20 answers
Asked Viewed 295 times Translate

Important Skills to Break into Finance?


+25 Karma if successful
From: You
To: Friend
Subject: Career question for you
26
100% of 22 Pros
100% of 2 Students

20 answers


Updated Translate

Staci’s Answer

There are many skills that cross over to a finance career. It is important to do well in school - any type of business degree and be well versed in Excel as well as learning Tableau is a good skill too. It is also very important to have solid people skills - good communication skills for example - to be able to build relationships and trust with your business partners.

2
100% of 2 Pros
Updated Translate

Danny’s Answer

Hi Baily. I believe in order to break into Finance, you must possess a few attributes and a set skills. Most importantly, you must love numbers and or math. Secondly, having proficiency or mastering programs such as MS EXCEL will help tremendously. Last but not least knowledge about the industry will help you to become great at finance and in return it could lead you to where in finance you want to be. Thank you and the best of luck.

2
100% of 2 Pros
Updated Translate

Darin’s Answer

Math. Lots and lots of math. It also depends on what you want to do within finance. Just to name a few; accounting, payroll, financial planning, tax. You can find classes for all those plus other finance courses I didn't even mention at most colleges. Like I said it depends what you want to do

2
100% of 2 Pros
Updated Translate

brian’s Answer

There are already a lot of great answers here. From my perspective, finance skills involve critical thinking and synthesizing information from many (often multidisciplinary) sources. There are many ways to develop these skills, including reading finance and economics texts and having informational interviews with professionals in the specific finance segments that interest you. If you are still in school, even taking classes like philosophy or laboratory science can help you develop the skills. If this sounds strange, remember also that finance itself cuts across all business (and even non-profit) fields. I also suggest choosing an underlying business that interests you and ignites your passion. Finally, if you have a culture and colleagues you like, you have a recipe for career success and happiness. Good luck to you!

1
100% of 1 Pros
Updated Translate

Silas’s Answer

Hi Bailey,

To break into the Finance industry I would recommend taking a financial modeling course to become well versed in the area. If this is not available then I would become proficient in excel through studying on your own. Additionally, it is important to have strong communication skills and ability to put together presentation decks.

1
100% of 1 Pros
Updated Translate

Tad’s Answer

Hell Bailey,

I feel the most important skills to break into finance are a basic understanding of accounting and how the financial statements link to one another. In addition, the most important skill(s) in my opinion are time management and communication.

0
Updated Translate

Robert’s Answer

Bailey,

A few important skills to have in order to break into finance - show the ability to understand financial concepts, be able to learn new technologies, have a strong work ethic and be reliable, show the willingness to learn new things and be challenged. Demonstrate these traits and you will be successful. You'll learn a lot about your field while on the job, breaking in and marketing yourself as someone who can demonstrate those skillsets will set you up for success.


0
Updated Translate

Linda’s Answer

I think the important things are of course match skills but also the ability to make sense out of complex data. Advanced skills in Microsoft excel are also a big part of any job in finance - Linda

0
Updated Translate

Chris’s Answer

Bailey,

Whether you want to be in the back office working internally or in the front office working with clients the most important tip I can give you to break into finance would be to Network.

Networking is critical in finance as your reputation can carry more weight than your degree after so many years post graduation. Networking can provide you with different avenues of finance you never knew about and teach you more about areas you are interested in. At the end of the day you want a job in an area you want to be in and networking, a college degree with a solid GPA (whether it is at a target school or not), and experience will land you where you want.

Best of luck!

0
Updated Translate

Jason’s Answer

Skills - math, Excel, organization, communication, PowerPoint
Background - 4 year degree in Accounting or Finance at a minimum, likely want to consider an MBA as well nowadays and potentially a certification depending on the type of role you're thinking of

0
Updated Translate

Melissa’s Answer

Hi Bailey,

I think you have a lot of really great suggestions here. A couple of other skills that might seem a bit surprising is basic computer programming and risk management. You don't need to be fluent in computer programming but having knowledge of the basics will make you a sought after candidate. Also risk management is a hot button topic right now and part of every industry. Understanding and being able to identify risk is a great skill to have and will set you above the other candidates for a position.

