Financial careers are highly sought after because they can offer high payouts, and are exciting, high-pressure, nerve-wracking and demanding at the same time. That’s why an investment banker needs a very specific set of skills both tangible and intangible.
The banking sector job roles are customer oriented, and the most popular job role is that of the investment banker. An Investment banker is basically a broker as in the case of acquisitions and mergers, or between market and the firm like in IPO offerings, or within the firm itself like in maintaining the company’s finances.
Besides the basic qualifications, the most crucial intangible skills for an investment banker are:
Proven intellect: Qualifications and an inherent liking for analytics, finances, economics, and mathematics help in job requirements and performance. Certifications from CFA- Chartered Financial Analyst and investment banking courses will in large measure help develop and whet the curiosity of an investment banker in finding solutions. A good understanding of physics, engineering, economics, computer skills, and many others will help your development.
Hardcore discipline: This trait is essential as an insider will know that it takes immense discipline to stay focused, work long hours and still be customer facing. Honesty, integrity and a lot of hard work go with the fantastic payouts you can expect in return. Discipline is quality that is largely inculcated through sports, doing additional studies like law, physical training, solving puzzles, and such activities. Remember that from your entry as an analyst to becoming the topmost director all roles work in an environment akin to a food processor and cooker. Develop those venting systems and stay focused on your daily goals.
Entrepreneurial skills: Innovation, creativity, excellent interpersonal skills are survival skills for this role. The way to approach tasks, find the right solutions and more importantly present them is a skill that is invaluable. Looking at solutions from all angles, having an open mind, and innovative thinking are traits to develop through case studies, further reading and diligent research.
Global: Knowledge of languages, a good understanding, and felicity towards cultural differences, broad-minded ability to handle situations and sensitivity to others will stand you in good stead globally. French, German, Mandarin, and English are popular languages to learn well. Your linguistic skills will also empower you in your role as an investment banker. Volunteering, disaster relief camps, foreign trips and such are great ways to build on these skills.
Building Relationships: Social skills, dressing appropriately, relationship-enhancing skills, and a healthy attitude that goodwill will aid you on the path to success. Customer acquisition and retention never happen by luck. You will need one or all of them on a daily basis, 24x7 to be able to clinch those deals and earn those fantastic brokerage fees and commissions.
Wrapping it up
The role is not an easy one. It is your drive and belief that will keep you focused as you move upwards. It is all about being on stage for much longer than you will ever expect. If you have these skills, very well! Learn more and acquire new ones as you retain the best.