For Recruiters
The wife of an MD in a European bank says young women should not be discouraged from trading careers.

"I met my husband on the trading floor. Banter did not deter me"

I know the banking industry very well. My husband of nearly two decades is the managing director and head of a business at a European investment bank. He is a very good man and I met him when I was working in banking too.

It was the early 2000s and I was working in the back office environment of an investment bank in London. I was a young woman surrounded by salespeople and traders and most of them were men. I was 23 years old, I'd just left university after five years of studying.

Initially, the environment surprised me a bit. There were a lot of jokes around sex and I found it a bit shocking; I grew up in the French countryside and I was young and naive. But I never felt threatened by them. Although the men could be crude, I never felt that their crudeness was linked to the fact that I was a woman. Speaking honestly, I chose to accept it and from time to time I would joke with them too. I never took it personally and I never felt threatened.

I am sharing my experience because I think that men on trading floors have a bad reputation, and that trading floors are not seen as places for women to work, but this is not my experience. Likewise, I never saw the man who became my husband joking about sex or talking crudely; if anything, I did it more than him. He is a very serious guy.

I know a lot of women who have built very good careers in banking, and I don't think the stereotypes should put them off. Yes, there are more men than women in trading but this is simply because traders often come from a mathematics or physics background and there are fewer women studying these subjects at university and graduate school. I don't blame the banks for not hiring women - there aren't enough qualified women to do those jobs. 

Now that my children are older, I want to go back into a banking job and I am exploring my options. This is an excellent and rewarding industry to work in and women should not be discouraged. There are still a lot of men in sales and trading, but the banter is less than before. My husband says traders today are much more careful in what they say: they understand that they can be misinterpreted by women who don't accept the banter. 

Isabelle Magnier is a pseudonym. This is a guest comment and not the opinion of eFinancialCareers. 

Photo by Dorina Stati from Pexels

Have a confidential story, tip, or comment you’d like to share? Contact: sbutcher@efinancialcareers.com in the first instance. Whatsapp/Signal/Telegram also available (Telegram: @SarahButcher)

Bear with us if you leave a comment at the bottom of this article: all our comments are moderated by human beings. Sometimes these humans might be asleep, or away from their desks, so it may take a while for your comment to appear. Eventually it will – unless it’s offensive or libelous (in which case it won’t.)

 

author-card-avatar
AUTHORIsabelle Magnier Insider Comment
Cancel

Apply for jobs

Find thousands of jobs in financial services and technology by signing up to eFinancialCareers today.

Boost your career

Find thousands of job opportunities by signing up to eFinancialCareers today.
Latest Jobs
Selby Jennings
Data Scientist
Selby Jennings
Mont-Royal, Canada
Caisse de Dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ)
Analyste, Produits au comptant
Caisse de Dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ)
Montreal, Canada
Selby Jennings
Lead Linux Engineer
Selby Jennings
Toronto, Canada
Receptionist & Office Administrator (18 month contract)
Sprucegrove Investment Management
Toronto, Canada
Caisse de Dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ)
Coordonnateur(trice), Communications internes
Caisse de Dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ)
Montreal, Canada