Investment banking director Jeffrey Maddox provides guidance for landing an investment banking role.
HOUSTON, TEXAS, July 15, 2022 — Careers in investment banking can be extremely demanding but provide professional and financial rewards in keeping with the challenges. According to investment banking director Jeffrey Maddox, many students pursue this career path directly out of graduate school, but it is also possible to make the transition after rising through the ranks in adjacent fields.
Maddox’s own career highlights a climbing through the ranks path many can follow.
Obtaining a solid education is a necessity for a career in the upper levels of finance. For Maddox, this meant earning both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in accounting. Maddox also obtained his CPA in Texas to increase his expertise.
His first position out of college was as an audit associate at PricewaterhouseCoopers, and many students who move into investment banking are recruited to top firms during undergraduate or graduate school.
Investment banking is an extremely competitive industry, making achieving in school extremely important. Strive for top ranking in school, compete for and land prestigious internships and start making connections right away to obtain a dream introductory role, per Maddox.
2. Pay Dues
Working up the ladder is a given in most industries, but in investment banking, there is a very defined career path. First transitions, from a role like analyst to associate, can take a couple of years, with subsequent promotions becoming more competitive and extremely merit-based. For high-achievers, this means an opportunity to jump ahead quickly.
Jeffrey Maddox’s first career climb was from analyst to associate. Almost 10 years after graduate school, he made his next major transition to Vice-President at Barclays Investment Bank. Subsequent promotions lead to the current role of director at BMO Capital Markets.
Maddox advises any investment banker to start searching for new opportunities when performance is high but promotions, raises or increased responsibility does not follow. Sometimes the problem is not with the individual but with career progression at a firm.
Changing firms can often provide increased compensation and benefits and access to an accelerated career path.
3. Master Soft Skills
Jeffrey Maddox advises a variety of skills are needed for success in investment banking. Many of these are specific to the job, but others are soft skills.
Investment banking requires advanced communication skills and the ability to break down complex topics for other experts as well as those with less experience in the field.
Networking can be a significant part of the job, particularly as new positions and challenges are sought. Master small talk skills and learn to recognize interesting anecdotes earlier to connect with clients and coworkers from day one.