It is no secret that the finance industry has historically been dominated by men and that’s still the case today, but gender dynamics appear to be gradually shifting, albeit slowly.
More women are studying for careers in finance through management and commerce courses, according to the Financy Women’s Index. But the Workplace Gender Equality Agency’s data shows that number of women working in finance has remained relatively stable over the past few years.
Women are also under-represented in leadership positions with many obstacles in the way of securing those top positions.
So why are more women choosing to study for a finance? What’s the future look like to younger women? Is it about the money and the potential to earn more? Or is there more to it?
The places you could go
If you are working in the financial services industry, you are working in international markets. This means a job in finance gives you the opportunity to work from anywhere in the world.
While there is a thriving financial industry in Australia, there are opportunities in a plethora of different cities overseas as well.
For those who get itchy feet or thrive from a change of environment, the finance industry gives you the chance to make your dreams of adventure a reality.
Working in different countries and experiencing different cultures does not only help to enhance your understanding of the markets and your industry, but it also allows you to develop important interpersonal and management skills.
It also means that you gain experience working with different teams, seniors and clients which will be reflected in the way your approach new challenges.
You can challenge yourself
A career in finance can be demanding but it also an industry where you are likely to feel constantly stimulated and pushed to fulfil your potential.
Many countries are still recovering from the Global Financial Crisis of 2008 and new economic challenges present themselves every day, and this means that every day can be different.
In such a dynamic industry, you are required to be constantly innovative, creative and adaptable in your approach to your work.
As well as this, there is the chance to work in a range of different positions, each with their own specific challenges whether it be in mergers and acquisitions, bonds or wealth management.
You can help grow the economy
Christine Lagarde of the IMF famously asked the said if the Lehman Brothers had been the Lehman Sisters‘ then the financial crisis may have played out a little differently.
In fact, some research suggests that, as women are more likely to avoid excessive risk, had more women been working in top positions in the finance industry, we may not be in the financial situation we currently find ourselves in.
While there is no way of knowing what might have happened had things been different, one aspect of a career in finance is that as a woman in the industry you could have a profound impact, a far bigger impact than you might realise.
Women excel when it comes to strategic thinking, risk management and multi-tasking and it is these skills that the financial world needs. With more women working in finance, the global economy could grow and grow.
You see the impact of your work
The finance industry is rewarding because it a profession where you can see the impact of your work in real-time.
Whether your advising clients, developing strategies or assessing the markets, you can often see the impact of your decisions straight away and feel as though you’re making a meaningful and tangible difference.
This is an important aspect of any profession because a lot of our job satisfaction comes from the sense that by doing our jobs we are making a change in the world, ideally a change for the better.
Solving global problems
As we move into the future, the field of sustainable finance is becoming increasingly important.
We face real global environmental challenges that must be tackled and the finance world must be part of the solution to making the world a better place for future generations.
Being involved in this industry gives you the chance to build a more sustainable future while still ensuring business and capital continue to advance.