Klaudia Kovács has been working as an analyst at Morgan Stanley for the last two years and is currently in the firm’s Securitized Products Group in London. Here she talks about what it’s like to work at the US bank as a junior.
1.Why did you choose to join Morgan Stanley after finishing university?
I studied Finance at Corvinus University in Budapest. Morgan Stanley was very appealing for me, both in terms of summer internships and for full-time jobs, due to the complex and challenging opportunities they offer connected to the field I studied. The firm is known for their thorough selection process, which was a good motivation for me to be part of a company filled with such high-quality talent. The benefits package was also very attractive. I started in Budapest, but spent six months in London on a short-term assignment, after which I was more than happy to accept the offer to be relocated to the London Sales and Trading team permanently.
2.You’re based at one of the UK’s largest financial hubs, Canary Wharf. How would you describe what it’s like for you to walk into work each day?
My role in Budapest involved working closely with the Sales and Trading team in London, and when I first had the opportunity to visit the office in Canary Wharf I was really impressed by the building and the area – it felt very different to Budapest. I was very proud to visit during my six-month assignment, so now I have relocated permanently the feeling is even stronger.
3.What’s the best thing about living and working in London?
The best thing is that you can work in one of the world’s leading financial centres, with a wide range of opportunities to meet and learn from financial professionals. I moved here to work, but the fact that the city is amazing with so many things to offer, made the decision so much easier.
4.What do you think the biggest misconception is about joining a financial firm in London?
In my experience, the biggest misconception is that the big financial firms work their junior people very hard. While it’s true that sometimes I work longer hours, Morgan Stanley stresses the importance of maintaining a work/life balance and I am really comfortable with the balance I have. Also, I have always been made to feel appreciated for my efforts.
5.What’s your top tip for someone who’s thinking about moving to London and applying for a role in banking, but perhaps feels unsure about making that big step?
For me, after graduating was the best time to decide on my future. I felt I had a lot of freedom to move to a big city and break into a new career like banking. I brought with me a lot of energy for new challenges and experiences. Choosing this time in my life to decide my future afforded me the time I needed to research where I wanted to work, and the role I wanted to do. I was lucky that I got this opportunity, as I would probably have been unsure about making the decision to apply for a job here and leave a city that I was already familiar with, but now that I am here I’ve realised that it would have been one of my biggest regrets if I hadn’t come.
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