Yasmin Huebinger’s career journey called for boldness
September 12, 2023 4 min read
Editor's note: This article was originally published in the Houston Business Journal.
As the child of a certified public accountant and a banker, Yasmin Huebinger grew up hearing plenty of stories about how her parents helped their clients reach transformative financial goals.
When picking a major in 2000 at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Huebinger chose finance so she could pursue a career in banking and promote professional opportunities in the industry for women.
Today, she is a middle-market banking senior vice president within Capital One’s corporate banking group and is the Houston market president, a role that has her focused on advancing socio-economic mobility by closing gaps in equity and opportunity, among other initiatives. She joined the bank as a credit analyst and underwriter in 2006 supporting the energy, health care and commercial and industrial business segments.
As she’s advanced through positions of increasing responsibility, Huebinger has provided Houston businesses with strategic financial advice and solutions. She has a passion for diversity, inclusion and belonging (DIB) and recruiting the best and brightest industry professionals to help the bank meet its growth objectives in the market.
Huebinger’s career journey
Huebinger became Houston market president in 2022, and she gave the role serious thought and consideration as she prepared to serve both clients and drive impact across this community. While preparing to take this on, Huebinger gave birth to two children in two years, and ultimately had to decide how to balance the responsibilities of her personal and professional roles.
“I have two babies at home who take so much of my energy. You question, ‘Can I really do this?’” she said. “I leaned on close friends, mentors and colleagues at the bank who were so supportive. There are many working moms at the bank, and it’s gotten easier with hybrid work flexibility. While many working moms still struggle with work-life balance, I’m happy I took the leap and embraced this leadership opportunity.”
As she’s built her career at the bank, she’s mentored other associates to help them advance, too. Her top piece of advice: “Be bold and ask for what you want.”
“Our job as leaders is to help the folks we’re mentoring reach their goals,” she said. “We can only help them if we know what their goals are. I struggled with that early on in my career. It wasn’t in my nature (to verbalize those goals), and you don’t always feel comfortable asking for what you want. As I progressed, I tried to impart to others the importance of being bold by articulating exactly what you need to continue to develop professionally.”
DIB is at the core of Capital One’s culture. The bank is deeply committed to growing the diversity of its talent and building a culture of belonging where everyone can thrive. The bank strives to leverage its expertise and resources to build stronger, more inclusive teams and communities.
For its efforts, Capital One has been honored by several organizations and publications, including being included in “Best Places to Work” lists from Fortune, Glassdoor and LinkedIn several years running.
The bank’s “culture of belonging” also includes various business resource groups that are employee-led forums for connection, cultural celebration, community service and professional development.
Huebinger has taken a personal interest in these DIB efforts at the bank and in her community. She was named a “Power 50 Woman” in Houston by the National Diversity Council in 2019 and 2020. She also serves as a board member on Women’s Resource of Greater Houston to promote opportunities for women and served as its board chair in 2020. She is an active member of the Secured Finance Network, which is part of the Greater Houston Partnership’s Executive Women’s Partnership.
“Our focus at the bank is to empower our associates by fostering an inclusive and collaborative environment that allows different ideas and opinions to be shared openly,” Huebinger said. “We then hold everybody accountable to the core principles we’ve established to build inclusive teams and communities by getting and reviewing feedback regularly with senior leadership as part of our environmental, social and governance report.”
In a tight labor market, DIB continues to be key in talent attraction, she said. Since the bank’s founding, it has focused on attracting, developing and empowering top talent. Capital One continues to increase diverse representation through its recruiting efforts, including expanding the candidate pipeline to maximize exposure to underrepresented groups.
“Having a strong DIB culture is important in this hugely competitive market for talent,” Huebinger said. “At Capital One, our mission is to change banking for good by bringing humanity, ingenuity and simplicity to banking. We live and breathe that through the associates we recruit who have a certain value set that aligns with that mission.”
Helping businesses grow
Huebinger leads a team of bankers focused on originating and maintaining new banking relationships and leading strategic growth objectives in the market. As the market president, she focuses on strengthening Capital One’s presence and influence across the Houston region.
The bank has vast industry expertise, including in commercial and industrial sectors; commercial real estate; food, beverage and agriculture; health care; and technology media and telecom. Commercial banking solutions include commercial lending, capital markets, treasury management, corporate card, trade credit and depository services.
Capital One works with businesses of all sizes. One recent Houston client is a multi-generational, family-owned distributorship business. The bank helped it grow its credit facility from one lender to a syndicated facility involving five banks. That allowed the business to acquire some competitors and expand its footprint.
“Our approach to this client was one that we frequently use — we listen to what the leadership team would like to accomplish and then work in consultation with them to identify a capital structure and other financial solutions to execute that growth plan,” Huebinger said. “This is not a one-size-fits-all business. We believe each company has unique attributes and we work with them to maintain that all the while helping them to grow.”
Learn more about solutions Capital One offers to help Houston businesses execute their growth plans at capitalone.com.