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Inside INB

Ben Diggles

If you happen to find yourself on the phone seeking help with mobile banking or online banking, or merchant services — or pretty much anything related to the technologies at INB — listen carefully for the voice on the other end.

“Data processing, this is Ben, how can I help?”

Did you hear that? British accent, right? But more specific than that … kinda like a Beatle?

Almost. The Beatles were from Liverpool and Ben Diggles — Data Processing Specialist at INB — hails from St. Helens. The two are only 13 miles away from each other, but that’s far enough, in the dense culture and long history of the United Kingdom, to matter.

For the average Inland Northwesterner, though, the reaction is something like, “I have a lot of people pause,” Diggles says, “they say, ‘sorry, where are you based?’”

When he tells them he’s in Downtown Spokane, “the response is just … confusion.”

Ben Diggles was born in St. Helens and spent much of his life before 2014 in Northwestern England. He studied business and accountancy in college and found, in a few banking courses, a sort of practical application for a lot of the theoretical stuff in his course work. The deeper he went into banking, the more interesting things got, “Debits became loans became economics became mergers and acquisitions.”

He ended up at Lloyd’s after college, one of Britain’s Big 4 banks and an institution with over 16 million customers. Early on, he worked every job from teller to relationship manager. After the economic downturn in 2009, Lloyd’s — like most other banks — became more focused on risk, and Diggle’s career took a similar turn, “I’ve done compliance, then customer complaints, risk and compliance. Internal auditing at points. Training. Risk assessment.”

Diggle’s life took another turn in 2009 as well. While on vacation at the Penny Arcade Expo (PAX) in Seattle, he walked into a completely packed breakfast place. The only seat was at a table occupied by a woman named Taylor. The next morning Ben and Taylor got breakfast again, “then again and then dinner.”

Taylor is a native Spokanite and in 2010, Ben came and visited, meeting her entire family during the course of a single dinner. After spending a year jumping through two sets of hoops — applying for a green card and planning a wedding — Diggles moved to Spokane in 2014.

The pace here, and especially the business climate, suits him just fine. At Lloyds, he says, “You’d come in early. Leave late. Maybe you take a lunch.” He’s enjoying the more relaxed pace of Spokane. “It’s nice, just to be comfortable with your work,” he says, “and finding that work-life balance.”