Bank of China


As China’s most globalised and integrated bank, Bank of China has a well-established global service network with institutions set up across the Chinese mainland as well as in 57 countries and regions.

Bank of China has upheld the spirit of “pursuing excellence” throughout its history of over a century. With integrity as its backbone, reform and innovation as its path forward and “people first” as its guiding principle, the Bank has built up an excellent brand image that is widely recognised within the industry and by its customers.

The Challenge

The Bank of China’s London branch is very much where ‘East meets West’. With staff from around the globe coming together in the London branch this led to some unique challenges for the leaders in the business. Focused on ensuring that leaders and teams were highly engaged and performing the key barriers to this included language and cultural barriers, a dichotomy between bold and prudent investment and a long-standing culture where personal development was qualification led rather than personal growth led. In 2018 the HR and Learning and Development team were tasked with finding a solution to these challenges.

The Approach

Agar was approached by the Bank to support them in starting to address some of these challenges. We quickly decided on Insights Discovery as the ‘shared language’ of choice, a simple but powerful personal development tool that works equally well in individual and team contexts. Delivering discrete and multi-team workshops and individual 1-2-1 coaching debriefs we delivered the tool to a number of key leaders and teams across the Bank.

We continued to do this work throughout the pandemic, utilising video technology to deliver the tool in a safe and convenient way for staff, many of whom were displaced around the world and working in teams that were geographically spread. Since 2018 this shared language of Insights’ colours has emerged in the Bank and the tool has been used as a foundation for learning and for greater mutual understanding.

More recently we have handed over the baton of Insights delivery to the Learning and Development Team who have worked with Agar to accredit members of their staff to continue to deliver the Insights tools across the London Branch and beyond.

The Impact

  • A shared language of colour.
  • Insights Client Practitioners implemented.
  • Greater self-awareness and understanding of others.
  • Insights colours used to reinforce company values.
  • Insights used consistently as a tool for staff development from induction, personal development objectives and greater understanding of team effectiveness.
  • High performing teams.

What They Say

“Through the provision of support for the Insights Discovery tool for our employees, Agar are one of our trusted training providers who have always provided an excellent service to us.”

Phil Richards, Head of Learning & Development, Bank of China UK Limited and Bank of China London Branch


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