He is 27; at the first look he cuts an unassuming figure, more like a fresher out of the college. Scratch the surface and the fathoms of achievements and the experience flow out, Justin Nam, assistant vice president - equity trading & relationships, First Global Financial Services Limited, speaks with Jobsmart on his career path.
Education and early days
Studies sciences in high school, when I was finishing up I started looking at finances - making an impact in day-to-day life.
I studied in Campion College and got a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Western Ontario, Canada where he majored in Economics. Going abroad gave me a different perspective of things, from adapting to the weather to fending for oneself.
The starting block
I had the opportunity to go to an excellent institute, got exposed to the North American market. Since I was born in Canada, I had the option to work there but I decided to return home and make a positive impact. I wanted to give back to the country.
It was my policy to work in a dynamic company; I joined DB & G in 2002 as a financial analyst. I was very eager to make an impact, so I maintained and adhered to high standards and produced high quality research work.
Growing and moving ahead
In 2003, I won the analyst of the year award, instituted by Jamaica Stock Exchange in 2003. In the company, I had a chance to look at the other aspects - I was in equity trade, where the job profile was to trade stock, manage portfolios and advice on investments.
In 2004 I was transferred to Trinidad and Tobago where I stayed till 2006 , this experience expanded my knowledge and I also gained exposure to the Bond market.
The present assignment
I joined Grace Kennedy as Assistant Vice President - Equity Trading & Relationships, on May 1, 2007. The primary responsibilities include growing the Company's stock brokerage business and maintaining FGFS' dominance as one of the leading stockbrokers in Jamaica.
GK promotes young managers, which is the reason I joined. I think that age should not be a restricting factor, infact it is an advantage, it is important in this profession to be alert and nimble and if you are young you are more flexible. You should also have the ability to liaise with different departments.
What have you learnt along the way?
One important thing I learnt was that work goes on come what may, even when there was heavy snow and temperatures fell below freezing point, there was no stopping.
What drives you?
I believe that you should always embrace change and accept responsibility, do not focus on what the pay packet is. I had to uproot and relocate, I left behind whatever I had, which was not a deterrent. I am happy that I made good relationships.
I want to do the best and am not averse in doing any task at hand, even if it is to answer a phone or clearing off a cup of coffee from the table.
I do whatever comes my way; I believe that nothing can be achieved by shortcuts. One has to develop a good reputation and be honest with people. Things do not happen overnight, you have to make sacrifices in the short term to look at long term goals.
My parents and my sisters have constantly supported and guided me. My parents have always been pragmatic; I remember that they wished me 'good management' instead of 'good luck', which meant that I had to manage and the best out of the situation. My father always taught me to work hard.
Key to success
Attitude is the key, one should be goal oriented and think positively. I think one should have a solution to a problem rather than showing a problem. I believe that one should work on a long-term framework and enjoy what one is doing.
Plans for the future
I have plans in the pipeline and am very excited about being here. I want to motivate change and keep moving ahead and aiming high. I want to venture into more competitive sectors and build pool of resources that can liaise with overseas brokers and are exposed to first world standards.
Career in the financial sector
The financial sector is very dynamic and has a high growth potential in the coming years - people with Finance and Economics can look at this sector to make a career. There will be a demand for research analysts and with the Caribbean markets merging in the future there will be a need develop new and innovative products
Last updated: June 05, 2007
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