Interview with Ami Kothari Mehta – Corporate Finance – FMCG

Kala Krishnan recently caught up with Ami Mehta,alumna of JBIMS, Mumbai. She works as Manager – Financial Planning & Analysis – New Categories at Cadbury India Ltd. She was kind enough to talk about  a few aspects around a career in Corporate Finance. She also gives us some perspective around how life in the corporate world is a couple of years after graduation.

 (Read : Corporate Finance – InsideIIM Career Guide)

1) Firstly, do you think theoretical knowledge you attain in a management school has an application in the practical work life or is there still a gap between academia and the industry?

Theory forms a part of our basics. Our basic ideas, concepts and principles are formed on the basis of the theory we learn in a management school. They are very necessary but at the same time the theory cannot be directly applied in practical areas, it always requires some modification and additional knowledge. So, there is a gap between industry and academia but the gap can be easily bridged through various techniques and experiences like training, peer interaction, work environment and work culture.

 

2)Today almost every other person has multiple academic degrees. Is it the need of the day or just a trend?  How do you differentiate yourself in the crowd?

Basically it does help in getting the best paid jobs in the industry in most cases; but the bigger factor remains the opportunity for role changes which get restricted because of a single degree.  For e.g., a single degree like a C.A may restrict your role while adding an MBA will give you a better platform along with a wider perspective to things. Areas like planning, analysis require candidates with a wider perspective and undoubtedly management skills.

However to differentiate yourself in a crowd multiple degrees are not the only thing, softer skills are also given importance. Aspects like how an individual approaches a problem, how he presents himself etc. helps him to stand out amongst the rest.

 

3) As an ambitious woman professional how do you maintain your work life balance?  What suggestions can you give to young budding professionals?

It is not very difficult to maintain the right work life balance when you are clear from the beginning about your priorities. Companies today respect work life balance and help women allowing them flexible working hours. At many places this may depend on your rapport with the superiors but it can be achieved. I have also seen companies which encourage working from home 2 or 3 times a month which is extremely beneficial. The basic principle lies in making yourself clear from day 1 on your  working hours and limitations and at the same time women can adopt means like working from home after a certain time or working while travelling so that you can leave your workplace early, thus various arrangement are possible without compromising on both your priorities.

 

4) Between a multinational and a small firm with greater responsibilities, which would you consider to be a better option for a starter?

It has to be an individual decision based on the benefits offered in a multinational or in a small firm with greater responsibilities. However there is no doubt that a multinational can be the best place to begin. It has all the best processes, best systems, and best compensation and also adds value to your profile.  On the other hand in case of a small firm you learn to work from the grass root level and understand various functions. You grow and develop with the firm.  Also in smaller firms there are no definite superior subordinate designations and hence everyone gets an opportunity to learn and grow together.

 

(If you are preparing to secure your dream job, you may want to visit – The InsideIIM Career Guide

Also see results of the InsideIIM Recruitment Survey 2012 )

 

5) Since you have experience in the field of corporate finance, what skills according to you are necessary to succeed and perform well in the area of corporate finance?

According to me analytical skills and an aptitude is important.  Corporate finance requires professionals to be disciplined and structured in their thoughts. At the same time, however theoretical it may sound ethics play a very important role. Passion for learning is of utmost importance, if you have the drive to learn something new and have a basic aptitude then it is not difficult to enhance your technical skills.

 

6) How would you describe a normal day in the life of a corporate finance professional?

There is no fixed routine that we follow as corporate finance professionals. Also the practice of submitting daily reports does not exist. We handle different projects and work according to the circumstances. There is a new problem waiting to be solved each day and deadlines are extremely important. We have our daily work priorities and anything related to that which comes our way needs to be done.

 

7) Any piece of advice for the new batch of professionals or any experience you would like to share with them?

My only advice to young professionals would be not to enter any field with an exit option planned in advance. Your selection criteria should not be based on a fool proof exit plan in mind.  What I mean is that at the entry level one must not be very choosy w.r.t a particular profile as pre-formed notions about an industry or role can be detrimental to the work output in a role.

 

As told to Kala Krishnan

 

You may be interested in :

Perspectives – Career perspectives from those who’ve faced the battles and reached the top.

The InsideIIM Career Guide

 

 

Our facebook page : InsideIIM

Follow us on twitter here : @InsideIIM

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“Marry someone who is accommodating and aware of the perils of your job” – Interview with Aditi Shukla Tara – Investment Banker

Aditi Shukla Tara has a very candid conversation with Kala Krishnan about investment banking, work-life balance and the recruitment situation in the industry.

Aditi Shukla Tara is an investment banker with a global M&A advisory firm. She is an alumna of XLRI Jamshedpur (Class of 2011) and Delhi College of Engineering (Class of 2007).  She has worked with Yahoo! in the past.

1) How much of what you learnt in business school, do you actually apply in your job? Do you feel a person needs to get trained again when joining an investment bank?

The management degree gives you the right base to start as it increases your understanding, enhances your grasping ability and familiarizes you with deadline pressure. Also, in India it is the basic recruitment criteria. However formal training upon joining is not necessary because the job is based on the apprenticeship model. You learn on the job, with the experience and opportunities that come your way.

