There are multiple aspects to my role and the role of the team that I enjoy. The main highlight for me is the constant interaction with a wide range of consultants which keeps us very close to the UK institutional market, ascertaining the needs of institutions. We are always in discussions about the products and services we can provide them and also how we can develop new and innovative solutions to serve this market place.
Arguably one of the most challenging aspects of the role is one of the most enjoyable. As we are representing the firm and its products, we must have a good understanding of all the solutions that can be utilised by institutions. This requires us to have a good understanding of a range of asset classes and strategies. However, this is something I particularly enjoy as you are not limited to a specific product set and it enables you to have ongoing discussions with fund managers on their views and how they are constructing their portfolio. It gives you a great holistic understanding of the firm’s investment capabilities and the different outlooks on the markets.
When I left school, I knew my path lay in finding an alternative to university that would enable me to break into investment management, and specifically sales. I completed a short spell of work experience at a corporate finance house where it was my responsibility to conduct market and company analysis, working closely with the institutions we dealt with and those we were pitching to. I then completed an internship as a new business executive at a stockbroker which focused primarily on the alternative investment market. Here I was put through a rigorous sales training programme and it was my responsibility to win new business. These two experiences strengthened my passion for sales, but also taught me that my interest lay with institutional rather than retail investors. I was then offered the position at BMO to join a rotation programme in client management – including a role in the UK institutional sales team, but specifically consultant relations. This was an easy choice for me to make given the size of the firm and the opportunities that would therefore lie within.
I want to continue developing my career in a role that I enjoy and get satisfaction from. I think the key is striking the correct balance between work and a social life, but finding an environment that you are most effective in. I always look to develop the skills I have acquired and explore further qualifications. I want to continue driving my career forward and reach the best of my ability within investment management.
Investment20/20 has been the catalyst for my career to date and it can be a springboard for anyone who wishes to enter the industry. It’s an opportunity like no other and the scheme is continuing to build itself a very significant reputation within the industry. It is important to utilise such a unique opportunity.