Mr. Cohen, a career counselor specializing in Wall Street careers, has a long history working with prestigious firms and is a well-known media presence. He spoke to SCFAS members and guests about the many challenges financial professionals face in today’s job environment. In a wide-ranging presentation focused on those seeking a new position as well as the ‘just curious,’ Mr. Cohen focused on four main topic
¨ ‘Strategy’ (be forward-thinking, and prepare for a marathon, not a sprint)
¨ ‘Rejection’ (be thick-skinned; rejection is the norm, not the exception)
¨ ‘Job Search’ (have a good – not great – resume, a good story, be creative and be truthful).
Some highlights of Mr. Cohen’s helpful advice included: be flexible in what you want; always update your resume and have an electronic presence (e.g. LinkedIn); be respectful of your networking contacts; attain professional credentials (such as a CFA charter) if possible, and start a blog or publish if possible; and perhaps most important, don’t over-analyze setbacks or get too dejected. Many avenues may be opened when one closes.
Following his prepared remarks, Mr. Cohen concluded the evening by responding to questions from the audience on a number of topics, including where to find pockets of growth in the industry, how to discuss a non-compete agreement with prospective employers, and how to find and work with recruiters.
Many members stayed after the formal event to network and discuss Mr. Cohen’s remarks and suggestions; an informal survey indicated that all agreed that the presentation was helpful and informative. Given this great reception, we hope to have Mr. Cohen return as a guest speaker to the Society to assist our members in their career management endeavors.