Job Change: How Do You Know It's Time?

Matthew Speare of Regions on Why He Packed Up and Moved
Job Change: How Do You Know It's Time?
Matthew Speare
When is it time to make that big move to a new job? And what's the smartest strategy? Matthew Speare of Regions, a bank holding company, talks about how to read and respond to signs that it's time for a major career change.

For Speare, formerly senior vice president and CTO at M&T Bank in Buffalo, N.Y., the job change began when he realized he was ready for a new role, but he had to decide: Did he need just bigger responsibilities, or to be at a bigger institution?

"For me, it really was that professionally I wanted the opportunity to take a larger role and/or do the same type of role at a larger organization," says Speare, now executive vice president of governance and integration at Regions, based in Alabama.

The other consideration was family: Were his wife and adult children prepared for him to make such a significant move? Ultimately, they were, and Speare also had the comfort of knowing he wasn't trying to escape from or to a job.

"Both organizations [M&T and Regions] are very strong and also do the right things for their employees as well as their customers ... so it's not like running from a poorly managed organization to a different one. This was more about personal and professional growth."

In an interview about his recent career move, Speare discusses:

  • Why he made the big change;
  • The challenges of transition;
  • His new roles and responsibilities at a bigger bank.

Speare joined Regions, a top U.S. bank holding company headquartered in Birmingham, Ala., in 2013. Regions has $117 billion in assets and operates approximately 1,700 banking offices in 16 states. Speare is responsible for information security; check, ATM/debit, and credit card fraud operations; and systems integration for consumer, business and commercial banking groups. Previously, Speare was the chief technology officer for M&T Bank, an $82 billion financial institution based in Buffalo, N.Y.

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