Vice Chairman, Investment Banking, Barclays

After the U.K. vote in June to leave the European Union, Barbara Byrne had one message for her employees at Barclays: Pay close attention to how it plays out.

She advised them to step away from the frenzy and think about the future impact of Brexit on everything from capital markets to the U.S. presidential campaign.

"From where I sit, it's just another interesting moment," she said.

Byrne, whose four decades of industry experience has given her a sense of perspective, said she does not consider Brexit to be a crisis.

She said the "real crisis" in the world is the long stretch of sluggish economic growth that's helping fuel the rise of populist frustrations.

Byrne got her start in banking at Lehman Brothers in the 1980s. She worked there until its collapse during the financial crisis and subsequent acquisition by Barclays.

Now she has arrived at her own personal interesting moment and has started to think about the next steps in her career. One thing she knows is that she wants to continue to make a difference — similar to the experience she had this year as a producer on the movie "Equity."

How that inclination will play out she isn't sure, but she has given some thought to the idea of possibly running for public office someday.

"I love having an impact in a pretty real way," she said.

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