Spiral Growth Of Banks In Nigeria.Manpower Problems And Solutions



Growth of Banks – Let us recall that the centre of the problems of bank in Nigeria is the lack of clear cut objectives, absence of effective and well structured organizational system, inadequate use of modern budgetary control procedures, poor staffing techniques and poor manpower development plans. 

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It is in recognition of these inadequacies of banks that the federal military government accepted the recommendation of the committee on the Nigeria financial system that relates staff training.

The committee recommended that:


  1. The central bank of Nigeria should initiate and finance large scale training for banking industry


  1. Training now available in the Universities should be extended to the polytechnics.


  1. Staff of commercial and merchant banks need to be retained from short term operations to long term operations.


  1. The government should establish finance institutes for training of personnel to supply the requirement of financial system for high level manpower.


Therefore, the credibility of the projections of the manpower needs in the banking industry will be determine by the rate of which recommendations of the Okigbo committee on Nigeria financial system are implemented.  The committee pleaded much emphasis on training and thus focused on training as a corrective strategy for improved manpower performance.  But according to Ejiofor P.N. he is of the opinion that efficiency of training as a charge agent is questionable.  According to him, top policy makers erroneously see training  as the panacea for all our management and social well being.  He maintained that our training modules, the knowledge of what to do, does not necessary guarantee willingness to do it.  Leading the horse to the stream does not guarantee that the executive horse to the stream of management, to practice what is learnt is another thing.

Yet the governor of the central bank of Nigeria on addressing the audience at the launching of the Nigeria institute of Bankers in November 1977 hinted that the banking industry of higher learning would be clearly involved in manpower training.  The exercise he said was aimed at producing on a continuous basis corps of well training professional bankers.  He assumed that there are at moment a shortage of supervising and junior management personnel in almost all the banks in the country.  Therefore, banks on their own without the intervention of the government could strive to evolve a well coordinated training programme which will enable them to face the great task ahead. This requirement would necessitate the drawing up of plans for the gradual development of branches by training of staff for specialized area in the banking industry.  Training itself is not an end but a means of improving present job performance and preparation for the next job.  For an effective and efficient training on industry certain principles of training must be followed and hence, the training needs must be analysed with attention focused on the job and its requirements as well as the job holder in meeting those requirements.

Having analyzed the training needs, the training programmed is then design.  training programme is the summary of all the training required to enable an individual perform a particular job to the required standard.  This involving identifying the objectives, specifying the sequence choosing the learning methods location, instruction and drawing up the programme and the implementation of the training programme.  Each element of the programme must be considered o ensure that the training achieves the desired results.  The central process of industry training is learning, all learning programme for employees are based on the expectation will modify the behaviour of the employees who have participated.

According to Kennedy and Domelly the following benefits can be expected by a company from its training.




  1. Improves the work performance of the employees
  2. The standard or quality of work required by the company is more likely to be achieved and maintained
  3. A greater volume of work can be achieved
  4. Greater versatility and adoption of new methods
  5. Less need for close supervision and
  6. A reduction in work error, frustrations due to lack of opportunity for training and development

However, Andrew Sikula maintained that the principles of learning associated with industrial training include recognizing individual difference inability, motivating the trainee availability of material for active practice, scheduling of the training period, the feedback techniques, methods of reward and punishment.  When these principles of learning are followed, effective learning could easily be achieved.  Different method can thus be used to impart the training.  These methods can be sued individually and or in combination and they include:



  1. On the job method
  2. Demonstration and examples
  3. Stimulation
  4. Appreciation
  5. Classroom method like lectures, conference case studies, role playing and programmes instructions.
  6. Other training method include association audio visual aids etc


The  particular training method used depends on time, cost effect, instructors preferences, depth of knowledge required, background of the trainee and many other factors.  Which ever method that facilitate the desired learning is chosen.

