Cocktails With - Nadeen Matthews

Sunday, March 31, 2013

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Nadeen Matthews, Senior Assistant General Manager --Strategy, Marketing & Communications at the National Commercial Bank (NCB), runs a tight ship, from back-to-back meetings to planning corporate strategy for Jamaica's largest bank. She's taking a break from the boardroom to have lunchtime drinks and share her insights...

What are you drinking?

When unwinding after a long day at the office or on the weekend, a glass of Riesling usually does the trick, but today I'm headed back to the office for a few more meetings, so I am having an ice-cold glass of lemonade.

What type of day are you having?

A busy one... at NCB, I am responsible for Strategy, Marketing and Communications for the Group, as well as the NCB Foundation, so my days can be long. However, no two days are the same or without exciting new opportunities, so the time goes by too quickly. Can we add a 25th hour, please?

Socialite or homebody?

I love a good party (great music and dancing are a must), or a lyme with close friends and family; however, I definitely relish those homebody moments to truly recharge.

Who does your hair?

My hair is currently natural so I handle day-to-day styling, but for the occasional blow-dry and flat-iron or a more intricate natural style, I visit Nadine at Roxanne's Beauty Salon or Hyacinth's.

Who does your nails?

Monique at Spa Isabelle's.

LBD or jeans?

Little black anything. Black is definitely my foundation colour and then I accessorise around that with blazers, cardigans, SHOES!! etc.

Flats or stilettos?

I love heels. They're great for my posture and my calves, but I try to keep it practical with flats for the appropriate occasions.

Which perfume are you wearing?

Chance by Chanel.

Your handbag essentials?

BlackBerry, iPhone, passport, NCB Visa Gold, emergency cash.

What's on your iPad?

Hundreds of photos and my Kindle app with books, Bible and tons of work documents.

You're a Wharton MBA alumna, what has that experience taught you?

I have a better appreciation for the importance of networking as a result of my MBA experience.

You're also relatively new to living in Jamaica. Having been here for three years, what's living here been like so far?

Well, I'm not completely new. I was born in Jamaica but moved to New York at a young age. Moving back has been a great experience so far, and I'm looking forward to what the future has in store. Now that I am more settled, I have made a New Year's resolution to become more personally involved in areas where I have a passion, such as education and economic development, some of which I am able to do through the Jamaican chapter of my sorority Delta Sigma Theta -- but I hope to do much more.

How do you relax?

I never truly relax unless I am officially on vacation, off the grid, and can turn off the BlackBerry for parts of the day. I love to travel. I have visited 26 countries across five out of seven continents and hope to make it to six continents, God willing. I'm allergic to cold weather, which is why Antarctica is not on the list of target continents, but seriously, I love seeing for myself what I have read about in history books or magazines. I am also a huge foodie, so exploring each country's local cuisine is a must. If I need a quick fix, however, the ability to easily get away to the north coast has been one of the best perks of moving back to Jamaica, plus I laugh often and loudly and this tends to relax me.

What's your idea of a perfect date?

It can be as simple as having dinner by Joan's in Port Royal to something more involved and action-oriented like a weekend ski trip. The most important thing for me is really the conversation and the laughs shared.

Who is your business idol?

My bosses at JPMorgan and my current boss Patrick Hylton have been very influential in shaping my business philosophy and outlook. I continue to learn from them, and I try to learn from both successes and failures of various global leaders. At this particular point in my career I have become intrigued by the perspectives of Erin Callan -- former Lehman CFO, and Sheryl Sandberg -- COO of Facebook, about being women in the corporate world.

Who inspires you?

My Mommy and Daddy. They have worked hard and made tremendous sacrifices for their children. Even though I'm now an adult, their level of sacrifice and support for me is still very strong. I consider them my greatest blessing. All they have asked for us to do in return is to try our best and in the words of my mother, "Don't shame me." So with everything I ask those two questions: Am I doing my best and will this shame my parents?

What's your business credo?

Your attitude will determine your altitude.

No one rises to low expectations.

Where do you see yourself in the next 10 years?

I used to be very OCD about my future and had each year of my life planned out. Now I'm more focused on the principles that I would want to govern my life such as balance, strong relationships, love and respect, physical, spiritual and emotional wellness.




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