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Jacob A. Dankert, BMO Harris Bank N.A.

IB’s Professional of the Week is the premier way to meet Dane County’s professionals. This week features Jacob A. Dankert, service manager and universal banker, BMO Harris Bank N.A.

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1. What are the most challenging and rewarding aspects of your job and why?

The most rewarding aspect of my role with BMO Harris Bank is the opportunity every day to work closely with our Madison team of banking partners. The professional and personal relationships my clients and myself have developed over the years are invaluable. Having such a large network of resources available to me as a banker in the Madison area really enables me to quickly find solutions for my clients that fit their needs.

The most challenging thing for me is the mix of advice out there on the Web. You can pretty much go out and find any piece of advice you like, but the challenge is locating the information that applies directly to your holistic financial picture. My opinion is that advice regarding financial decisions is best left up to a banker or advisor who you work with often, as they have the knowledge and solutions to get you to the financial lifestyle you are ultimately seeking.

2. Who do you look up to or admire in business and why?

I look up to so many business people in Madison it is hard to select just one. We have such a diverse mix of talents throughout our community it is tough to compare one over the next. I think this is in part what makes our business community in Madison such a strong and vibrant one.

3. What has been the high point of your career so far?

My high point is right now and what is yet to come. I have been with BMO Financial Group for almost six years now. I can honestly say that there hasn’t been a day when I have gone into the office and not learned or progressed as a financial professional. I am a younger businessperson and I really view this as an area of opportunity. For the past six years I feel as though I have been building a solid foundation for what I hope in the future to be an equally strong career path.

4. Thinking back on your career, what advice would you give your 21-year-old self?

This is a tough question because I am around this age now. This does not mean I would be without advice, however. Looking back though my career it would have been helpful to realize sooner that it is not about accomplishing an end goal but working to accomplish all of the little goals that face us each and every day.

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