Having chose the appropriate method of training for a particular industry another important aspect is the evolution of the training efforts to make sure it has attained its goals.

A useful definition of evaluation according to Kennedy and Domelly is:

“The assessment of the total value of a training system, training course or programme is social as well as a financial term.  It attempt to measure the overall cost benefit of the course or programme and not just the achievement of its laid down objectives.  Evaluation is therefore concerned with measurement and embraces the total training situation.  With references to the above view, evaluation is necessary for a number of reason:


  1. It enables the effectiveness of an investment in training to be appraised
  2. It provides feedback about trainees and training methods
  3. It indicate the extent to which objectives have been met.
  4. The result of the evaluation can be used to improve subsequent programme
  5. It provides data which can justify expenditure on training a very significant factor as companies become more concise on training cost.


As to who and who should be involved in the evaluation f training.  Tracey makes the point that evaluation must be co-operative and that the main parties to evaluation are or should be the trainee, his manager, his work group, his trainer, his company and possibly the relevant raining board.  One inference which we can make from the above citation is that both the financial institution training centre as a training board the commercial and merchant banks as well as the trainer and the trainees should be involve in the evaluation of any training programme.  It is pertinent to note that the majority of training in industry and commerce takes place in a busy work setting and a vigorous scientific approach to evaluation involving pre and post training task, control and experiment group etc.  although very desirable but not practicable.  This is the problem which faces the practicing training officers or agencies in attempting to evaluate training. This problem can be resolve to some extend by adopting the following pragmatic approach to evaluation:


  1. Set clearly training objective expressed as possible as in behavioural terms
  2. Identify and record the major costs involved in the training and
  3. Test the benefits on random sampling basis concentrating on immediate outcome where possible.

These three steps will go along towards helping a company to maximize its benefits from investment in training.

At this juncture, it is pertinent to as where does the training of bank staff in the Nigeria banking industry being carried out and what facilities do they utilize in implementing such training efforts.  Therefore, the training of  bank staff in the Nigeria banking industry is carried out within the industry by:


  1. The Nigeria institute of bankers (now chartered institute of banker of Nigeria)
  2. The financial training centre, a central training institution for all banks established by the bankers committee and
  3. The individual banks.

Let us then examine the role of each of the  above and determine what each has contributed in generating skilled manpower for the banking industry in Nigeria.



The Nigeria institute of bankers which was resisted in 1977 has, among its objectives, to help promote banking education in the country with the view in helping staff employed in the banking industry to acquire modern banking techniques and prepare  them for higher responsibilities in the various institutions.  In line with this objectives, the Nigeria institute of bankers doe not only to acquire modern banking techniques and prepare  them for higher responsibilities in the various institutions.  In line with this objectives, the Nigeria institute of bankers doe not only held and conduct examinations in banking for its student but it also maintain a library at its secretariat, thereby availing members the opportunity of making references to the rich collections available in order to assist candidates who are preparing for professional examinations.  The institute organizes on a continuous basis, evening classes and  revision course with the assistance of professionally trained and dedicated members of the Nigeria institute of bankers drawn from the banks.  Universities and polytechnics, in addition to this the institute carries out other training programmes from time to time, through seminars, workshops, symposia’s public lecture etc.  on selected topic issues affecting the banking industry.

But it appears that the Nigeria institute of bankers was not sufficiently equipped to regulate and central the training of potential bankers, admission of members into the profession, maintenance of standards and supervision of conduct of members of the profession.   It is therefore, against this background that by decree no 12 of 1990, the federal military government established the chartered institute of bankers and simultaneously dissolved the Nigeria institute of bankers which the new chartered institute was meant to replace. By the decree, the chartered institute is charged with the general duty of:


  1. Determining in what standard of knowledge and skill are to be attained by persons seeking to become register members of the banking profession
  2. Reviewing those standards from time to time
  3. Securing he establishment and maintenance of a register of the different categories of the members of the institute
  4. The publication from time to time list of these members.

