Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do at UBS?
Hailing from a family of lawyers (my siblings and even my brother-in-law), I aspired to be different so I took the leap into the finance industry with UBS. I’m currently a graduate trainee in Singapore.
My current rotation is with the global ultra-high net worth Southeast Asia Indonesia team in business management. I collaborate with team members to achieve operational efficiency and to develop the Wealth Management business. My role gives me an insight into the strong relationships we build with our clients, helping me to develop my client management skills.
How did you manage the transition from finishing university to becoming a graduate trainee?
I saw it as an opportunity to start afresh. I completed my degree in London and it was a big change to go from the comfort of an overseas campus back to Singapore and then to start my new role.
Joining the Graduate Talent Program (GTP) helped me to navigate the corporate world. We had a week of inductions where trainees across Asia Pacific joined us in Singapore. Our senior managers took part in the training and gave us an overview of the UBS business model as well as sharing their experiences of working at the company.
Was the culture what you expected?
I felt a sense of fulfillment, recognition and belonging after my very first day. Prior to graduation, I’d met with individuals who had worked in the finance industry and most of them told me that in reality it was an intimidating and difficult industry to work in. However, I didn't experience this here.
Our culture revolves around three behaviours – integrity, challenge and collaboration. Even as a trainee, I can ask questions and reach out to different individuals regardless of rank, title or business area. I find myself constantly contributing and providing feedback during meetings. New ideas are always welcomed and recognized, and everyone is accommodating and helpful. I never expected myself to feel so at home this quickly!
How has your team played a role in your development?
My team has been very encouraging and helpful in my development. One of the most significant moments was when my manager assigned me a business planning and forecasting project. It was initially daunting, but with the help of my team, I managed to understand and capture the stakeholders’ interest to complete the project. This gave me a sense of recognition and fulfillment, knowing that I had a role to play in the team.
What was the most exciting project you worked on?
Helping to organize the Singapore Appreciation Dinner 2017 was one of the most exciting projects I've worked on so far. I volunteered to help plan this major event outside of my day-to-day role and I was glad for the opportunity to work with various colleagues across the bank. I learnt to work effectively under pressure, and also to collaborate successfully with colleagues outside of my business area.
If there were a story about you in the newspaper, what would the headline say?
"A transition from sneakers to Oxfords."
My brother and I collect sneakers. Prior to joining UBS, I wore different sneakers for every day of the week. After joining UBS, I've been swiftly converted to wearing black formal Oxfords every day. Maybe this is symbolic of me growing up? I would like to think so!