Eva on her career in the Banking sector

Graduate-women.com interviews Eva, International Manager at ING.

What has been your biggest challenge?

Finding the right balance between being commercial and winning deals, while not taking too many risks.

What are the rewarding aspects of a career in your industry?

Again, I love the fact that my career has so many different elements and layers to it. Banking gives you a solid and broad knowledge base, which makes you extremely versatile as an employee. Also, the people I deal with are very interesting, and I’ve been able to work in a lot of different areas.

What do you do to ensure you get a break at the weekends?

I like to travel and am keen on exercising on weekends. However, it is not unusual that a bit of works needs to get done on weekends as well.

What's the best career advice you've ever received?

Take opportunities as they come along and always try to make the best of every situation.

What have you had to sacrifice/risk to get to the position you have?

A LOT of time. The hours can be very long, particular in the first years, and unlike in other jobs you essentially have to be available 24/7 during live deals. Inevitably, your plans outside of work will occasionally suffer, so an understanding partner is essential.

What did you want to be when you were growing up?

I always liked the idea of becoming an International Manager.

What differences do you believe being a woman has made to your career?

Although banking is still a male dominated industry, I do not believe that being a woman really makes a difference at all. I firmly believe that, as long as you work hard and deliver good results, you’ll be successful.

Finally, what advice would you give to aspiring graduate women who are pursuing a successful career?

Follow your goals with focus and drive. And remember - nothing is unachievable!

What has been the most exciting element of your career so far?

The multi-layered nature of my job. There’s a perfect mix of practical and desk-based work, working with people and numbers, working in teams or alone, and using both soft and hard skills.

What is your greatest achievement?

I’ve found that achievements change as you grow in your role. There are different types of achievements in a career in banking. Some are related to deals closed, while others may involve a successful negotiation with a client or even internally. So it’s hard to pick one achievement that stands out from the rest.

Who is, or has been, your role model and who is a strong role model for young women starting their career?

To be honest, I’ve never really had a specific role model. I’ve always picked the best qualities of each of my superiors, and have then tried to incorporate these into my actions.

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