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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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Creating a Master Resume

On 01/26/2013, in Cover Letters & Resumes, by Jordan Wilson

I plan to spend the next few posts discussing how to create a strong resume or curriculum vitae.

I tend to use resume and curriculum vitae (CV) interchangeably, so please indulge me.

There are many ways to create a great resume, but I want to offer my advice on my recommended method. Over time, it will strengthen your CV and marketability.

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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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Every day, I read news articles that make me laugh, cry, and reach for the tequila bottle. Usually at the same time. Pretty much the same as dealing with my nephew.

Today’s story that had me shaking my head (and googling “fall out shelters” because I fear a coming apocalypse) comes courtesy of the United Kingdom.

Do companies that only interview and hire the best students discriminate against graduates with lower marks? “Yes, yes, yes,” my nephew is screaming. 

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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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(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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Get a Head Start on Your Career

On 07/07/2011, in Career, Finding a Job, by Jordan Wilson

Courtesy of Investopedia, a good article entitled “4 Ways To Get A Head Start On Your Financial Career”.

While the article is finance specific, the general lessons apply to most career paths.

As the article states, in today’s job market, it is important to appear a more attractive employment candidate than your many competitors.

Here are a few thoughts from my side. 

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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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Fun Ways to Enhance Your Resume

On 04/29/2010, in Career, Informal Education, by Jordan Wilson

Charles Purdy offers ways to strengthen your resume and have some fun at the same time.

A few of the items I have suggested in previous posts. Please see here, here, and here for my thoughts on extracurricular activities and their impact on job prospects.

Regardless of any specific suggestion made by Mr. Purdy, they all share common traits:

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