Career Skills Seminar
Master in Financial Management
31 January 2005
Life is always easy as a child. You bear no responsibility, are easily entertained, and do not have any worries about long term commitments or other such things. The only thing you have to worry about is doing your homework. Your future career is also unambiguous. For instance, when I was a child, I always wanted to be a fireman. There was no worrying about the pay, where the job would be located, or whether I would be accepted or not. I wanted to be a fireman, have a red truck, be a hero and that is it. As you get older, however, this simplicity starts to fade away and ...view middle of the document...
However, studying in Gent this year really has had a positive impact on me. Not only have I learned a great deal about finance and management, but I also have a much clearer picture of what kind of companies I will apply to, and where I see myself next year. This, however, is not to say that I know what I want to do for my entire life. But I at least know where to start, and I can then see where life takes me after that.
Thus, I have decided to start my career in finance. Although I am applying for internships and traineeships in investment banking with firms such as JP Morgan and Morgan Stanley, I am relying more on large multinational companies and consultancy firms rather than banks. Although the pay is excellent in investment banking, the long working hours, together with the excessive amounts of stress, have deterred me from following this path. I believe that working in a multinational company will, in the short term, balance my personal needs and objectives. The salaries are rather good, the working hours relatively short compared to banking, and the atmosphere in the workplace is usually enjoyable and more relaxed. Job flexibility is also rather high, especially in multinational companies that own subsidiaries all over the world. This is important to me as I have an international background, and would like to work in a big European city. Another very important factor to consider is that these kinds of companies provide everything for you to evolve and grow as fast as possible, and this is reflected by a steep learning curve. For these reasons, I believe that a career in the finance department of a large corporation (P&G, General Electric, â€¦) would suit my short-term career goals. On a longer horizon, however, a big question mark remains.
In order to discuss my long-term goals, it is important to first mention what I expect from life, but also to analyze my career anchors (Edgar Schein, 1978). In the shorter term, my goal is to make as much money as possible, while doing a job that I enjoy. This does not have to be my dream job, as I want to be financially independent from my parents as soon as possible. However, on the longer term, things are different. My first goal in life is not to make money, have an important position, or even be successful. What I want from life is to be happy. If these factors will contribute to my happiness, then I should follow them. But I do not want to just concentrate on my career and forget everything else. Life is too short for that. I want to find the right balance between work and pleasure, and do something I really want to do. For instance, I really enjoy social interaction with people, creativity (music, movies, photography), traveling, and helping people. Ideally, I would like to incorporate these into my future, long-term career. In other words, I want to enjoy life!
Concerning my D.A.T.A. career anchors, I believe they suit me rather well. An overview...