2024-2025 Young Bankers Division Chairman
Vice President
Peoples Bank of the South
Clinton

 

John Seiber is a vice president at Peoples Bank of the South, where he began his banking career in 2006. Hailing from Kenosha, Wis., he attended the University of Tennessee, earning a bachelor’s degree in Finance in 2005. John furthered his banking education at the TBA Southeastern School of Banking, graduating in 2013, and completed his studies at the LSU Graduate School of Banking in 2023. He lives in Andersonville, Tenn., with his wife, Jennifer, son, John III, and daughters, Juliet and Joy.

What inspired you to become involved with the Young Bankers Division, and what motivated you to pursue a leadership role within the organization?
I first learned about the Young Bankers Division in 2012 at the TBA’s Southeastern School of Banking on Vanderbilt’s campus. I met several board members and learned about the numerous opportunities to participate and get involved. Along with those board members, management at my bank encouraged me to attend the Leadership Convention the following year. While the speakers at the convention are always great, the relationships formed, and knowledge acquired from other colleagues is the biggest benefit in my opinion. After a couple years of attending YBD events, I was inspired to get involved as a director on the board.

In your opinion, what are some of the biggest challenges facing the banking industry today, and how can young bankers help to address these challenges?
I think the obvious issue, given the rapid rise in rates, is interest rate risk. This has led to shrinking margins for most banks. Economic uncertainty would be another concern. Asset quality and sensitivity are the best ways to combat these challenges. Upper management at our bank has taught me that conservative LTV ratios are extremely important after we’ve had such a sudden increase in property values. This approach, and striving for a long-term perspective in pricing loans and deposits, is crucial as we don’t know what the future holds regarding the economy.

What advice would you give to aspiring young bankers who are just starting out in their careers and looking to make a meaningful impact in the industry?
My advice would be to become a sponge and try to soak up as much knowledge as possible. Ask your superiors the reason behind strategic decisions, so you can understand how the bank operates. It can become easy to solely focus on our role without looking at the big picture and what is best for the bank. Ask to attend banking schools and industry events where you will be able to learn from colleagues who may be in similar situations with community banks like yours.

Similarly, what advice would you give senior banking leadership that are looking to engage and retain the rising stars within their organizations?
I think communication is important. Provide clarity on potential career paths within the organization. Motivation will most likely come from the opportunity for advancement, and they are more likely to stay if they see a clear trajectory for their career growth. Encouraging feedback will also help by providing opportunities for them to share ideas, ask questions, and feel included.

What is some life or career advice that you’ve gotten and still influences you today?
Some advice I was given before my first job at 14 was to never say “that’s not my job.” I think this still applies today, and definitely at smaller community banks where we need to be able to wear multiple hats. It is important to be willing and eager to step in and do whatever is asked of you. Staying humble always presents opportunities for growth and learning.

What goals do you have for the Young Bankers Division over your term as Chairman?
My primary goal will be to grow the Division by increasing participation at our events. The networking and learning opportunities have been valuable to me, and I realize that increasing the number of attendees will only make them more valuable for everyone and strengthen the industry as a whole.