Strange things you will say in a sales job at an investment bank

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Jargon banking

If you’ve worked in a sales role with an investment bank, you'll probably be familiar with much of the list below. After all, this is an industry that likes its jargon and if you want to fit in, you're going to have to embrace that. If you work in sales already, this a refresher. If you're trying to get in, it's a vocab list.  Read. And retain.

● Balance sheet. Ok, this isn't strange, but you will say it a lot. Especially if you work in prime brokerage, where you will always be having to talk about your big sheet and why clients should give you their business because of it.

● Broker review. This isn't so much strange as scary. Broker reviews can be your savior or your slayer, depending upon how they go. Your clients basically rank you based upon your performance compared to others. If you do badly, it can be the end.

● Focus account. A focus account is an account that is dormant but could quickly become a high payer. In most cases it will not. Dream on.

● Follow-ups. Never be without one of these. You must always have a follow-up and you must always mention it in sales meetings and emails to your boss. A meeting with no follow-ups is a failure. Fabricate some if necessary.

● Great algos/Smart Order Router. You definitely have one of these. Everyone has the best algos on the street, and so do you. Everyone has a smart order router, even though it's just a standard order router doing its job; you have one too.

● He/she is my best friend. Your clients must be your best friends. Or at least you must refer to them as such, and treat them as if this were the case. If clients don't feel like your best friends, they won't give you their account. Seriously. You need to know their shoe size and the name and birthday of their third child.

● Low hanging fruit. It’s all about the low hanging fruit. Apparently these are clients that can quickly be changed from dormant or low paying to high payers. Also known as focus accounts. Same dream.

● Market share. But what % of the market share are you getting as a sales person from a client? So low? Also, what is your team's market share? Memorize it: you will need to speak of it often.

● Positive momentum. There's going to be a lot of this. You must  - You can never say that you had a bad meeting, it must always be spinned into something positive somehow. By using ‘positive momentum’, it shows that things are going in the right direction. It can be days away or years!

● Ranking. But which ranking do you have compared to others? And how is your firm ranked? And can you discuss this heavily in your call reports?

● Reaching out. You must be doing this a lot. Never just calling up on the off chance that someone might talk, but properly extending yourself.

● Run-rates. These are the numbers that will haunt you every week. They measure your success: your revenues and your likely revenues in future. Efficiently managed teams send out weekly updates. You will also be asked to talk about underpayers and overpayers vs. run-rates.

● Touching base. This is like reaching out, but a little more 2002. To be used interchangeably.

Jimmy Roberts is the pseudonym of a salesman in an investment bank

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