 

2) Most people are told that investment banking is glamorous, exciting with crazy working hours. How much of it is true?

Crazy working hours is true, especially at the process preparation and deal closure stage. However, you earn only on a success fee basis and hence it is necessary that you put in all your effort so that your deal goes through. It is glamorous in the sense that you travel often and are put up in expensive hotels, but at the same time it is equally stressful and tedious and involves continuous travelling. Your lifestyle does not remain as glamorous as hectic. It is because the work life balance is worsened that you are compensated monetarily for the same.

 

3) A lot of people have a concern around ‘work-life balance’. Is there anything you do to get that balance? How do things change after important events like marriage?

Work life balance is extremely tedious. At an early stage in your career you cannot do much as a junior and your work hours are dictated by your senior. You have to marry someone who is accommodating and aware of the perils of your job.

 

4) What do you love the most about your job?

There are two things specifically. First, that the job provides an exposure across all sectors and you learn something new all the time, not limited by any particular domain. The second being, you get the opportunity to deal with people at higher levels in the client organization as M&A activity is something that is overseen by the corporate strategy team/CFO and his team. There is a lot to learn when you interact with such senior people and you understand how the strategy of a corporation is designed.

 

5) Given the tough market conditions, not a lot of people fancy themselves landing a front end job in an investment bank. What would be your suggestion to graduates preparing for their final placement season? Is there any way they can differentiate themselves to stand a good chance for those few openings?

All banks give a high degree of importance to academic performance and similar intellectual pursuits. Also, they prefer candidates who are strong in logical reasoning, have high powers of perception and are generally well aware. As correctly mentioned, the market conditions are quite tough and it’s possible that despite being an ideal candidate for an I banking job, there might not be any job openings. I would just like to wish all the graduates the best of luck for the placement season and advise them to keep a positive outlook towards all opportunities.

 

As told to Kala Krishnan

 

You may be interested in :

Perspectives – Career perspectives from those who’ve faced the battles and reached the top.

The InsideIIM Career Guide

Interview with Ankur Bansal – Vice-President, BlackSoil 

 

You can read everything about XLRI Jamshedpur here

Our facebook page : InsideIIM

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“To succeed you need to be a smart worker, not just a hard worker” – Interview with Ankur Bansal – Vice-President, BlackSoil

Kala Krishnan recently spoke to Ankur Bansal about investment banking and financial advisory,  skills needed to succeed in this industry and the future of boutique financial advisory firms in India such as his own firm. Read below :

1) What makes Investment Banking a glamorous career choice – the money or the work that is done?

It would undoubtedly be both. On the work front Investment banking exposes you to varied transactions like restructuring, strategy oriented transactions and also provides you with opportunities to meet high profile individuals like CEOs, CFOs etc. At the same time there is immense work pressure and work life balance is not very good. But this is compensated monetarily and by the relatively luxurious lifestyle it allows you to lead.

2) What are the skills necessary to succeed as an investment banker?

Academics is highly important and to go a long way confidence, overall persona, strong people and networking skills, capability to meet deadlines, innovation and out of the box thinking are a necessity. One also needs to be fully abreast of the markets with good marketing and number crunching skills. Finally to succeed you need to be a smart worker not just a hard worker.

3) Can you explain the difference between buy side and sell side under investment banking?

The approach for buy side and sell side is exactly opposite. On the buy side you represent your client who is the buyer to another party who is the seller. You look into various aspects like objectives of the client, value for money, due diligence, ways to reduce the valuation and make the deal interesting and more valuable for your client. On the sell side you represent your client to many potential buyers. You look into areas like trying to position your client better compared to his peers, market him well with potential investors/buyers and attain a higher valuation for him.

4) You have been part of a large set up like Citi, JP Morgan and now you yourself run a relatively smaller boutique, what are the pros and cons of working in such different set ups?

In case of a large setup your role is well defined and work is confined within a particular sector. You do not get exposure to work outside what you are hired for. Also there is no contribution to strategies and decision making early in your carrier. On the other hand in a smaller set up you have a lot of opportunities to work in different areas, manage and execute transactions by yourself and also take important top level decisions.

5) Lots of investment banking firms have come up in India in midst of the economic turmoil and on the other hand large banks are cutting down their positions, How do you see the firms making their mark?

India is a strong mid market place. There are a large number of companies in every sector. Hence for investment banking firms the strategy to focus on the right sector and the right clients is paramount and once you do that you can create a high volume of transactions for your firm. There are tremendous growth opportunities for smaller investment banking firms as large firms have a very high fee threshold, complex structures and also capital market deals such as IPOs, QIBs etc have not been executed in the current market scenario. Boutique firms are comparatively flexible on deal size and fees and hence can enjoy the opportunity to capture a larger market. But goes without saying, competition has only become more cut throat.

(11th December 2013- Want to be a part of BlackSoil Advisory- Apply Here)

 

6) How much does undergraduate education and extracurricular activities help in investment banking as a career?

Undergraduate education provides the basic platform for the students to grow while extracurricular activities help in overall personality development, cultivating team work skills and more importantly provide real life experiences at an early stage. This helps to differentiate yourself in a crowd.

7) How must a fresh finance professional, having selected investment banking as a career project himself to be able to land a good entry-level job?

