How to raise your profile

How a younger generation of treasurers can gain experience and increase their standing

Younger treasury professionals often wonder how best to raise their profile and gain relevant experience, the kind of experience that will help their organisation achieve its goals as well as advancing their own professional development.

Volunteer

The most obvious approach is pretty straightforward: volunteer. Young people, says treasury consultant and past ACT president Fiona Crisp, have a readymade advantage in that they are very good at putting their hands up, something they will have to do in order to secure those types of opportunities.

“I would say to young treasury professionals that, if there’s an opening for you to get involved in a project – whether that’s implementing a TMS, or evaluating FX within one of your firm’s subsidiaries – then just stick your hand up and say, ‘Yes – I want to do that’, because it will lead you into something different, and provide you with fresh exposure.”

Hunt down new challenges

Volunteering to take part in a project signals your readiness to take on extra responsibilities and widen your skill set. It shows that you’re willing to embrace new styles of working as well as new challenges. Of course, to be able to volunteer for a project, you need to hone your internal networking skills to ensure you’re aware of any initiatives that might be in the pipeline.

“It’s unlikely that a senior figure will simply send an email and say, ‘We think this project is something you would be interested in.’ Young treasury professionals need to keep their ears to the ground and find out what sort of developments are happening internally that they may be able to get involved in,” says Crisp.

Seek out assistance

If you’re not sure how to go about doing that, you could consult the ACT mentoring scheme and see if they can find someone who may be able to provide relevant advice. One of the advantages of this is that you don’t have to make a long-term arrangement – you could have a mentor for only a couple of months to help you make the sort of impression that would enable you to get staffed on a project.

Look outside your organisation

Another way to stretch out into new areas is to volunteer to help the ACT itself, Crisp points out. “So, if a query comes up from the ACT, and a figure there says, ‘We’re looking for someone to come aboard this forum related to “X” burning issue of the day,’ then, yes – again, put your hand up, and acquire that new string to your bow.

“Of course, training and CPD are absolutely essential for any youngster to progress. But projects will give young treasury professionals scope to measurably demonstrate that they can produce deliverables. Instead of just doing the day job, they can show that they’re doing something outside it, and putting in that little extra that goes beyond what is expected of them,” Crisp says.

For further details on the ACT mentoring scheme, click here.

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