Seasoned Advice – Ashley Wang
As the holiday season looms upon us, I thought I’d gather some intel from fellow graduates across the firm, old and new, to share some thoughts in a short Q & A. It’s all very well reading the campus promotional material but what I find the most insightful, even now whilst working in my role, is hearing about others’ experiences and applying them to your own. Here are the responses from fellow grads:
1: What has been the most valuable piece of advice you have been given by someone at MUFG?
– You don’t need to stay late every night. Sometimes the job requires you to work long hours, but there’s no need to hang around the office just because other people are there.
– To make a concerted effort with other members of the business. Get to know them, find out what they do, ask them for advice. It is so valuable having experienced people around you who you can ask questions.
– “Your only limitation is you”.
2: What has been the most shocking thing you have discovered about working here?
– Quite how lovely everyone is! It is fantastic how friendly the people are. You can introduce yourself to anyone and they will always find time to sit down with you.
3: What is your hiring team, and which other team/people have you established the closest network with?
– Settlements in Operations. Members of this team are in my closest network, although there are other people across the department/bank that I maintain close ties with.
– Capital Markets. I have maintained close ties with my graduate class, and have increased my network to individuals I have met socially, through rotations and the mentor programme, as well as those I work with on business matters across all regions.
– I am in a fortunate position where I need to have close networks from the Front and Back Office, across the regions.
4: What one piece of advice were you given (by anyone) during the application and interviewing process that was least true?
– That you must have extensive industry knowledge and background. I have found this is least true; being personable, communicative as well as being a great team player is also hugely important, particularly if you are aiming to be in a client facing role. Notwithstanding, the desire to learn and develop your knowledge of the business is the crucial aspect.
– “You’ll look stupid if you don’t understand all the numbers in the FT” etc. The interviewers will be looking for potential rather than specific knowledge, especially if you don’t have a finance background. What you do know is far more important than what you don’t know.
– “First impression counts for everything”. Although a first impression is important, it is the impression you give throughout the process from start to end which carries the most weight.
5: Where do you see yourself in 2 years?
– In 2 years I hope to have built my departmental knowledge a great deal, and therefore confidence. I hope to pass all my necessary examinations, as well as have a strong footing in the team in which I have been assigned. I do have an interest in EM debt issuance as well as project bonds.
– Hopefully still in Front Office Solutions, but with a much higher profile amongst the traders, and the required knowledge to do my job without relying on my colleagues.
– In a more senior position with the ability to confidently make important judgement calls. I also very much welcome the opportunity to work abroad!