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A day in the life of an asset management consultant: Greek crisis and ‘healthy’ stress levels
What is it like to work a London office of one of the world’s biggest advisory firms? A FinBuzz guest writer shares her daily working routine.
It may look like I live in a fairy tale, but I worked hard to get it and don’t plan on slowing down any time soon. I have a degree from an American business school and moved to London right after studies. Recently I changed jobs and am very content.
Three months ago I started a position with a financial consultancy that works with corporate and central banks in Europe, as well as insurance companies.
I wake up, brush my teeth, and leave the house. My commute to work only takes one minute. Literally. I live and work in the West End and I am very lucky that my office of 40 employees recently moved to the area. When I knew that the office was moving, I looked for a place in the same area.
When I get to my desk, I start the day by making myself a cup of coffee and reading all the news in FT, Economist and other major publications, looking not only for general developments, but for news in my area of expertise as well. We work a lot with EU banks, including lots of Greek projects. So every single day I read articles on the front page that I later use in my work. It is an interesting feeling, because you have to adapt and change your strategies every day, depending on how things develop in Greece. I feel that what I am doing at the moment is at the epicentre of the financial world.
We start gathering for a team meeting. We work in teams that are constantly changing, depending on projects. The minimum time you spend on one team is three months, and the maximum – one year.
Most of people in the office are from Europe, especially France and Greece. But we also have Italians, Germans, Chinese, Indians… everyone.
I like working in an international team like this, because we have local people who know culture and the language of Greece in our case, but we also have contributions from the other members, who have very fresh and diverse views.
All of us are global citizens: people from Greece who work here are not very typical Greeks, as well as people from Italy are not very typical Italians. They are more global Greeks, global Italians, etc. It seems as if we are all on the same wavelength, but each of us also contributes his/her own perks.
So we discuss plans for the day as a team. Usually we will have a conference call with a client and decide who prepares what.
I worked in a classic investment bank before. The business model there is traditional and you are not expected to develop quickly. All the projects that we do here are new and unique, no one has worked on anything identical before, so no one knows how exactly we approach it; there is no procedure. That’s why we feel like we are all in the same boat: senior members and people like me, who joined recently, are all welcome to put something on the table, to join the discussion, to share views and ideas. This is definitely my favourite part of everything I do workwise – discussing ideas with colleagues, brainstorming, finding a new way to do things.
Conference call with a client. Last week I went on a business trip to Greece. I love meeting clients, because it effective to meet personally to discuss and agree on an action plan. So the conference ca