ING Direct USA's Kuhlmann on Managing in a Crisis

Kuhlmann bucked the trend by encouraging the bank's customers to save. His no-nonsense approach resonates with employees too
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There's a lot of talk about mavericks these days. But there are few in the financial services industry who rival Arkadi Kuhlmann, the CEO of ING Direct USA, the Wilmington (Del.)-based direct-banking arm of Dutch financial services giant ING Groep. Kuhlmann has never offered credit cards to his customers. He's stuck to plain-vanilla mortgages. And he's always encouraged ING Direct's customers to save, rather than to "live richly," as one mega-bank ad campaign touted.

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