Chief Experience and Innovation Officer
Nelson Sandhu has been with Gulf & Fraser since 2007, holding the position of Chief Experience and Innovation Officer since 2018. He has 18 years of experience in the financial services industry as well as international work experience.
A specialist in consumer behaviour, Nelson holds a Master’s Degree in Behavioural Science from the London School of Economics, a Master’s in Business Administration from the Ivey School of Business and a Master's Diploma in Strategy and Innovation from the University of Oxford. In 2022 he completed the INSEAD International Directors Program at in Singapore.
Nelson has held positions within the Finance Mentorship Program at the Sauder School of Business, UBC where he mentors business students. He is a faculty member at the School of Business at Kwantlen Polytechnic University. He is on the advisory board of Mobetize, a fintech delivering modern white label digital banking applications.
Nelson moved through multiple ranks at Gulf & Fraser—starting as Branch Manager, moving to Regional Manager, to VP of Member Experience, and to his current role as Chief Experience and Innovation Officer. He oversees multiple functions at Gulf & Fraser including: commercial, retail and business banking; Gulf & Fraser’s Member Hub contact centre; broker services; mobile service delivery; member experience; and, digital transformation providing data analytics, service design, and user experience.
“The bottom line is important whether you are profit or non-profit. You need that bottom line to be in the business. But the key ingredient is people.
If you don’t have the right people, you can have all the right ideas and the best business model and it will still fail.”
Nelson is a keen student of how consumers and technologies interact resulting in disruption and change, and has studied the science of consumer behaviour. As part of his leadership role, Nelson participates in Gulf & Fraser “ThinkTanks” and other working groups where employees collaborate, share ideas and develop new member services.
“I enjoy seeing people grow and develop. It’s the people that make the business successful.
I love the culture, the change management and how we are willing to try new things. For example, our new Money Advisor model and opening our cashless branches.”
When asked what he feels is the most important quality of a credit union leader, Nelson says:
“Look beyond the credit union system. Be open and ready to learn. It’s not local, it’s global now. The way you think and learn should be borderless.”
Nelson speaks English, Cantonese, Punjabi and Hindi. In his off hours, he coaches soccer for Cloverdale Catholic School.