The part v vi section 16 of the decree want to make it liable in court of law for any person to hold himself up to the public as banker or practices banking for remuneration whether anticipated or already received shall be deemed to have committed on offence if he is not a registered member of the institute.  It does not matter if the person merely renders professional service or detail relating to the practice of banking procedures.  Only employees in the civil service specialized opinions on principles of banking are protected from liability.

Also section 12 of part III unequivocally places the institute at the apex of banking education in Nigeria.  It states in this part that, it shall be the duty of members of the council to keep themselves informed of the council to keep themselves informed of the nature of the instruction given at approved institution to persons attending approved courses of training and the examination as a result of which approved qualifications are granted.

This provision makes it mandatory for the institute to draw close to all the institutions of higher learning offering banking and finance related courses as well as specialized discipline including the post graduate schools for better co-operation and standard of skill in banking education.

Also the conduct of ACIB examinations and the issuance of the certificate received formal legitimacy in section 16 part vi of miscellaneous and general provision.  The council can make rules:


  1. For the training in banking of suitable persons in banking methods and practice
  2. For the supervision and regulation of engagement training and transfer of such persons.

The researcher is of the opinion that even though the decree unequivocally places the institute at the apex of banking  education Nigeria, the theory practice gap still exist. This is because most of the lecturers in the banking and finance related discipline in the situations of higher learning are not practicing bankers and cannot be registered institute of banker of Nigeria.  Thus, the importing of the same standardized knowledge and skill by the theories and practitioners seems to be since both of them do not seem to speak the same language and neither do they seem to operate on the same wavelength



In order to make better the acute shortage of quality manpower in the banking industry, the bankers committee established the financial institution training centre in September, 1981.  The objective for which the institution was established include:


  1. To carry on the business of training and education of personnel employed or to be employed by banks and other financial institutions


  1. To protect, promote and advance the knowledge and practicing of banking and finance throughout Nigeria by the organization of seminars, lectures workshops and other practical and theoretical courses.


  1. To collect and disseminate statistical and other information relating to banking and finance, commerce, trade and other related disciplines


  1. To co-operate with the Nigeria institute of bankers


  1. To print and publish any newspaper periodical, building, booking and leaf lets that the institution may think desirable for the promotion of this objectives/.


  1. It should be emphasized that most of the staff trained by the institutions are management staff.



In addition to the training facilities we have mentioned above, the banks including the control bank of Nigeria have their own training programmes.  A good number of commercial and training schemes which are run at their training centres. These courses are tailored to meet individual bank manpower requirements.

But the facilities available for training of bank staff in Nigeria banking industry are both staff in Nigeria banking industry are both internal and external.

Internally, the banks have different approaches to training, one of which is one the job training and this involves training the employee right on the job.  This system involves explanation, demonstration practice and critics. The officer explains why a particular activity is performed, demonstrate it,. Get the trainee to practice it under supervision and criticizes the performance.  Banks find this approach of training very useful while being conscious of the fact that the quality of training received depends upon the knowledge and ability of the trainer.

Another internal approach by banks is job rotation.  This system involves moving trainees from one activity to another after specified period of time. This acquaints the trainee with various activities they are expected to learn and perform.  Job rotation may be a deliberate policy of an organization to move members of staff round various offices or departments of the institution thereby enabling them to acquire knowledge and skills of various job. This is a common practice in Nigeria banking industry.  A significant point to infer from the above is that while substantial on the job training exists in most banks under the guidance of experience employee people for future managerial responsibilities.

This explains the reason why we usually lack managerial development. Implant courses also form part of the internal approaches to training available to the bank in Nigeria, these course are generally run in the training centre of these organization and infact they are tailored to suit the manpower requirements of the respective banks.

