Company of the Week: Nordea – Future Finance Professional programme

When I was chosen to the Future Finance Professional (FFP) programme I did not quite know what
to expect. I only knew the team I was going to join, and even though I had read some posts about
the programme of 2016 on the FFP-page on Facebook and here on Markets’ career blog, my
knowledge about Nordea Markets still wasn’t on point. So I was quite nervous on May 2nd, at my
first working day.

Luckily, quite early on it became clear that no one expected us FFPs to know ‘everything’, but we
were encouraged to learn more and to develop our expertise. For this reason, the FFP programme
is not only for digging into the tasks of our own desks, but also for gaining a wide insight into the
Markets operations and Markets as a part of Nordea – and little by little growing literally towards
becoming a Finance Professional.

Summer Academy expands the point of view

My 23 FFP colleagues and I are working in various teams specialising in our diverse tasks varying
from sales to analyses and controlling. As to the way of looking, the financial markets is quite
different in front office and middle office, and so the Summer Academy is a great opportunity to
get a view of Markets as a whole.

We attended lectures, where Markets’ specialists shared their knowledge on the area they’re
specialised in. We heard inspirational speeches, interesting stories and funny banking-related
memories from experts that are very passionate about what they do. We also participated in
activities such as playful competition dealing with interest rates and discussed about the sessions’
topic.

The career stories were a really fascinating part: To about the very different backgrounds the
specialists have and which paths they have gone through to be in their current positions. Quite
many started as Markets’ trainees; this got us to consider and see the opportunities that Markets
could provide for our future as well. These afternoon sessions also made the specialist more
approachable. After having exchanged a word or two at the Summer Academies it became much
easier to go and talk to them afterwards. Contacts and networking are vital in a working place this
large, since no one can be an expert in everything.

Summer projects with real business cases

In addition to our Summer Academy sessions, we FFPs got involved with summer projects. We
were formed in to groups of 4-5 persons from different desks and given various project
topics, created based on true demands and related to Markets operations and functions.
We got to work with real-life business relevant cases with actual data and material. Even though
the hours were long at times, I found the project working interesting. We got acquainted with things
we probably otherwise would not have familiarised with, and expanded our outlook for the
financial Markets further. The projects helped us to understand Nordea as a whole with Markets
being ‘only’ a part of the bank.

The presentation experience in front of an enthusiastic audience was definitely also one of the
major benefits of the programme. And the collaboration with the other FFP colleagues have also been one of the best parts of the whole trainee period. Working together for our shared goal, was really fun and educational.

Challenging but the most rewarding time ever

Even though this summer has been really challenging and required a new mind-set towards the
work, still, it has been the most rewarding time ever. The responsibility one gets truly drives you to
achieve the goals and to perform at your best. I feel like I’ve been able to adapt the things I gained
in the university to my work, and have also learned even more while achieving a
deeper understanding of how the financial markets actually work.
At times I felt like I was a little first grader learning constantly new things and enjoying succeeding
to the fullest – and what could be more rewarding?

 

/Reeta Juvonen