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Sean Puckett

Banking VP sees success by building relationships

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Sean Puckett came into banking by accident — but it’s no accident that he’s stayed for more than 12 years.

Puckett was recruited from an outside sales job to a position with Union Bank and was a vice president by the time he was 29.

“It stuck,” Puckett said. “It’s a people job about relationships. That’s what’s rewarding about this position — the deep-seeded relationships. They need a trusted person, and that’s what keeps me going every day.”

When he was 17 years old, Puckett’s grandfather told him, “Sean, when you get to be my age, the only thing that will matter is the relationships you built along the way.”

“It’s the conversations that happen while you’re not in the room that make you successful,” Puckett said.

Puckett works with Strategic Trusted Advisors Roundtable (STAR), a professional adviser group.

He became known through the group, which led the president of Regents Bank to reach out to him to join his team.

“The key to good relationships is actively listening and thinking about what you can do to help them,” Puckett said. “If you just give, it always circles back.”

After six years at Union Bank, he was recruited to work for California Bank & Trust, where he experienced the recession in his first year.

“If bankers haven’t worked through a recession or downturn, when clients are going out of business, they haven’t learned the craft yet,” Puckett said.

Puckett joined Regents Bank as first vice president in November of last year.

He said working with Regents is a “cultural fit” for him, where there are consultative bankers instead of sales people, and they build partnerships with the clients.

“It all comes back to clients and what they need. I’m so passionate about that, and the president here is so passionate about that,” Puckett said. “Elevating awareness that’s the way you should be is my contribution to the business community.”

Puckett originally planned on studying sociology at the University of San Diego, with plans to earn his PhD and work as a college professor.

“I found a way in my job to get a release on that. So many of my meetings are based on education,” Puckett said. “My expertise is different than what I thought — and that information is valuable to business owners. I accidentally found a way that I can be a teacher every day.”

Puckett said he hopes to be a “prominent San Diegan who has given back to the professional community in multiple ways.”

He said he hopes to be the president of a bank one day. The appeal to Puckett is: “being able to create culture; being able to help the right people who need help because of the authority and status you have.”

“I want to keep doing the right things for the right reasons," he said. "I’m 100 percent confident that everything I want will gravitate to me (if I do that).”

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