Author Post
Topic how to get the foot into the industry?
@2011-11-02 21:06:52
Hello, everyone:

REALLY happy finding out this site yesterday and become addicted to it now. I wondered why I could not find it earlier???

Feel so close to have you fellow guys working toward that threee magic letters. I sat in this year's level-1 CFA exam, waiting for the result now. even though feel ok, but still not sure until the late July. I am here to seek for advice of how to break into finance field without previous background. worse than that, I am from a communist country, guess where? you bet, P.R. China.I am going to get my MBA from Santa Clara Univ. the end of this year. previously I got a M.D. from Beijing, and worked in Alcatel China Ltd for 3 years(in marketing). I did my internship at a local insurance firm, mainly project management and marketing. I came to the States 4 years ago, legal to work here and I do speak very fluently english that quite a few of my American fellows even thought I was born here.So that's my basic profile, talking to one of my classmates who is on the buy side of the investment industry, found out finance is highly competitive field to break into since it is mainly American main stream male dominated, besides the market really sucks.I don't have any preference on fixed income, stocks, or ibanking at this stage. only thing I see the niche is the mutual funds, which are something new in China, and I probably see more futures if going back to develop Chinese finance market.

But first thing first, how could I get my foot into the door? any advice? suggestions? highly appreciated!!!! (meanwhile, I am going to take level-2 once upon passing level-1; but again, you need to have the experience, experience, experience, experience, how can I compete with those laid off guys with 5+ years experience???)

Thanks a ton for any inputs!!!!!:)Cindy
@2011-12-08 12:11:35
Maybe you should find some small company for starting.

some small brokerage will don't care your exp.
@2012-02-15 19:51:02
Maybe you should consider going back to China. China is a huge market that many leading financial services firms are targeting. Your education in the States plus your commitment in the CFA program may help..
@2012-03-13 10:33:53
What's the point of 'C... Country'? The financial systems don't vary too much among countries, except for some specific accounting principles and tax rules. My acedemic knowledge and banking experience in China helped me a lot in preparing L1.

As far as the experience issue is concerned, I've been away from banking fields for years and the same as you, fighting to make a step back into the industry. One of my thoughts is that junior or intermediate level in small firms would be definitely necessary for me, a fresh MBA graduate holding some level of CFA. Aiming too low, huh? It won't take long I guess -- several months to max 2 years, as long as I take it as my career for life. Cheers.
@2012-05-19 15:54:47
You should probably start with an asset management company, no matter how large or small the firm is. The obvious choice is of course either a mutual fund company or a pension fund management company. Another not-so-obvious choice is working in the investment department of an insurance company, which manages its invested assets to support its liabilities. I am an actuary (fellow of society of actuaires) working for a large insurance company and the nature of my work is mainly on the liability side (as opposed to the asset side of the balance sheet). I intend to get more experience on the asset and investment side and that's why I also will take the Lv 1 exam this year.
@2012-06-04 06:51:00
I would say experience is very important, especially for analytical roles. i didn't read the whole bunch you wrote there, but if you earn CFA designation, you want to be in asset management. If you had research background, you'd probably stay in research. if you were trading (decision making) you might rise as a portfolio mger one day. Another area, due diligence analyst in fund allocation (all sorts of institutions have this - pension, insurance, FOF). I think it should be what you want to do, vs. what type of firm you want to be in that determines where you start. sometimes you just have to give up some of the working experience and start entry level, align yourself with the right career path.
@2018-10-20 18:42:53
One word: Networking. After getting my MBA in finance (with no previous finance experience), I spent 6 months emailing resumes, posting to job boards, etc. Roughly 1% turned into phone interviews. I went and tapped my personal network from school, and I literally started a new job the next morning.