copeland said.

Over the past year, Copeland has focused on coaching and training advisors in the bank’s new service approach. All new wealth advisors, for example, went through an eight-month training program to build a “good broad generalist foundation.”  “We really are teaching them to be the generalist and have a good understanding of all the businesses,” Copeland said.

Copeland has also worked closely with the leadership, “empowering them to spend the bulk of their time coaching team members to provide great client experiences.” In addition, she has focused on an enterprise initiative called Regions360 that aims to gain a deeper appreciation of client needs.

Copeland joined Regions Bank in April 2012 soon after the wealth businesses were integrated under the then newly formed Regions Wealth Management Group. She stepped into a new role overseeing strategy, client experience, product management, marketing, communications and training. Her job was to “find the synergies across the groups” and identify any service gaps, including those left in the wake of last year’s sale of the bank’s brokerage unit Morgan Keegan.

Earlier this month, she was named head of Private Wealth Management, one of the four divisions that make up the Regions Wealth Management Group. Private Wealth Management combined the former private banking and personal trust groups. 

“I’m fortunate enough to have had a lot of experience over the years in quite a few different business models,” she said of the new job.

Private Wealth Management targets individuals with more than $500,000 in investable assets. The division complements Regions Investment Services, which caters to mass-affluent consumers, or those with less than $500,000 in investable assets, Copeland said.

Copeland oversees a team of 500 wealth advisors, trust advisors, lending advisors and portfolio managers spread throughout 50 offices in 16 states.  She says that the staffing level is in “the right place for the size of the business” but with growth expectations, she is open to making “opportunistic hires” to help meet the anticipated growth over time.

“Regions sees the Private Wealth Management business as a really nice growth opportunity moving forward,” Copeland said.

Private Wealth Management currently has $22 billion in assets under management. Copeland would not specify how much growth she anticipates in the future.

READ MORE: Regions Bank Names Head of Private Wealth Management


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