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Six Figure: I Went From ₦80k/Month To ₦900k/Month After Embracing Banking

Six Figure is a biweekly PiggyVest series that focuses on how real Nigerians achieved dramatic income growth, making them millionaires.

For this week’s episode of Six Figure, we spoke to an E-settlement officer of a commercial bank who makes ₦900k monthly. He talks about banking being his last resort after school and shares some lessons he has learned along the way.

What was your first actual job?

I was a teller in one of the top commercial banks in Nigeria. I also doubled as a funds transfer officer.

Was this always the dream? 

Heck no! But after school, I couldn’t find a job in my field of study, so I did what anybody in my position would: I seized the first job opportunity that came my way.

That’s understandable. What did you study?


So when did you enter the workforce?


What was it like being a teller?

It wasn’t all bad at first. My job entailed receiving cash from customers for depositing, paying cash to customers for withdrawals and receiving cheques from customers for payment or deposit — standard bank teller stuff. 

Then, the job of an FT officer is to transfer funds within and outside the bank, transmit other bank cheques and process offshore transfers. 

How much did you earn?

I made ₦75k each month. And I was entitled to only my basic salary — no more, no less.

That’s ridiculous. How long were you with them?

Three years and eight months. My salary only increased by ₦30k in all that time. I thought that once I reached the three-year mark, I would be made a permanent staff, as was the protocol. But office politics came into play. Once I realised that I might wait forever to be confirmed, I had to find a way out.  

You did your best.

I really did. It just became too much to take at some point.

Glad you found your way out. Where did you go from there? 

I moved to another commercial bank in 2019. We didn’t have as many walk-in customers at the time, but we handled many business accounts. We were thriving.

What was your job description? 

I started as an Executive Trainee. And I was a teller for four months before being promoted to FT. 

How much were you paid? 

My starting salary was ₦171k monthly, plus benefits. But so much had happened in that time. I’ve been promoted four times with multiple salary increases. 

Wow, congratulations! 

Thank you! 

What’s your job role now?

I’m an E-Settlement Officer. My responsibility is to reconcile the bank’s business position in terms of inflow and outflow, ensuring it is balanced. I’ve been in this position for one year and one month. 

How much do you earn now?

Just a little over ₦900k.

Impressive growth! What steps did you take to get to where you are now?

I gave in to the process. I accepted that this was my career path, and all that was left for me to do was water my grass. So, I took several courses. I put my head down to learn the ropes and even got my MBA.

Congratulations! Now that you earn much more, do you manage your money well?

I’m partly the breadwinner of my family, so a good chunk of my earnings go back home. Between that and school and other bills, I’ve been unable to save as much as I’d like. 

But all of that was a long phase that has ended; my family is in a better place financially, and school has ended, so I’m recouping nicely. Overall, my bills are paid, and I’m debt free. I’ll give myself a 6/10.

That’s a decent score. Do you have any career advice for aspiring bankers?

Many people I know in banking stumbled upon it — it wasn’t their first choice. So my first advice would be to make the decision now: to stay or to pivot. Once you decide to stay, then, like every other career, find out what you need to climb up the ladder and do it. 

Stay consistent and be charismatic because sometimes being charming is a necessary skill to interact with customers and get good recommendations. Work hard, but be patient with the process.

Key Takeaways

  1. Find the courage to walk away from an exploitative situation: Some jobs will wring you dry while paying peanuts in return. It is understandable that jobs are tough to find, and you’ll rather work a job you don’t like than not work at all. But if you’re in this situation, please, start working on your exit plan. 
  2. Make lemonades when life gives you lemons: Things may not always work out for you as planned, but you can still make the best out of any situation. 
  3. Build your skill: Keep working on yourself. Today’s in-demand skill might become tomorrow’s outdated skill. 

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