Being strong in academics for a fresh finance professional is a must, which means have a good understanding of financial statements, law, structuring, valuation methodologies coupled with awareness with regards to markets and about the development in various sectors in the global and domestic economy. All this, the candidate must be able to substantiate with examples. To sum he should be able to show passion for the job.

 

You may be interested in :

Perspectives – Career perspectives from those who’ve faced the battles and reached the top.

The InsideIIM Career Guide

 

(11th December 2013- Open Position in BlackSoil Advisory- Apply Here)

 

About Ankur

Prior to co-founding BlackSoil, Ankur has over 5 years extensive work experience in investment banking and has worked across several large foreign investment banks in the country like JP Morgan, Citi and JM Morgan Stanley. He has in-depth knowledge of Indian capital markets and been part of deal teams for various large corporates across industries. Has managed and executed more than 30 marquee Indian capital market transactions aggregating to almost US$ 15Bn through products like IPOs, DRs, QIPs, Blocks, Domestic Convertible, Rights, Buyback and Pre-IPO placements.

He is a Chartered Accountant and a CFA charterholder . He completed his Bachelors of Commerce degree from the prestigious Narsee Monjee College of Commerce and Economics, Mumbai.

 

You may also be interested in : Interview with Aditi Tara – Investment Banker

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Interview with Ami Kothari Mehta – Corporate Finance – FMCG

Kala Krishnan recently caught up with Ami Mehta,alumna of JBIMS, Mumbai. She works as Manager – Financial Planning & Analysis – New Categories at Cadbury India Ltd. She was kind enough to talk about  a few aspects around a career in Corporate Finance. She also gives us some perspective around how life in the corporate world is a couple of years after graduation.

 (Read : Corporate Finance – InsideIIM Career Guide)

1) Firstly, do you think theoretical knowledge you attain in a management school has an application in the practical work life or is there still a gap between academia and the industry?

Theory forms a part of our basics. Our basic ideas, concepts and principles are formed on the basis of the theory we learn in a management school. They are very necessary but at the same time the theory cannot be directly applied in practical areas, it always requires some modification and additional knowledge. So, there is a gap between industry and academia but the gap can be easily bridged through various techniques and experiences like training, peer interaction, work environment and work culture.

 

2)Today almost every other person has multiple academic degrees. Is it the need of the day or just a trend?  How do you differentiate yourself in the crowd?

Basically it does help in getting the best paid jobs in the industry in most cases; but the bigger factor remains the opportunity for role changes which get restricted because of a single degree.  For e.g., a single degree like a C.A may restrict your role while adding an MBA will give you a better platform along with a wider perspective to things. Areas like planning, analysis require candidates with a wider perspective and undoubtedly management skills.

However to differentiate yourself in a crowd multiple degrees are not the only thing, softer skills are also given importance. Aspects like how an individual approaches a problem, how he presents himself etc. helps him to stand out amongst the rest.

 

3) As an ambitious woman professional how do you maintain your work life balance?  What suggestions can you give to young budding professionals?

It is not very difficult to maintain the right work life balance when you are clear from the beginning about your priorities. Companies today respect work life balance and help women allowing them flexible working hours. At many places this may depend on your rapport with the superiors but it can be achieved. I have also seen companies which encourage working from home 2 or 3 times a month which is extremely beneficial. The basic principle lies in making yourself clear from day 1 on your  working hours and limitations and at the same time women can adopt means like working from home after a certain time or working while travelling so that you can leave your workplace early, thus various arrangement are possible without compromising on both your priorities.

 

4) Between a multinational and a small firm with greater responsibilities, which would you consider to be a better option for a starter?

It has to be an individual decision based on the benefits offered in a multinational or in a small firm with greater responsibilities. However there is no doubt that a multinational can be the best place to begin. It has all the best processes, best systems, and best compensation and also adds value to your profile.  On the other hand in case of a small firm you learn to work from the grass root level and understand various functions. You grow and develop with the firm.  Also in smaller firms there are no definite superior subordinate designations and hence everyone gets an opportunity to learn and grow together.

 

(If you are preparing to secure your dream job, you may want to visit – The InsideIIM Career Guide

Also see results of the InsideIIM Recruitment Survey 2012 )

 

5) Since you have experience in the field of corporate finance, what skills according to you are necessary to succeed and perform well in the area of corporate finance?

According to me analytical skills and an aptitude is important.  Corporate finance requires professionals to be disciplined and structured in their thoughts. At the same time, however theoretical it may sound ethics play a very important role. Passion for learning is of utmost importance, if you have the drive to learn something new and have a basic aptitude then it is not difficult to enhance your technical skills.

 

6) How would you describe a normal day in the life of a corporate finance professional?

There is no fixed routine that we follow as corporate finance professionals. Also the practice of submitting daily reports does not exist. We handle different projects and work according to the circumstances. There is a new problem waiting to be solved each day and deadlines are extremely important. We have our daily work priorities and anything related to that which comes our way needs to be done.

 

7) Any piece of advice for the new batch of professionals or any experience you would like to share with them?

My only advice to young professionals would be not to enter any field with an exit option planned in advance. Your selection criteria should not be based on a fool proof exit plan in mind.  What I mean is that at the entry level one must not be very choosy w.r.t a particular profile as pre-formed notions about an industry or role can be detrimental to the work output in a role.