In order to supplement the training efforts of the respective institutions in the industry, much use is made of external training facilities both within and outside the country.  All banks takes advantage of course run by outside institutions such as Nigeria institute of management (NIM), the Nigeria institute of Bankers (NIB), the administrative staff college of Nigeria (ASCON), the financial institution of training centre (FITC)., the centre for management development (CMD), the universities and polytechnics etc.

According to Ejiofor, he observed that the CMD, ASCON, ITF, NIM etc are all geared towards senior management view that training activities in the private sector may be conspicuously lop-sided and highly concentrated on the training of management and professional personnel and that little effort  is divested to junior and intermediate levels.  Apparently, the country expects the balance between the number of engineers to technicians and the managers and secretaries to just happen naturally. He concluded that these balance do not happen unless they are caused and the government takes concrete steps now to train and retain junior and intermediate levels of manpower.  High level manpower will soon find themselves incapacitated by an insufficient number of junior and intermediate level of banking.

Hence there will be  cases of managers with no secretaries and typists. The implication of this is that junior and intermediate level of manpower in the banking industry should be trained and retained, this account for the absence of good banking customer relationships among  cashier in our banks.

As for the universities and polytechnics, Julius Onah pointed out that while the universities and polytechnics are designed for the intermediate or middle level manpower which is very much needed in the Nigeria economy.  Therefore, it must not be assumed that such as young people come out of these institutions. Then automatically they have been trained to be leaders and managers.  The question to ask here is, what will be out sources of training and developing the right manpower for our banking industry? It is therefore, the determination nation of the adequacy of the institutionalized sources described above.



The major capital stock in an industrialized advanced country is not its physical equipment:  it is the body of knowledge amassed from tested findings, discoveries of empirical sciences and the capacity and the training of its population to use the knowledge.

According to Oshisami, development does not start with goods:  It starts with people and their education, origination and discipline.  Without these three elements all resource remain latent or untapped.  Every country, no matter how divested, which had a high level of education, organization and discipline produces an economic miracle.

The central idea in the above is that manpower is the life wire of any economy or organization.  It produces and controls other factors of production and hence requires thorough provisions, utilization and preservation.  It is in this recognition that Ozoana saw that banking in our content is a labour intensive industry and consequence manpower development is a vital factor. The country has not been matching on in the reproduction of personnel with the right orientation and training to man banking services.  He maintained that banks should familiarize themselves with other management techniques such as office planning, work study economics, quality control and cybernetic control.  He went on to say that economics is the study of the relationship between workers performance and their environment.  This tries to emphasis that the workers job has to be studied as a whole with equipment, office and work planning design accordingly.

Quality control in terms of services important for the growth of banking services.

There is need for a clearly set  standard of services to be achieved. This should also related to the cost involved. Some of these involved the application of scientific processes such as operational research (OR), linear programming (LP) and other mathematical models facilitating urgent services as well as minimizing costs.   These are increasing being used in the banking industry through in the western countries. Other theories used to the advantage of banking services include, the querying theory, which has been used to examine problems related to waiting period at the counters and management by objectives. These are therefore the nature of knowledge and skill which the present manpower are to meet in order to match the growth of banking industry.  It should be recalled that section 39 91) of the central bank of Nigeria act requires the central bank to promote and maintain adequate and reasonable banking services for the public.  The emphasis is on “adequate banking service” banking services can be adequate only if the customer does not have to make great to obtain the services.  They can be adequate only if the customer does not travel a great distance to find a banking facility.  They  can also be adequate if the customer does not suffer humiliation to long and open waiting in long queve to deposit or withdraw his own money or buy the favour of a clerk or officer of the bank to obtain some financial accommodation.  It cannot be adequate where there is under developed manpower.