Best of Luck!
Melissa

0
Updated Translate

Melissa’s Answer

Hi Bailey,
To me, the most important skills are critical thinking and communication. You have to be able to analyze the data and present your findings in a comprehensible way to leadership. The presentation of data can be just as important as the numbers themselves. Good luck!

0
Updated Translate

Andres’s Answer

Hi Bailey, I would say detail-oriented, analytic and critical thinking for me is the most important.

0
Updated Translate

Anoosheh (Anna)’s Answer

Math and excel are very important.

0
Updated Translate

Michelle’s Answer

Hi Bailey,

There are several skills that will be important if you decide to pursue a career in Finance. Here are some basic skills then I would recommend to see what interest you and work with a Professional or Counselor to gain more insight. It would be advantageous if you could gain some experience by volunteering or apply for an internship or gain work experience.
Important skills include Accounting, Interpersonal and communication skills, Networking, Problem solving skills, Analytics, and the ability to understand and work numerically to draw conclusions.
All the Best!

0
Updated Translate

Sandesh’s Answer

Math, Excel, Discounted Cash Flow Analysis, Financial Forecasting, Valuations, CAPM, WACC

0
Updated Translate

Daniel’s Answer

Hi Bailey,

Depending on your interests, there are varying avenues and competencies necessary to break into particular fields. More specifically, finance has many different tracks such as investment banking, commercial banking, corporate finance, venture capital, private equity, hedge funds, asset management, and wealth management among others. However, there are a few necessary skills you should pursue that are common to all of these.

First and foremost, communication and writing skills cannot be understated. The ability to connect with others and breakdown complex analysis into simple and concise reports for clients and managers alike is essential to your career development.

Furthermore, networking is critical to opening that first door and many to follow. Building relationships with others whether as a friend, colleague, or mentoree creates and catalyzes your opportunities. Finding common connections (whether it be a school, area you grew up in, or a mutual friend) is an excellent way to reach out and grow your network. Asking a few questions or for advise will demonstrate you are proactive about your personal growth and development. Consequently, these people will become your cheerleaders and help pave the way to achievement.

Moreover, while different fields have varying nuanced competencies required to "break-through", excel and accounting are pivotal. No matter what financial track you pursue, understanding accounting concepts are practically a prerequisite to succeed. You certainly don't need to major in it, but the more you know in this field, the more you will standout among your peers... no matter the financial track.

If you have any questions about the different financial fields or anything else, please feel free to follow-up or reach out.

0
Updated Translate

Richard’s Answer

My son works in finance (entry-level, investment banking), and I spoke with him about your question. There are plenty of hard skills necessary: in order of importance least to greatest, you will want to be decent with excel, understand how companies and industries work and how to analyze them, know what bankers/FAs do/what your firm does, and be up-to-date on news and industry trends. Reading news and completing vault guides is great preparation for interviews.

0
Updated Translate

Christopher’s Answer

Hi Bailey,

This is a great question. I think having a keen interest and understanding of how financial markets work would be a good starting point. This will help you identify which areas you will be interested in exploring further. From there, I think any financial career involves math and numbers, so being able to work with lots of data and information is important. I would also be good with technology and softwares, as there are a few core ones, but new technology comes out rapidly. You want to be able to grasp and quickly adjust to new software. Relationships may be a bit understated in terms of job description, but I believe having great relationships and soft skills will help you communicate effectively. I hope some of these tips help, good luck!

0
Updated Translate

Coleman’s Answer

If you are looking to be good at finance I would agree with the suggestions of the previous answers. You need be good at math and able to not only understand how the math interacts with the market and the projections of different markets but depending on what field of finance, you also have to be able to explain of the math and projections / investments / trends to your clients.

If you are looking to break out into finance, it isn't just enough being good at finance. As in any industry you also need to be good at self promotion and marketing as well as reading and writing. All of these skills allow you to maximize your exposure in almost any job field, but in particular the customer facing job fields such as financial planners or portfolio managers.

Take into consideration online finance groups, or regional co-op professional groups, make friends and colleagues in the field. Post op-eds on blogs and other websites to build yourself a reputation. If you are more academic, commit to writing and publishing research articles in the field that can gain you repute.

0