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Non-Financial Skills Required In Finance

On 02/22/2013, in Career, by Jordan Wilson

A career in finance requires strong financial technical skills and experience.

A truly successful career in finance requires strong complementary non-financial skills.

While this post focuses on finance, the need to develop complementary expertise applies in almost any industry or job. As you advance in any job, the technical component lessens and the soft skills become more important.

If you want long-term career success, strengthen your non-technical skills.

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Too many people wait until the last minute (or when it is too late) to try and improve their career prospects. If you want a prosperous future, you had better get busy today.

Young adults should start developing necessary lifelong skills and experiences before they enter the workforce. That means taking courses, developing direct and indirect skills and experiences, and beginning to build networks.

If you want to succeed in the future, you need to plan now. Then strengthen your resume over a 3-5 year period to make yourself an attractive job candidate. 

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Knight Kiplinger, head of Kiplinger financial media, created a nice asset management video.

8 Keys to Financial Security is exactly that. Tips for protecting your assets and growing wealth.

As per usual, I add my two-cents to Mr. Kiplinger’s wealth management recommendations. 

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Sounding like you are smart, does not mean that you are.

I think this is an underrated problem for many people.

Something that came to mind, yet again, while reading a Seth Godin post

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In Learning Real Job Skills in School?, I pointed out disconnects between the university experience and the real world.

University students (and often the administration) are not thrilled with professors who challenge students, force them to contribute in class, make them work in groups, complete assignments on time, etc.

However, in the actual business world, everything is different.

This leads to a skills gap between what employers want and what schools produce. 

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Want a Job? Think Global

On 10/25/2011, in Career, by Jordan Wilson

Economic conditions in your local region may mean there are few available jobs in your area of expertise or interest.

If you want to stay in your home town (or vicinity), you may have to take a lesser position or be unemployed for an extended period.

But if you are open to looking farther afield, you may be able to find a position that meets your career goals. And you may obtain a broader life experience in the process. 

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(More) Grade Inflation

On 07/19/2011, in Formal Education, by Jordan Wilson

In Academics Versus Extracurricular Activities, I compared the relative importance of grades versus outside interests when companies assess job candidates.

In my opinion, while grades do play a role in attracting a job offer, other factors play a greater part in the equation. And over time, the importance of grades diminishes significantly.

A lot of this has to do with the difficulty in comparing grades between schools. 

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How to Optimize Your Education

On 03/26/2011, in Formal Education, by Jordan Wilson

I was asked by a reader for recommendations on universities that specialize in “wealth management” or “investment banking” studies.

It is difficult to give specific recommendations as there are so many variables that go into the right choice for each different individual. Cost, courses offered, area of specialization, distance from home, friends, location, commute, extracurricular activities, etc. All these play a part in determining the best option for a student.

And, as she is based in Singapore, my direct knowledge of universities in the region is limited. If any readers have advice, please leave a comment.

However, I can provide a few general comments on where and what to study.

How to optimize your education and increase the probability of a successful career.

My examples are finance related, but the principles relate to any field of study. 

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Underemployed College Graduate

On 01/02/2011, in Formal Education, by Jordan Wilson

An interesting article, with statistics, showing that many people today possess university degrees but work in jobs that do not require them.

For what it is worth, a few quick thoughts from my side.

And as an added bonus, a lesson in investing based on the author’s analysis.

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