C-Suite Awards: Karen Larrimer, PNC – Pittsburgh Business Times – The Business Journals

Karen Larrimer became the first chief customer officer at PNC Financial Services Group Inc. in 2014, a time when Pittsburgh’s biggest bank was among a handful pioneering the position. She has built a 27-year career at PNC (NYSE: PNC), during which she was frequently honored on American Banker’s ranking of the Most Powerful Women in Banking. She stepped down as head of retail banking in mid-2022 after six years in the post and plans to retire at year-end from her remaining roles of CCO and EVP. As head of retail, Larrimer led PNC’s digital expansion, the creation of solution centers in its expansion markets and several rebranding efforts through acquisitions. As CCO, she established the Office of the Customer, led several efforts designed to improve customer experience and rolled out an analytical measurement tool to gauge employee and customer satisfaction.
Early on in my banking career, I had a goal of running a big business. Throughout my career, I chose to constantly push myself out of my comfort zone and into new roles. As a result, I had a wide variety of experiences that helped me to gain knowledge of many aspects of the banking business. I believe that helped to accelerate my career toward the big opportunities I had in banking.
To be wildly successful as a top-tier national bank serving our customers coast-to-coast, with outsized customer growth as compared to our competitors.
Being in banking as long as I have, I have seen Americans face many challenges as well as our industry specifically. I believe the biggest change has occurred over the past couple of years as the country navigated Covid-19. It dramatically challenged all of us to figure out new roadmaps of doing business, and it changed our workplace and workforce in ways that I never imagined.
At PNC, we are a values-based company that always works to do the right thing. To me, that is why I love working there. My thoughts on the three features of culture that are essential would be: Values at the core of the company, being laser focused on the customer and investing in employees.
It is hard to decouple many of the challenges we have today locally, nationally and internationally. But I would say that given banking’s role in helping our customers achieve financial wellness, of high concern is the current economic environment. The impact on consumers as inflation rises and the cost of basic needs increases and negatively impacts their financial health has many consequences to families.
It has been incredibly exciting and rewarding to be part of PNC over the past few years as we have become a national bank that serves customers across the country. Our ability to successfully embed our great company culture into new geographies as we gained new coworkers through our expansion efforts and through acquisition has been very fulfilling to me.
Title: Executive vice president, chief customer officer, PNC Financial Services Group Inc.
Family: Husband Jim Larrimer; children Ryan, Allison, Derek and Hayley; daughter-in-law Roxanne; grandson Landon
Education: B.S., Point Park University
First job: Treasury management at Mellon Bank
Hobbies: Spending time with family, golf, boating
Community involvement: Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, board president; United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania, executive committee, past board chair; Robert Morris University, trustee; Goodwill of Southwestern Pennsylvania, emeritus; Duquesne Club, past president
Professional commitments: Modern Executive Solutions, advisory board member; Highmark Inc., board of directors
Way to relax: At lake house on Deep Creek Lake
Book: Anything by James Patterson
Local restaurant: Eleven
Inspirational quote: “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” — Eleanor Roosevelt
Vacation destination: Turks and Caicos
The 2022 C-Suite Awards will honor the C-suite executives who have demonstrated vital leadership and business savvy to guide their companies to success. Join us on November 10 at the Westin Pittsburgh as we honor the winners of this year’s program.
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