Employment Evergreen

Why you should NOT choose a career in financial services?

Written by Nick James

Many of us dream of working in the financial and banking sectors. The reasons for this are simple. A career in financial services industry is known as a highly-paying one. It is considered to be quite safe as nobody expects financial services to disappear anytime soon. And, most importantly, many people assume that it is quite easy to sky-rocket your career in financial services industry.

Well, some of these are points can be true, but most of them are actually myths. Today I am going to tell you why a career in financial services may not be the best place for everyone.

1. Modest entry-level experience

career in financial services may begin with paperwork

Starting your career in any type of a large financial corporation is actually the worse decision one could take. Once you enter an organisation as some sort of a clerk, you will be dealing with paperwork and trivial task for at least a few years.

Even though it may pay a bit better than working for smaller companies, the experience that you get won’t allow you to move up in rankings quick. Hence, it is much better to actually join a small company or even a start-up during first few years of your career.

The main advantage of this is that you will be given lots of different work. If a company is small, you are likely to be given very challenging tasks, hence you will learn a lot. Also, working for a small company doesn’t mean a small paycheck. Companies like Trade360 employ around 50 staff members, yet make millions in profits.

2. Lack of side projects

If you are looking for a way to get rich, you do understand that most of the money can be earned not from 9am to 5pm, but from 6pm to 2am.

However, 95% of financial companies prohibit their employees to work on any side projects. 99% of such companies don’t allow any work to be done for other financial companies. Hence, you begin understanding the industry and developing the contacts, yet you are unable to benefit from this to a high extend.

Also, most of the employment contracts would come with heavy fines when an employee is found servicing other companies.

3. Career in financial services comes with bureaucracy

Financial services are heavily regulated. Hence, releasing any public information or simply designing an ad should come through quite a few checks. In other words, you might need to design your Christmas marketing campaign already in early summer to make sure everything gets approved on time.

If you are not patient, a career in financial services industry will kill all of your motivation. Of course, the smaller the company is, the less bureaucracy there is, yet it will always be present. There are also many do’s and don’ts and promoting financial products is actually quite a challenging task due to financial regulation.

4. Conservatism

Last but not least, the financial industry is known as one of the most conservative ones and this is certainly not suitable for everyone. You are expected to suit up, wear shoes and so on.

However, today conservatism could be avoided when joining a certain fintench company. Technically those represent the FS industry, yet such companies are much more start-up minded.

5. The final thought

Don’t get me wrong, working for financial companies is certainly great, yet should only do it when your expectations are correct. Don’t expect to get a best-possible entry-level experience from such company as Barclays, make sure you don’t want to work on your own projects and be ready to wait months for any semi-important decisions. And yes, get yourself a suit. Well, it is still possible to find some great jobs. How? Keep an eye on my next post.

About the author

Nick James

Nick James is a seasoned financial professional. He specializes in marketing of complex products for the financial services industry. At Career Geek Blog, Nick will be sharing the insights from financial, banking and trading industries, and will also be revealing how to progress in your career.