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Cast a wider net to capture Finance jobs

Published on Friday, 03 May 2013

I worked in equity research with HSBC in India for three years and I am CFA and FRM qualified. I am also planning to start an MBA programme at the University of Hong Kong. Am I eligible to join the management associate programmes run by banks in Hong Kong? If not, are there any other areas where I can leverage my work experience in equity research to find suitable job opportunities in Hong Kong? The problem is I can't speak Cantonese or Putonghua. Dash

From your questions, I assume that you are living in Hong Kong and are looking for a career opportunity here. For management associate programmes at Hong Kong banks, candidates are usually required to be a permanent resident in Hong Kong or have a work visa.

If you are interested in the financial-services industry, you should be able to demonstrate your value to a prospective employer with your three years of experience in equity research and your financial qualifications. I would, though, suggest that you cast your net a bit wider.

For example, without knowing your strengths and orientation, there might be a greater chance for you to enter the sales profession in the financial-services industry. You could, for instance, target insurance and sell property, casualty, life or health insurance. Alternatively, you may want to go into equity sales in the financial markets and here your equity-research experience will come in handy.

Perhaps the biggest challenge selling anything is to ask yourself if you enjoy meeting with people and helping customers. In your case, it would also mean that your target audience would be those who speak English or your native language. Do now worry though, as I have come across many super salespeople in Hong Kong who only speak English.

Sidney Yuen, chairman and CEO, HBC, is an expert in the human resources outsourcing, technology and consulting fields

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