Some thoughts on financial industry & career development
By Daisy Liu, Full time MBA (2014/15) Candidate in CEU, New York City, 30 May, 2015
The second week is fascinating to me since both finance and consulting are my passionate areas. We met some interesting persons – experienced financial experts, freelancer consultants, business partners and so on. We visited three established financial companies. Especially, the two company visits to General Atlantic and Zephyr Management give us precious opportunities to know how Private Equity firms operate and to ask questions to executive management team. Though in the same industry, General Atlantic and Zephyr position themselves in different market segments to smartly avoid head to head competitions. And both of them are very successful by leveraging their relative competitive advantages, focusing on certain areas which they are good at, and having global vision as well as local knowledge. Also, we had cutting edge topics: the future of finance, big data, cloud computing, and smart cities.
Reflecting on what I experienced and what I have learned, something comes up.
Firstly, several guest speakers have emphasized the importance of local knowledge. What does this mean to me? As a Chinese, I’m lucky to have the local knowledge of this giant fast growing economy. Plus with my working and educational experiences in both China and Western countries, I would have a good chance to leverage what I have learned from developed countries into my country or even the Asian-Pacific region.
Secondly, we need to be an expert in certain areas to succeed. From E&Y’s HR director, I also know that people who have deep industry insights and expertizes have the better chance to be promoted to higher level positions, while junior or middle level positions have more general/broad exposures.
Thirdly, insights and information are essential for making decisions. Big data analytic technical can help us with more accurate information and deep insight. It’s beneficial to learn some skills in this area to success in future. One important take way is that we don’t have to be the best expert in this area; rather we can win when we relatively know more than others.
Finally, the choice matters. We can win even we are not the smartest. The solution is we find the highly potential growth industry, and get ways into that area and stay. After all, the rising tides take all boats. Find the rising tide and be the boat!