 

As told to Kala Krishnan

 

You may be interested in :

Perspectives – Career perspectives from those who’ve faced the battles and reached the top.

The InsideIIM Career Guide

 

 

Our facebook page : InsideIIM

Follow us on twitter here : @InsideIIM

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Message Author

Kala Krishnan recently caught up with Ami Mehta,alumna of JBIMS, Mumbai. She works as Manager – Financial Planning & Analysis – New Categories at Cadbury India Ltd. She was kind enough to talk about  a few aspects around a career in Corporate Finance. She also gives us some perspective around how life in the corporate world is a couple of years after graduation.

 (Read : Corporate Finance – InsideIIM Career Guide)

1) Firstly, do you think theoretical knowledge you attain in a management school has an application in the practical work life or is there still a gap between academia and the industry?

Theory forms a part of our basics. Our basic ideas, concepts and principles are formed on the basis of the theory we learn in a management school. They are very necessary but at the same time the theory cannot be directly applied in practical areas, it always requires some modification and additional knowledge. So, there is a gap between industry and academia but the gap can be easily bridged through various techniques and experiences like training, peer interaction, work environment and work culture.

 

2)Today almost every other person has multiple academic degrees. Is it the need of the day or just a trend?  How do you differentiate yourself in the crowd?

Basically it does help in getting the best paid jobs in the industry in most cases; but the bigger factor remains the opportunity for role changes which get restricted because of a single degree.  For e.g., a single degree like a C.A may restrict your role while adding an MBA will give you a better platform along with a wider perspective to things. Areas like planning, analysis require candidates with a wider perspective and undoubtedly management skills.

However to differentiate yourself in a crowd multiple degrees are not the only thing, softer skills are also given importance. Aspects like how an individual approaches a problem, how he presents himself etc. helps him to stand out amongst the rest.

 

3) As an ambitious woman professional how do you maintain your work life balance?  What suggestions can you give to young budding professionals?

It is not very difficult to maintain the right work life balance when you are clear from the beginning about your priorities. Companies today respect work life balance and help women allowing them flexible working hours. At many places this may depend on your rapport with the superiors but it can be achieved. I have also seen companies which encourage working from home 2 or 3 times a month which is extremely beneficial. The basic principle lies in making yourself clear from day 1 on your  working hours and limitations and at the same time women can adopt means like working from home after a certain time or working while travelling so that you can leave your workplace early, thus various arrangement are possible without compromising on both your priorities.

 

4) Between a multinational and a small firm with greater responsibilities, which would you consider to be a better option for a starter?

It has to be an individual decision based on the benefits offered in a multinational or in a small firm with greater responsibilities. However there is no doubt that a multinational can be the best place to begin. It has all the best processes, best systems, and best compensation and also adds value to your profile.  On the other hand in case of a small firm you learn to work from the grass root level and understand various functions. You grow and develop with the firm.  Also in smaller firms there are no definite superior subordinate designations and hence everyone gets an opportunity to learn and grow together.

 

(If you are preparing to secure your dream job, you may want to visit – The InsideIIM Career Guide

Also see results of the InsideIIM Recruitment Survey 2012 )

 

5) Since you have experience in the field of corporate finance, what skills according to you are necessary to succeed and perform well in the area of corporate finance?

According to me analytical skills and an aptitude is important.  Corporate finance requires professionals to be disciplined and structured in their thoughts. At the same time, however theoretical it may sound ethics play a very important role. Passion for learning is of utmost importance, if you have the drive to learn something new and have a basic aptitude then it is not difficult to enhance your technical skills.

 

6) How would you describe a normal day in the life of a corporate finance professional?

There is no fixed routine that we follow as corporate finance professionals. Also the practice of submitting daily reports does not exist. We handle different projects and work according to the circumstances. There is a new problem waiting to be solved each day and deadlines are extremely important. We have our daily work priorities and anything related to that which comes our way needs to be done.

 

7) Any piece of advice for the new batch of professionals or any experience you would like to share with them?

My only advice to young professionals would be not to enter any field with an exit option planned in advance. Your selection criteria should not be based on a fool proof exit plan in mind.  What I mean is that at the entry level one must not be very choosy w.r.t a particular profile as pre-formed notions about an industry or role can be detrimental to the work output in a role.

 

As told to Kala Krishnan

 

You may be interested in :

Perspectives – Career perspectives from those who’ve faced the battles and reached the top.

The InsideIIM Career Guide

 

 

Our facebook page : InsideIIM

Follow us on twitter here : @InsideIIM

Profile gravatar of kala

Kala K

Message Author


Message Author

Kala Krishnan recently caught up with Ami Mehta,alumna of JBIMS, Mumbai. She works as Manager – Financial Planning & Analysis – New Categories at Cadbury India Ltd. She was kind enough to talk about  a few aspects around a career in Corporate Finance. She also gives us some perspective around how life in the corporate world is a couple of years after graduation.

 (Read : Corporate Finance – InsideIIM Career Guide)

1) Firstly, do you think theoretical knowledge you attain in a management school has an application in the practical work life or is there still a gap between academia and the industry?

