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Top five skills an investment banker needs

IFM_Investment Banker
Investment bankers assist companies in merging, acquiring, going public, or creating business plans

Many traits organizations look for in potential workers are obvious, but others are surprising. Within each, some nuances are difficult to measure but may make one person better suited to investment banking than another with a similar skill set.

We’ve listed the top five talents an investment banker requires and areas of study that can help them learn them.

Smarts

Investment bankers assist companies in merging, acquiring, going public, or creating business plans.

This is certainly the most noticeable trait. A strong mind with an emphasis on analytics, mathematics, finances, and economics helps with various employment needs.

However, it goes beyond these key competencies. Investment banking needs intellectual curiosity to grasp how a colleague’s work or other elements fit into the broader jigsaw as well as your own.

Investment bankers enjoy solving challenging issues and innovating. Mathematics, and science, such as physics, economics, engineering, and finance/accounting, as well as post-graduate certificate programs like Chartered Financial Analyst, drive intellectual skills and curiosity.

Discipline

Investment bankers earn substantial incomes, but few articles mention the long hours, hard effort, diligence, and self-discipline required to get them.

From entry-level analysts to managing directors, investment bankers work in a pressure cooker and must adjust to rigorous scrutiny and demands.

Some of these traits are intrinsic, but others can be learned through life experiences like graduating from law or medical school or playing on a collegiate sports team.

Creativity

Despite the rigour and structure of investment banking, creativity and innovation are highly valued. Top bankers can innovate products and services by uniquely approaching a job or issue.

Academics may encourage an instinctual trait that makes people see situations differently. Entrepreneurial business, scientific, and social science studies at university can foster innovation.

Acceptance

The globe is more connected, and business is too. Broad-mindedness and a deeper understanding of culture and society enable international commercial collaboration.

That knowledge and comprehension plus multilingualism are sought-after skills in investment banking.

Sociology and anthropology scholars with advanced language abilities like German or Mandarin are sought. Study abroad programs improve these talents.

Relationship Skills

As investment bankers advance, this final talent may be the most intangible but crucial.

Bankers must be able to handle difficult people in extreme situations, have high energy and a positive attitude that exudes power but also an “I understand your needs” attitude, and build and maintain client relationships. Investment banks profit from client fees. Thus, good interpersonal skills help attract and retain clients.

Many of the skills and personality traits needed for investment banking can be taught at universities, but some are intangible or innate.

In addition to these taught and inherent skills, investment banking requires someone who wants to learn and perform at the highest level in a tough setting.

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