According to Asabia, there are some qualities which are essential for high level performance by a banker.  First a banker must have sound knowledge of money management.  There are a lot of people who are crammed full of technical information of all kinds in the practice of banking investment analysis etc.  but very short of knowledge, being a clear grasp and understand of their subject and the environment in which they operate secondary, there is the factor of sound judgement coupled with the courage which are persistence in acting in line with the facts as one knows them.  To many bankers according to Asabia are after victims of the delusion that hey must be seen to reflect conventional attitudes.  A third essential of a successful is what he called constructive imagination which must be brought to bear on facts.  It is this quality that separate the genius or man of action in any field from the direction.  He maintains that even though he respects stability but this is not necessarily the same as slavish adherence to obsolete principles and practices.  Banking practice need to pay more attention to the realities of the structure and behaviour of business enterprises in Nigeria while paying due regards to international practices.

In addition, Asabia concludes by emphasizing that there is the factor of integrity.  Accordingly, leadership and corporate attitude have a great deal to do with the fostering of ideal loyalty and industry among the rank and file of nay organization.  The young banker is going to be greatly influenced by  the attitude of his senior colleagues.

Therefore, until recently there were hardly any Nigeria to be found in senior management in the major bank. Recruitment training and promotion policies in the past did very little to encourage a career in banking.  Selection and training of competent bankers will require special attention owing to past neglect and recent growth. Recruitment and training will have to be geared to meet the needs of the new structures improved operational procedure and modified policy give stability is a very important pre-requisite for the banking industry, at the same time, senior management must be task to perceive and accept changes in their environment in order to survive.

There is a special need to look beyond the young levers for recruitment, the services which banks are called upon to provide today are for more sophisticated than the basic commercial banking practice which dominated the scene until the recently. Today specialist is various aspect of  money management are needed.  Having recruited suitable graduates and professional materials, their development must be carefully programme so as to prepare them for high responsibilities and ensure an effective plan.

The basic question therefore is how does a financial institutions develop the cooperate excellence, innovative and synergy found in the best corporations?

According to Oguntade, definitely, a bank with a dynamic board.  With a strategy minded management, intellectually oriented manpower base and a strong portfolio structure would tend to create a powerful corporate and for personal banking force capable of mobilizing financial resource and deliver a complex array of financial service with a view to position its at the top and of its market.

Yet according to Anaele Ihuoma, the ownership profile of most of our banks reveal absence of bankers bank.  He went on to state that apart, from board, bank, Ikeja base commercial bank which has three old soldiers on board, every merchant bank’s board room is dotted with names like David Jemibewon a retired major general and a time governor of Western state and A.D Bello a retired air vice marshal He concluded that the full implications of a bankers bank for board management relations, management staff relation, are for the overall progress and resilience will be known in months ahead.

But the researcher is of the view that the distinction between professions competence and management ability should be appreciated.  A man may be competent engineer or accountant but does not make him a competent manager.  He requires a different set of skills, knowledge etc.  in order to be able to operate as a manager.  The implication is therefore that these set of board members requires training and retraining in order to make them qualify as board members of our banks.

On the area of having intellectually oriented manpower base, the citation below will convince you about the manpower implication of spiral growth in he banking industry.  It is stated thus:

Sometimes in the 1980’s the then executive of IMB, Ebitimi Banigo, traveled to the united state and recruited armies that have MBA.  They were soon to flood IMB.  Many visitors to the bank’s Victoria Island IMB plaza would imagine that they were somewhere in Manhattan.  But no source had they settled down to business, the poacher appeared on the scene living one executive after the either with mouth watering offers.  The result and top executive of the new banks read like a premier of who was who at IMB.  At the last court, “that bank has provided at least Chief executives for the banks.  The above is exactly what is happening in most of our banks.

Therefore, the change tasks of management have direct consequences on the structure change expended in personnel policy.  The demand of highly qualified staff is gradually increasing and will continue to increase.  What is needed is not just high intelligence technical know how and languages, the ability to handle complex finance problem and electronic problems without difficulties are becoming important for success in banking.  It is against this background that Oguntade that in the quality and motivation of staff, more than anywhere else competitive battle will be on or lost.

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