Theory forms a part of our basics. Our basic ideas, concepts and principles are formed on the basis of the theory we learn in a management school. They are very necessary but at the same time the theory cannot be directly applied in practical areas, it always requires some modification and additional knowledge. So, there is a gap between industry and academia but the gap can be easily bridged through various techniques and experiences like training, peer interaction, work environment and work culture.

 

2)Today almost every other person has multiple academic degrees. Is it the need of the day or just a trend?  How do you differentiate yourself in the crowd?

Basically it does help in getting the best paid jobs in the industry in most cases; but the bigger factor remains the opportunity for role changes which get restricted because of a single degree.  For e.g., a single degree like a C.A may restrict your role while adding an MBA will give you a better platform along with a wider perspective to things. Areas like planning, analysis require candidates with a wider perspective and undoubtedly management skills.

However to differentiate yourself in a crowd multiple degrees are not the only thing, softer skills are also given importance. Aspects like how an individual approaches a problem, how he presents himself etc. helps him to stand out amongst the rest.

 

3) As an ambitious woman professional how do you maintain your work life balance?  What suggestions can you give to young budding professionals?

It is not very difficult to maintain the right work life balance when you are clear from the beginning about your priorities. Companies today respect work life balance and help women allowing them flexible working hours. At many places this may depend on your rapport with the superiors but it can be achieved. I have also seen companies which encourage working from home 2 or 3 times a month which is extremely beneficial. The basic principle lies in making yourself clear from day 1 on your  working hours and limitations and at the same time women can adopt means like working from home after a certain time or working while travelling so that you can leave your workplace early, thus various arrangement are possible without compromising on both your priorities.

 

4) Between a multinational and a small firm with greater responsibilities, which would you consider to be a better option for a starter?

It has to be an individual decision based on the benefits offered in a multinational or in a small firm with greater responsibilities. However there is no doubt that a multinational can be the best place to begin. It has all the best processes, best systems, and best compensation and also adds value to your profile.  On the other hand in case of a small firm you learn to work from the grass root level and understand various functions. You grow and develop with the firm.  Also in smaller firms there are no definite superior subordinate designations and hence everyone gets an opportunity to learn and grow together.

 

(If you are preparing to secure your dream job, you may want to visit – The InsideIIM Career Guide

Also see results of the InsideIIM Recruitment Survey 2012 )

 

5) Since you have experience in the field of corporate finance, what skills according to you are necessary to succeed and perform well in the area of corporate finance?

According to me analytical skills and an aptitude is important.  Corporate finance requires professionals to be disciplined and structured in their thoughts. At the same time, however theoretical it may sound ethics play a very important role. Passion for learning is of utmost importance, if you have the drive to learn something new and have a basic aptitude then it is not difficult to enhance your technical skills.

 

6) How would you describe a normal day in the life of a corporate finance professional?

There is no fixed routine that we follow as corporate finance professionals. Also the practice of submitting daily reports does not exist. We handle different projects and work according to the circumstances. There is a new problem waiting to be solved each day and deadlines are extremely important. We have our daily work priorities and anything related to that which comes our way needs to be done.

 

7) Any piece of advice for the new batch of professionals or any experience you would like to share with them?

My only advice to young professionals would be not to enter any field with an exit option planned in advance. Your selection criteria should not be based on a fool proof exit plan in mind.  What I mean is that at the entry level one must not be very choosy w.r.t a particular profile as pre-formed notions about an industry or role can be detrimental to the work output in a role.

 

As told to Kala Krishnan

 

You may be interested in :

Perspectives – Career perspectives from those who’ve faced the battles and reached the top.

The InsideIIM Career Guide

 

 

Our facebook page : InsideIIM

Follow us on twitter here : @InsideIIM

Profile gravatar of kala

Kala K

Message Author


Message Author

Kala Krishnan recently caught up with Ami Mehta,alumna of JBIMS, Mumbai. She works as Manager – Financial Planning & Analysis – New Categories at Cadbury India Ltd. She was kind enough to talk about  a few aspects around a career in Corporate Finance. She also gives us some perspective around how life in the corporate world is a couple of years after graduation.

 (Read : Corporate Finance – InsideIIM Career Guide)

1) Firstly, do you think theoretical knowledge you attain in a management school has an application in the practical work life or is there still a gap between academia and the industry?

Theory forms a part of our basics. Our basic ideas, concepts and principles are formed on the basis of the theory we learn in a management school. They are very necessary but at the same time the theory cannot be directly applied in practical areas, it always requires some modification and additional knowledge. So, there is a gap between industry and academia but the gap can be easily bridged through various techniques and experiences like training, peer interaction, work environment and work culture.

 

2)Today almost every other person has multiple academic degrees. Is it the need of the day or just a trend?  How do you differentiate yourself in the crowd?

Basically it does help in getting the best paid jobs in the industry in most cases; but the bigger factor remains the opportunity for role changes which get restricted because of a single degree.  For e.g., a single degree like a C.A may restrict your role while adding an MBA will give you a better platform along with a wider perspective to things. Areas like planning, analysis require candidates with a wider perspective and undoubtedly management skills.

However to differentiate yourself in a crowd multiple degrees are not the only thing, softer skills are also given importance. Aspects like how an individual approaches a problem, how he presents himself etc. helps him to stand out amongst the rest.

