Tamsin was recently recognised and nominated for a place on the highly acclaimed CS ‘Accelerated Leadership Programme’. She is also an active ‘Women Connect’ committee member, focused on inspiring and connecting women across the firm through creating gender positive initiatives and events, and has recently been appointed as the ‘Diversity Delegate’ for the Global Credit Products business within Credit Suisse, reporting on gender specific issues and advancements.
She has been shortlisted for the Future Leader Award.
Can you tell us about your career path so far?
I actually had no intention of going into finance initially – I studied Law at Warwick University with the aim to eventually practice law as a career, but very quickly had a change of heart! I took several Business and Economics optional modules as part of my degree and then decided to pursue a career in finance. To gain experience post graduating in 2012, I applied for several internships in different areas to help figure out where I wanted to specialise (including a Private Equity role in Singapore, which was a lot of fun!) and soon realised I was drawn to the atmosphere and fast-moving pace of the trading floor. I first started a role in Credit Sales at Mitsubishi Trust and then moved to Credit Suisse as part of the UK Real Money sales team. I was hired at Associate level, then promoted in my first year to Vice President and this year was promoted early to Director, covering some of the largest Tier 1 clients for the desk. I’m also involved in the strategic decision making behind the business being part of the Investment Grade Operating Committee, meeting weekly with senior management to brainstorm ideas on how to keep the CS Credit franchise ahead of the competition.
Sales and trading have been male dominated parts of the industry, have you experienced this and do you think things are changing?
There is no doubt that sales and trading has historically been a very male-dominated part of the industry. I do, however, believe things are changing industry-wide through the introduction of hiring schemes aimed at women (for example, the Credit Suisse ‘Inspire’ programme & ‘Real Returns’ scheme) and through understanding how to appeal to women whilst hiring at intern and graduate levels. Credit Suisse is at the forefront of this cultural change, my desk is actually majority female.
Working from home has worked efficiently during the pandemic and hopefully this flexibility will continue once we are back to a normalised working environment. I believe more flexible working options for those in Sales and Trading will help attract more women into this part of the industry.
What has been the most rewarding part of your professional life to date?
The most rewarding part of my job is undoubtedly my involvement in the development and hiring of young professionals. In 2020, Credit Suisse moved its summer internship to a virtual format due to Covid. I arranged a full virtual curriculum comprised of lessons, assessments and Q&A sessions for the interns rotating on the credit desk and mentored them through the process, allowing them to get the most they possibly could from a very tough situation. The Credit desk ended up making two job offers as a result. CS have some amazing schemes aimed at introducing young people to the industry. Aside from the graduate summer internship, I’m involved in the CS ‘Steps to Success’ internship programme, which offers university scholarship funding for students from underprivileged backgrounds, helping to support students on the scheme through Q&As & industry discussions. I also volunteer for the ‘Modern Muse’ charity, which is set up to attract young women into finance. My involvement in both of these initiatives has been hugely rewarding.
You took part in the Credit Suisse ‘ALP’ what did you gain from this experience?
I was selected to participate in the Credit Suisse ‘Accelerated Leadership Program’ last year and found it to be exceptionally useful. The program has been designed to provide high potential employees with enhanced leadership capabilities via targeted development activities such as building networks across the bank and exposure to senior management. In particular I really valued the sessions on leadership communication skills and how to improve personal impact through utilising these. It was invaluable to build relationship with senior management across different parts of CS and, I have no doubt that building my profile in this way helped me achieve my promotion this year. I was also first introduced to my mentor at an ALP networking event, so I gained a lot overall from the experience!
What have you been doing during lockdown to keep busy?
I have been kept busy planning my wedding during lockdown (and then re-planning the wedding when the first one was cancelled…..!!) we are hoping to finally go ahead at some point later this year…fingers crossed!