Graduate Scheme success! with Andrew Fisher

At our first meeting, we were originally going to discuss career opportunities; however since arranging this I have been successful at gaining a graduate scheme with Credit Suisse, so we discussed the roles available within the rotational programme. Then we discussed some other issues and questions that I had prepared.

Andrew’s Background

A brief history about Andrew started off in FMCG at Unilever and had exposure to a variety of roles within the company. It was a very structured company with career paths mapped out so he quit to choose his own career path. He went into consulting, worked in financial services consulting for Standard Chartered and then joined them as in house consulting. Moved into wealth management which was fast paced and more complex. Stated that Maths was important in finance and the principles. There are some people in the industry who don’t agree with the methods Andrew has used to transform the financial services sector but that doesn’t stop him from trying to achieve his goal.

Key message: Don’t be afraid to ask for help or clarification because it becomes a lot harder to speak up if you play along not understanding.

Biggest Problems Andrew has faced in his career

Being told to research a project and regardless of the outcome, recommend the project doesn’t go ahead to ensure the directors retire on a large salary which was a final pension salary. The conflicts of interest and lack of integrity prompted him to quit.

Key message: There will always be points of reflection where you are not sure what to do, but in this case, stick to your guns and what you know is right.

How to develop my confidence

Ask for clarification on feedback of confidence issues. Learn from experience. Liaise with others who have lack of confidence and see if you are doing any of those traits. Develop presentation skills through giving presentations to family and friends. Practice in difficult situations where it doesn’t matter.

Key message: Be wary that some managers act out their own concerns through you and therefore may not be giving you the best advice.

Balancing Priorities

Triage – 1.Definietly going to die no matter what you do

2. Quick to die unless you do something quickly

3. Uncomfortable but not urgent

Can assess life like this and the tasks that are needed to undertake, always think what happens if I don’t? Think about what can be done right now, don’t put things off because of a chain of work, make a start right now.

Key message: Always assess IQ and EQ (emotional intelligence) and motivation behind work.

Dealing with difficult colleagues

Look to their motivation and from their point of view. Turn the tables onto them but don’t take on their agenda. Ask for clarification.

Key message: Don’t reinforce their stereotype of you by not approaching them.

Dissertation

Andrew’s: Corporate Governance in multi-national companies, whether they take on a decentralised or centralised approach to management styles.

Mine: Is money taking the kick out of football?

Advice: Look at the purpose of football, the emotions and compare with other entertainment industries. Role models or society? Values of teamwork, equality and social responsibility due to downfall of society or footballers?

I found this meeting really useful as I got lots of guidance on the roles I can work in within Credit Suisse and also how to balance priorities. For the next meeting we have agreed to have my first draft of my dissertation and Andrew has agreed that I can contact him in the meanwhile for further advice.

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