 

3) As an ambitious woman professional how do you maintain your work life balance?  What suggestions can you give to young budding professionals?

It is not very difficult to maintain the right work life balance when you are clear from the beginning about your priorities. Companies today respect work life balance and help women allowing them flexible working hours. At many places this may depend on your rapport with the superiors but it can be achieved. I have also seen companies which encourage working from home 2 or 3 times a month which is extremely beneficial. The basic principle lies in making yourself clear from day 1 on your  working hours and limitations and at the same time women can adopt means like working from home after a certain time or working while travelling so that you can leave your workplace early, thus various arrangement are possible without compromising on both your priorities.

 

4) Between a multinational and a small firm with greater responsibilities, which would you consider to be a better option for a starter?

It has to be an individual decision based on the benefits offered in a multinational or in a small firm with greater responsibilities. However there is no doubt that a multinational can be the best place to begin. It has all the best processes, best systems, and best compensation and also adds value to your profile.  On the other hand in case of a small firm you learn to work from the grass root level and understand various functions. You grow and develop with the firm.  Also in smaller firms there are no definite superior subordinate designations and hence everyone gets an opportunity to learn and grow together.

 

(If you are preparing to secure your dream job, you may want to visit – The InsideIIM Career Guide

Also see results of the InsideIIM Recruitment Survey 2012 )

 

5) Since you have experience in the field of corporate finance, what skills according to you are necessary to succeed and perform well in the area of corporate finance?

According to me analytical skills and an aptitude is important.  Corporate finance requires professionals to be disciplined and structured in their thoughts. At the same time, however theoretical it may sound ethics play a very important role. Passion for learning is of utmost importance, if you have the drive to learn something new and have a basic aptitude then it is not difficult to enhance your technical skills.

 

6) How would you describe a normal day in the life of a corporate finance professional?

There is no fixed routine that we follow as corporate finance professionals. Also the practice of submitting daily reports does not exist. We handle different projects and work according to the circumstances. There is a new problem waiting to be solved each day and deadlines are extremely important. We have our daily work priorities and anything related to that which comes our way needs to be done.

 

7) Any piece of advice for the new batch of professionals or any experience you would like to share with them?

My only advice to young professionals would be not to enter any field with an exit option planned in advance. Your selection criteria should not be based on a fool proof exit plan in mind.  What I mean is that at the entry level one must not be very choosy w.r.t a particular profile as pre-formed notions about an industry or role can be detrimental to the work output in a role.

 

As told to Kala Krishnan

 

You may be interested in :

Perspectives – Career perspectives from those who’ve faced the battles and reached the top.

The InsideIIM Career Guide

 

 

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Follow us on twitter here : @InsideIIM

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Kala K

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Kala Krishnan recently caught up with Ami Mehta,alumna of JBIMS, Mumbai. She works as Manager – Financial Planning & Analysis – New Categories at Cadbury India Ltd. She was kind enough to talk about  a few aspects around a career in Corporate Finance. She also gives us some perspective around how life in the corporate world is a couple of years after graduation.

 (Read : Corporate Finance – InsideIIM Career Guide)

1) Firstly, do you think theoretical knowledge you attain in a management school has an application in the practical work life or is there still a gap between academia and the industry?

Theory forms a part of our basics. Our basic ideas, concepts and principles are formed on the basis of the theory we learn in a management school. They are very necessary but at the same time the theory cannot be directly applied in practical areas, it always requires some modification and additional knowledge. So, there is a gap between industry and academia but the gap can be easily bridged through various techniques and experiences like training, peer interaction, work environment and work culture.

 

2)Today almost every other person has multiple academic degrees. Is it the need of the day or just a trend?  How do you differentiate yourself in the crowd?

Basically it does help in getting the best paid jobs in the industry in most cases; but the bigger factor remains the opportunity for role changes which get restricted because of a single degree.  For e.g., a single degree like a C.A may restrict your role while adding an MBA will give you a better platform along with a wider perspective to things. Areas like planning, analysis require candidates with a wider perspective and undoubtedly management skills.

However to differentiate yourself in a crowd multiple degrees are not the only thing, softer skills are also given importance. Aspects like how an individual approaches a problem, how he presents himself etc. helps him to stand out amongst the rest.

 

3) As an ambitious woman professional how do you maintain your work life balance?  What suggestions can you give to young budding professionals?

It is not very difficult to maintain the right work life balance when you are clear from the beginning about your priorities. Companies today respect work life balance and help women allowing them flexible working hours. At many places this may depend on your rapport with the superiors but it can be achieved. I have also seen companies which encourage working from home 2 or 3 times a month which is extremely beneficial. The basic principle lies in making yourself clear from day 1 on your  working hours and limitations and at the same time women can adopt means like working from home after a certain time or working while travelling so that you can leave your workplace early, thus various arrangement are possible without compromising on both your priorities.

 

4) Between a multinational and a small firm with greater responsibilities, which would you consider to be a better option for a starter?

