Helen Watson describes her untypical journey into finance. After attending multiple schools and then being advised to go to secretarial college, Helen finds a job in finance in Gibraltar before moving and being hired by Morgan Stanley in London.
From there, starting as a sales assistant, she overcomes initial resistance to win a place on the Morgan Stanley graduate training programme and becomes a broker. She describes the “terrifying” experience of beginning to call clients, and her subsequent route to become the first female Managing Director in their Private Wealth Division in Europe. Her journey then takes her to Rothschild & Co’s Wealth Management business, where she rises to become CEO, a Partner and member of their Group Executive Committee.
She talks about the consistent problem of wealthy families losing their wealth within two generations, the underlying causes, and suggestions to overcome this including; candour, communication, clearer planning, good partners and a dose of discipline in staying the course!
She discusses the Rothschild & Co investment approach, the importance of preserving real purchasing power, setting the right benchmarks and expectations, as well as managing difficult market episodes.
Finally, Helen offers some invaluable insights for women in the work place, advice for progressing, encouraging cognitive diversity in the hiring process and why portfolio and wealth management are well suited for women. Finally, she discusses the relevant topic of the cost/benefit of attending university and why it may be becoming a less inevitable path than has traditionally been thought.
To celebrate our upcoming episode with Tilly Franklin, CIO of the Cambridge University Endowment Fund, we are re-releasing some past interviews with other inspiring women in finance.
In this episode, Simon enjoyed an enlightening discussion with Helen Watson, CEO of Rothschild & Co., Wealth Management (UK), who describes her untypical journey into finance.
Are you a young woman looking to break into the investment industry? Discover free resources, news, events and support at www.gainuk.org. To learn more about the charity, listen to our new episode with Tilly Franklin, who co-founded the organisation (alongside running the endowment fund of one of the world's most renowned universities!). The full interview is out tomorrow, so stay tuned!