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This article is part of a series that explores a hiring trend out of the Great Resignation — the rise of the boomerang employee. These are employees who left a company but after further consideration, return. In the series, RBCers share their decisions to come back and the new skills and deeper perspective they bring with them.

For Judy Fong the pandemic was a wake-up call. After two years as a senior leader at another Canadian institution, she started to think back to when she was the happiest. “Everyone started reflecting on life and their careers during the pandemic. That reflection helped guide me,” she says.

With a 24-year career in financial services, there was a lot to look back on. Judy worked in personal banking for 17 years in a variety of roles, then came to RBC in 2014 as a branch manager.

Judy says the bank supported her as a woman and especially, as an Asian woman. “Many of my colleagues newer to banking would say they had rarely seen a female Asian branch manager and told me I inspired them. RBC gave me the opportunity to highlight diversity.”

During her almost five years at RBC, she became deeply involved with several employee resource groups for colleagues to connect and grow, including those for minorities and women in leadership. Judy also planned, organized and emceed a Lunar New Year celebration where many Ottawa-based employees thanked her for bringing together RBC’s Asian community. The event was the first of its kind for RBC and Judy says she got a lot of great feedback about how it helped create a greater sense of belonging. Through the Discover RBC program, Judy helped to inspire that same feeling by organizing and hosting a day-long welcome event for new RBCers.

She found a mentor in her Regional Vice President (RVP) Natacha Lemay-Reaume, who chatted with her often about goals and suggested she consider Commercial Financial Services. She was a good fit, Natacha said, and it was an opportunity to develop her career. At the time, Judy wasn’t open to the idea — little did she know that’s exactly where her path would lead. First came a new opportunity at another bank —a more senior position with complex responsibilities and a chance to refine her skills. It was too good to turn down, even though her RBC colleagues tried to convince her to stay.

A year and a half into her new position, COVID hit. Judy, like so many in the workforce, took stock of her current role and the resources she needed to serve clients in this new, virtual world. She immediately thought of how RBC provided the technology she needed on day one.

“RBC is always proactive, while so many companies were less prepared to help clients virtually at the beginning of the pandemic,” she said.

Judy also remembered the incredible partnerships at RBC. “Departments worked together to make sure the client experience was seamless. It was always about collaboration and the positive client experience. We never operated in silos.”

Judy stayed in touch with Natacha and thought back to that conversation where she suggested Commercial Financial Services as a career option. With that in mind, she reached out about a new position as a Relationship Manager, Commercial Financial Services and returned to RBC in June 2021. Coming back in this role, Judy took the next step in her career — just as Natacha had suggested — managing a portfolio of clients and strategizing on how to grow the business.

“Leaders who care really make a difference,” Judy says,
“I’ve learned to trust their guidance because they have a lot of great insight,
and they are a big part of what makes RBC a great organization.”

A word from our lawyers

This article offers general information only and is not intended as legal, financial or other professional advice. A professional advisor should be consulted regarding your specific situation. While information presented is believed to be factual and current, its accuracy is not guaranteed and it should not be regarded as a complete analysis of the subject matter discussed. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the author(s) as of the date of publication and are subject to change. No endorsement of any third parties or their advice, opinions, information, products or services is expressly given or implied by Royal Bank of Canada or its affiliates.