April 17, 2014

?Florida CEO Trends

At SunTrust, Fiscal Trumps Physical

Ginger Broslat | 1/1/2009

Daniel Mahurin
Daniel (Dan) Mahurin
Chairman, President and CEO
SunTrust Bank, Tampa Bay

[Photo: Mark Wemple]
Daniel Mahurin and his team at SunTrust believe in understanding customers’ needs, and with help from Mullen Advertising, they’ve garnered some valuable information. In 2007, Mullen surveyed adults in Florida and seven other Atlantic seaboard states asking them to rank a list of concerns in order of personal importance.

The goal was to learn what consumers were worried about — what they needed, wanted and expected. The concerns being rated were in two categories: “physical” (health and medical) and “fiscal” (finances, investments and budgeting). Physical finished No. 1 in that survey with fiscal far behind, at No. 9.

A year later, in another random survey of the same demographic, physical and fiscal concerns tied at No. 1.

“This economy is in a painful correction,” says Mahurin. “It’s challenging and will be for some time to come. The silver lining: People are learning they need to balance their personal budgets and make wise investments.”

Like other executives in Florida, Mahurin watches the housing market. “The correction in that market was needed to make Florida more competitive for jobs. It was too expensive to live here ... not good for recruiting companies.” He feels a more realistic market will also help attract more telecommuters — people who can choose where they live based on desired lifestyle, rather than proximity to a workplace.

Mahurin sees some positive signs ahead. “We are writing mortgages, sales are coming back and the foreclosure inventory is beginning to be absorbed.” He believes consumers have learned it’s just as important to pay attention to their “fiscal health” as their physical health.

Tags: Banking & Finance

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