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Three Top Women in Finance and Their Career Advice

Being considered “the best” at anything can be difficult. But when you’re a woman in a male-dominated industry, it can...

Published July 03, 2018

Being considered “the best” at anything can be difficult. But when you’re a woman in a male-dominated industry, it can prove to be even harder. These women have demonstrated that they’re not just good at their jobs as women, they’re good at their jobs, period. And on their path to the top, there’s no question that they’ve learned some valuable lessons along the way. Here are their personal career tips for excelling in any profession:

Mary Callahan Erodes, Chief Executive, JP Morgan Asset Management

Why she’s great: Not only did she help to grow assets under her management to 1.9 trillion dollars, she heads up special internal programs such as ASCEND, a sponsorship program that helps to promote female and ethnically diverse talent.

Her career tip: Mary has notably stated that it’s important not to be a jack of all trades: “You have to be a subject matter expert in something, not everything — but in something. Go very, very, very deep into a subject. Know more than anybody else will know on that subject. Obsess about it.”

Abigail Johnson, Chief Executive Officer, Fidelity Investments

Why she’s great: She proved herself as a valuable asset working her way up from intern to CEO over her many years at the company.

Her career tip: Abigail thinks leaders should “unite and concur” rather than just give directives. She stated in a recent interview: “In my experience, encouraging a team-oriented culture that is focused on uniting employees behind a shared sense of purpose and a common goal is more effective than offering directives. If you and your leadership team are on the same page with this approach, it is much easier to engage employees throughout the firm to meet those collective goals.”

Margaret Keane, Chief Executive Officer, Synchrony Financial

Why she’s great: She believes having employees with diverse backgrounds is better for everyone and is passionate about helping women get into more leadership roles.

Her career tip: All experience is good experience according to Margaret: “Life happens — and the conflicting demands of work and home often change your ‘original’ path. Lateral movements, or even moves to smaller positions, can differentiate skills and experience in ways that eventually lead to bigger roles.”

In a recent survey done by Laurel Road, we found that women have a less active role in their financial lives as compared to men but sacrifice more. Find out more.

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