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Careers in Finance


Photo of David Bauman
How would you describe your job?
As a branch manager, there are two separate facets to my job. The first is to help individuals and businesses take care of the whole spectrum of their current and future financial needs. The second is to manage a staff and run our branch as if it were my own business while following all banking and regulatory polices and procedures.

Describe how you got to where you are today. What was your smartest move? What would you do differently if you had the chance?
Hard work, never giving up, always adapting to change, and being open-minded. My smartest move over the years has been to read and learn whatever I could at any given opportunity, whether it was a training class or a magazine article about my industries or even current events.

What's the most rewarding part of your job?
Developing younger employees through training and advice, allowing them to grow their careers. Helping customers meet their needs, both now and in the future. Giving the right advice and superior customer service has helped develop long-term business relationships.

What advice do you have for young people considering a career in finance? What did you wish you knew?
As in any career, success is not always an easy road. Sharpen your math and computer skills. If you really enjoy the financial services industry, work smart, learn all you can, and, as a famous basketball coach said, "Never give up!"

What personal characteristics are required for someone to be successful in your job?
Be able to multitask, adapt to constant change, and enjoy what you do every day. Be the kind of person both your coworkers and customers want to work with.

What other job could you do with the skills you have gained in this field?
I could use my sales skills to work in another industry with other products rather than financial. As a manager, I could look to become a controller or financial person at another company.

What are the biggest challenges in your job?
Juggling all the different things I'm responsible for: staffing, training, sales, customer service, security, legal, and regulatory.

Are there many opportunities in your field? What should people do to get started?
There are all kinds of jobs in the growing field of financial services -- banking, insurance, investments; within the three, there are a lot of subcategories, some encompassing all three while others focus on just one. In some jobs you're completely dealing with customers. Some could be all analytical and research-based. If you're interested in financial services, do a lot of research. Talk to people who work in the industry in different job functions. Be flexible when you get started; as your skills develop, your interests may change along with changes in the industry. This industry can be very rewarding -- enjoy!

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