It has to be an individual decision based on the benefits offered in a multinational or in a small firm with greater responsibilities. However there is no doubt that a multinational can be the best place to begin. It has all the best processes, best systems, and best compensation and also adds value to your profile.  On the other hand in case of a small firm you learn to work from the grass root level and understand various functions. You grow and develop with the firm.  Also in smaller firms there are no definite superior subordinate designations and hence everyone gets an opportunity to learn and grow together.

 

(If you are preparing to secure your dream job, you may want to visit – The InsideIIM Career Guide

Also see results of the InsideIIM Recruitment Survey 2012 )

 

5) Since you have experience in the field of corporate finance, what skills according to you are necessary to succeed and perform well in the area of corporate finance?

According to me analytical skills and an aptitude is important.  Corporate finance requires professionals to be disciplined and structured in their thoughts. At the same time, however theoretical it may sound ethics play a very important role. Passion for learning is of utmost importance, if you have the drive to learn something new and have a basic aptitude then it is not difficult to enhance your technical skills.

 

6) How would you describe a normal day in the life of a corporate finance professional?

There is no fixed routine that we follow as corporate finance professionals. Also the practice of submitting daily reports does not exist. We handle different projects and work according to the circumstances. There is a new problem waiting to be solved each day and deadlines are extremely important. We have our daily work priorities and anything related to that which comes our way needs to be done.

 

7) Any piece of advice for the new batch of professionals or any experience you would like to share with them?

My only advice to young professionals would be not to enter any field with an exit option planned in advance. Your selection criteria should not be based on a fool proof exit plan in mind.  What I mean is that at the entry level one must not be very choosy w.r.t a particular profile as pre-formed notions about an industry or role can be detrimental to the work output in a role.

 

As told to Kala Krishnan

 

You may be interested in :

Perspectives – Career perspectives from those who’ve faced the battles and reached the top.

The InsideIIM Career Guide

 

 

Our facebook page : InsideIIM

Follow us on twitter here : @InsideIIM

Profile gravatar of kala

Kala K

Message Author


Message Author

Kala Krishnan recently caught up with Ami Mehta,alumna of JBIMS, Mumbai. She works as Manager – Financial Planning & Analysis – New Categories at Cadbury India Ltd. She was kind enough to talk about  a few aspects around a career in Corporate Finance. She also gives us some perspective around how life in the corporate world is a couple of years after graduation.

 (Read : Corporate Finance – InsideIIM Career Guide)

1) Firstly, do you think theoretical knowledge you attain in a management school has an application in the practical work life or is there still a gap between academia and the industry?

Theory forms a part of our basics. Our basic ideas, concepts and principles are formed on the basis of the theory we learn in a management school. They are very necessary but at the same time the theory cannot be directly applied in practical areas, it always requires some modification and additional knowledge. So, there is a gap between industry and academia but the gap can be easily bridged through various techniques and experiences like training, peer interaction, work environment and work culture.

 

2)Today almost every other person has multiple academic degrees. Is it the need of the day or just a trend?  How do you differentiate yourself in the crowd?

Basically it does help in getting the best paid jobs in the industry in most cases; but the bigger factor remains the opportunity for role changes which get restricted because of a single degree.  For e.g., a single degree like a C.A may restrict your role while adding an MBA will give you a better platform along with a wider perspective to things. Areas like planning, analysis require candidates with a wider perspective and undoubtedly management skills.

However to differentiate yourself in a crowd multiple degrees are not the only thing, softer skills are also given importance. Aspects like how an individual approaches a problem, how he presents himself etc. helps him to stand out amongst the rest.

 

3) As an ambitious woman professional how do you maintain your work life balance?  What suggestions can you give to young budding professionals?

It is not very difficult to maintain the right work life balance when you are clear from the beginning about your priorities. Companies today respect work life balance and help women allowing them flexible working hours. At many places this may depend on your rapport with the superiors but it can be achieved. I have also seen companies which encourage working from home 2 or 3 times a month which is extremely beneficial. The basic principle lies in making yourself clear from day 1 on your  working hours and limitations and at the same time women can adopt means like working from home after a certain time or working while travelling so that you can leave your workplace early, thus various arrangement are possible without compromising on both your priorities.

 

4) Between a multinational and a small firm with greater responsibilities, which would you consider to be a better option for a starter?

It has to be an individual decision based on the benefits offered in a multinational or in a small firm with greater responsibilities. However there is no doubt that a multinational can be the best place to begin. It has all the best processes, best systems, and best compensation and also adds value to your profile.  On the other hand in case of a small firm you learn to work from the grass root level and understand various functions. You grow and develop with the firm.  Also in smaller firms there are no definite superior subordinate designations and hence everyone gets an opportunity to learn and grow together.

 

(If you are preparing to secure your dream job, you may want to visit – The InsideIIM Career Guide

Also see results of the InsideIIM Recruitment Survey 2012 )

 

5) Since you have experience in the field of corporate finance, what skills according to you are necessary to succeed and perform well in the area of corporate finance?

According to me analytical skills and an aptitude is important.  Corporate finance requires professionals to be disciplined and structured in their thoughts. At the same time, however theoretical it may sound ethics play a very important role. Passion for learning is of utmost importance, if you have the drive to learn something new and have a basic aptitude then it is not difficult to enhance your technical skills.

 

6) How would you describe a normal day in the life of a corporate finance professional?

