Being able to communicate your own story is crucial for interviews, informal chats, and networking events, said panelists at the Career Development Center‘s recent Career Spotlight on funding, treasury, and corporate finance.
Speakers sharing their experience and advice included Phil Conte, BS ’89, MBA ’01, executive vice president, chief financial officer, The Africa Center; Alexander Zimmerman, MBA ’08, director, working capital, global procurement, Pfizer; Erika Waddell Barrett, MBA ’13, finance manager, AMEX; and Kendra Mathias Nelson, manager, merchandise margin, Toys “R” Us.
While the discussion focused on graduate students pursuing a finance career, panelists shared these suggestions for any business school student, regardless of industry or level:
- Cultivate relationships within your current network, with peers and professors, and within your firm
- Diversify your background with a global perspective
- Learn more about individual firms in a chosen industry
As for specific skills students need to succeed, panelists pointed to business and interpersonal communication, Excel mastery, and one that can’t be taught—a passion for their work.
Passion is the quality that can turn a generic tale into a truly special story, making prospective employers want to read more.