In this interview, our guest is Naz Vahid - Head of Citi Global Wealth at Work.
Naz Vahid leads her life with gratitude. She escaped Iran as a young girl and it shaped who she became. She adapted to her new life in America by putting effort into everything and never taking anything for granted. Taking on responsibilities at an early age taught her important life skills –all of which has served her professionally.
Throughout her career, Naz has taken on a variety of roles and increasingly bigger responsibilities by always learning and growing. Naz shares how listening to feedback, avoiding complacency, and building great relationships helped her achieve her ambitions. She believes we elevate others by elevating ourselves.
When it comes to social issues in the workplace, Naz thinks it’s important that we get uncomfortable and show our authenticity. She recognizes it is harder for women and minorities to navigate their careers and is determined to make it easier for the younger generations.
[02:36] One thing Naz’s journey has taught her
[04:09] Her immigrant journey
[07:42] Being an outsider and forming her own identity
[09:54] How Naz got into her industry
[14:05] What Naz would tell her younger self about banking
[16:53] Life in Iran today
[19:43] Protecting women’s rights
[21:44] Taking a stand on social issues
[24:01] Diversity, equity, and inclusion
[27:26] How Naz authentically stood out
[33:42] Overcoming self doubt
[39:41] Coping with setbacks
[43:46] The key to building powerful and lasting relationships
[49:54] Lightning round questions
“I have learned you can't take comfort or what you have for granted.” – Mehrnaz (Naz) Vahid
“You just have to make the voice in your head that says, "I'm good enough," louder.” – Mehrnaz (Naz) Vahid
"Every time you elevate yourself, you elevate someone behind you as well." - Mehrnaz (Naz) Vahid
What book has greatly influenced you?
“Kite Runner” by Khaled Hosseini
What is your favorite inspiring quote or saying?
"People forget what you said. People forget what you did. People will never forget how you made them feel." - Maya Angelou
What is one word or moniker you would use to describe yourself?
What is one change you've implemented that made your life better?
Sit on the email overnight when you are angry.
What power song would you want playing as you walk out onto a stage?
"Fight Song" by Rachel Platten
Naz Vahid is a Managing Director and Head of Citi Global Wealth at Work. In this role, Naz and her team provide tailored financial solutions to working professionals within the legal, asset management and professional services industries.
Prior to this, Naz served as the Head of the Law Firm Group for Citi Private Bank. In this role she was responsible for the 14 offices in the United States and UK that serve Law Firms, their Partners and Associates. The group has around 200 professionals that provide a range of financial services to more than 40,000 attorneys across approximately 650 law firms. Naz also served as the Head of the Citi Private Bank Diversity Program, working with the committee and ICG Diversity to increase awareness across many areas and was responsible for setting up Citi Private Bank’s Mentorship Program. Prior to leading the Law Firm Group, she was the Global Market Manager for the East Coast and London responsible for six Law Firm Group offices.
Before this, she was a Senior Private Banker for more than 15 years, handling some of the largest client relationships in the Private Bank. Naz is formally credit trained, and prior to her role as a Private Banker, worked as a Private Bank Credit Officer and also as an analyst. Naz holds a graduate degree in International Relations and Finance from Columbia University School of International Affairs and undergraduate degrees in Economics and Sociology from Hobart and Williams Smith Colleges.
Outside of her responsibilities at Citi, she is the member of board of Hobart & William Smith Colleges as well as the Tahirih Justice Center. She also sponsors scholarships both at Lynbrook High School and Hobart and William Smith Colleges for first generation immigrant students pursuing higher education in the United States. In her free time, Naz enjoys reading and painting.
Naz has two daughters and lives in Long Island, New York with her husband.