There is no fixed routine that we follow as corporate finance professionals. Also the practice of submitting daily reports does not exist. We handle different projects and work according to the circumstances. There is a new problem waiting to be solved each day and deadlines are extremely important. We have our daily work priorities and anything related to that which comes our way needs to be done.

 

7) Any piece of advice for the new batch of professionals or any experience you would like to share with them?

My only advice to young professionals would be not to enter any field with an exit option planned in advance. Your selection criteria should not be based on a fool proof exit plan in mind.  What I mean is that at the entry level one must not be very choosy w.r.t a particular profile as pre-formed notions about an industry or role can be detrimental to the work output in a role.

 

As told to Kala Krishnan

 

You may be interested in :

Perspectives – Career perspectives from those who’ve faced the battles and reached the top.

The InsideIIM Career Guide

 

 

Our facebook page : InsideIIM

Follow us on twitter here : @InsideIIM

Profile gravatar of kala

Kala K

Message Author


Message Author

Kala Krishnan recently caught up with Ami Mehta,alumna of JBIMS, Mumbai. She works as Manager – Financial Planning & Analysis – New Categories at Cadbury India Ltd. She was kind enough to talk about  a few aspects around a career in Corporate Finance. She also gives us some perspective around how life in the corporate world is a couple of years after graduation.

 (Read : Corporate Finance – InsideIIM Career Guide)

1) Firstly, do you think theoretical knowledge you attain in a management school has an application in the practical work life or is there still a gap between academia and the industry?

Theory forms a part of our basics. Our basic ideas, concepts and principles are formed on the basis of the theory we learn in a management school. They are very necessary but at the same time the theory cannot be directly applied in practical areas, it always requires some modification and additional knowledge. So, there is a gap between industry and academia but the gap can be easily bridged through various techniques and experiences like training, peer interaction, work environment and work culture.

 

2)Today almost every other person has multiple academic degrees. Is it the need of the day or just a trend?  How do you differentiate yourself in the crowd?

Basically it does help in getting the best paid jobs in the industry in most cases; but the bigger factor remains the opportunity for role changes which get restricted because of a single degree.  For e.g., a single degree like a C.A may restrict your role while adding an MBA will give you a better platform along with a wider perspective to things. Areas like planning, analysis require candidates with a wider perspective and undoubtedly management skills.

However to differentiate yourself in a crowd multiple degrees are not the only thing, softer skills are also given importance. Aspects like how an individual approaches a problem, how he presents himself etc. helps him to stand out amongst the rest.

 

3) As an ambitious woman professional how do you maintain your work life balance?  What suggestions can you give to young budding professionals?

It is not very difficult to maintain the right work life balance when you are clear from the beginning about your priorities. Companies today respect work life balance and help women allowing them flexible working hours. At many places this may depend on your rapport with the superiors but it can be achieved. I have also seen companies which encourage working from home 2 or 3 times a month which is extremely beneficial. The basic principle lies in making yourself clear from day 1 on your  working hours and limitations and at the same time women can adopt means like working from home after a certain time or working while travelling so that you can leave your workplace early, thus various arrangement are possible without compromising on both your priorities.

 

4) Between a multinational and a small firm with greater responsibilities, which would you consider to be a better option for a starter?

It has to be an individual decision based on the benefits offered in a multinational or in a small firm with greater responsibilities. However there is no doubt that a multinational can be the best place to begin. It has all the best processes, best systems, and best compensation and also adds value to your profile.  On the other hand in case of a small firm you learn to work from the grass root level and understand various functions. You grow and develop with the firm.  Also in smaller firms there are no definite superior subordinate designations and hence everyone gets an opportunity to learn and grow together.

 

(If you are preparing to secure your dream job, you may want to visit – The InsideIIM Career Guide

Also see results of the InsideIIM Recruitment Survey 2012 )

 

5) Since you have experience in the field of corporate finance, what skills according to you are necessary to succeed and perform well in the area of corporate finance?

According to me analytical skills and an aptitude is important.  Corporate finance requires professionals to be disciplined and structured in their thoughts. At the same time, however theoretical it may sound ethics play a very important role. Passion for learning is of utmost importance, if you have the drive to learn something new and have a basic aptitude then it is not difficult to enhance your technical skills.

 

6) How would you describe a normal day in the life of a corporate finance professional?

There is no fixed routine that we follow as corporate finance professionals. Also the practice of submitting daily reports does not exist. We handle different projects and work according to the circumstances. There is a new problem waiting to be solved each day and deadlines are extremely important. We have our daily work priorities and anything related to that which comes our way needs to be done.

 

7) Any piece of advice for the new batch of professionals or any experience you would like to share with them?

My only advice to young professionals would be not to enter any field with an exit option planned in advance. Your selection criteria should not be based on a fool proof exit plan in mind.  What I mean is that at the entry level one must not be very choosy w.r.t a particular profile as pre-formed notions about an industry or role can be detrimental to the work output in a role.

 

As told to Kala Krishnan

 

You may be interested in :

Perspectives – Career perspectives from those who’ve faced the battles and reached the top.

The InsideIIM Career Guide

 

 

Our facebook page : InsideIIM

Follow us on twitter here : @InsideIIM

Profile gravatar of kala

Kala K

Message Author