I have a lot of friends who work in finance and (as a fellow finance major), and I’m always fascinated by their jobs (though I rarely understand everything they tell me – college was 15 years ago, for me) For that reason, I was particularly excited about today’s reader feature. I met Liz at a reader meet-up this Fall and we immediately bonded over beauty products (she’s a fellow Dr. Bader devotee and gushed to me about how it had changed her skin). Our jobs couldn’t be more different so I loved learning more about her typical day (it sounds intense!!!). Thanks for sharing, Liz!
Name: Elizabeth Scanlon
City: New York, NY
Job Title + Company: Vice President in Cross Asset Sales at an investment bank.
Educational Background: Business Administration Major/Finance Concentration from the University of Richmond (Richmond, Virginia)
Tell us a little bit about you and what you do.
I work in Cross Asset Sales at an investment bank, structuring solutions for various wealth management clients.
I work with clients to create structured product solutions that express their market views and are suitable for their investment objectives. A big part of my job is providing market commentary and product ideas that are timely to the changing macro-economic environment and resonate with their investment views. Every day, I am in constant communication with my clients to fulfill their specific requests and also to better understand their needs. In doing this, I am able to anticipate how I can add value and be helpful to them in achieving their goals, whether it is through research, providing product ideas or general market insights.
Apart from my day job, I am also a part of our Women’s Network and am deeply involved in our recruiting and development efforts, for my alma mater and for the general firm. In the Women’s Network, I lead up a sub-group that focuses on development for young women at the firm, and take part in the events and activities our workstream and the larger organization puts together. Not only have I been able to expand my network this way and meet a ton of wonderful, driven young women, but I also have been able to have my voice heard and thoughts put into action.
How did you get started? Briefly walk us through from college to now?
After taking economics courses in high school and growing up with a father and brother who worked in Finance and Accounting, I knew I was passionate about business and the financial markets going into college. After finishing my liberal arts requirements (7 am poetry class anyone?), I started taking accounting and economics to work on my business major. I quickly learned that balance sheets and cash flow statements were not for me and decided to focus more on economics and finance.
My older brother, who was working at a hedge fund at the time was also a great source of inspiration and driver behind my decision. I have looked up to him my whole life, and always thought of myself as his twin (despite the 7 year age difference). He quizzed me constantly on the markets, calling me morning, noon and night, to make sure I was serious and equal to the task. While this was annoying at times to a little sister, my passion for finance and desire to work in Sales and Trading never faltered. This ultimately led me to a summer internship my junior year at the investment bank I work at now.
During my summer internship, I rotated across different sales and trading teams in the bank, learning about their various roles and responsibilities and trying to figure out where my personality and skill set fit in best. It was a whirlwind and I was a sponge soaking up information at every desk visit and networking event. I was fortunate enough to receive an offer back at the end of the summer and joined full time following graduation and have been working on the same team ever since.
Best part of your job?
The people, and that every day is different. I work on an incredible team, and every person has been instrumental in teaching me something new and how to improve and be the best version of myself at work and in life. Also, in a fast paced and sometimes stressful environment, I am fortunate to be surrounded by supportive, driven people who make me laugh on the hardest days.
While I love a good routine, when it comes to work I love that every day is different when it comes to the clients I’m talking with and the news and information that is shaping the markets. While Fed meetings are scheduled, you never know what breaking story or development can shake up what was going to be an otherwise calm day.
There is never enough time in the day and I can never seem to cross everything off my to-do list! I always wish I had more time to get things done. I always want to excel at work, but a part of that is having a work-life balance and self care so I can bring the best version of myself to work every day. And that means on some days, I have to accept that I am going home with an unfinished to-do list.
A Day in Her Life: Elizabeth Scanlon.
When do you get up?
6:30-6:45am if I’m not attempting to work out, otherwise its around 6am.
Tell us about your morning routine.
Cliff notes: Shower, skincare, blow dry and minimal makeup.
After a flare up in my hormonal acne last year, I revamped my skincare routine and am pretty serious about it. I rotate between two cleansers, Sunday Riley Ceramic Slip Cleanser and La Roche-Posay Effaclar Gel Facial Wash for Oily Skin.
My skin is combination/oily, and it generally depends on how my skin feels that morning for the cleanser I choose. Honestly, you can’t go wrong either way. I rotate my regime post face wash every other day.
My first routine is to start with a Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Universal Daily Peel followed by Augustinus Bader Cream. On the days without Dr. Dennis Gross, I will use Drunk Elephant C-Firma Vitamin C serum, followed by Skinceuticals Hydrating B5 gel and then use my Dr. Bader cream.
I switch my routine up because my face can’t handle the peel pads every day, and I have seen both routines make a noticeable difference in my complexion and the acne scars on my face. I definitely have Grace to thank for my obsession with Dr. Bader. That man is literally changing my face, and therefore, my life. (Some people might say I’m dramatic… I disagree!) In terms of makeup, I throw on Lune + Aster CC cream, mascara and blush, and that wraps up my makeup. The CC cream smells like heaven and is so fresh and leaves my skin looking dewy, but not oily.
I recently chopped off my hair and I won’t lie, I love the new style, but I love the extra time it saves more.
I rarely blow dry my hair now, and opt for an air dry after using Living Proof in-shower styler or throwing in some Velcro rollers and doing a quick 30 second blow dry with them, and letting it dry while I go about my routine. In between primping, I make a to-go cup of coffee, pack my workout clothes for later if I haven’t worked out that morning, and get a run down of the morning’s news from my boyfriend. After this, it is either a 20 minute walk or quick subway ride to work where I listen to a podcast (Bad on Paper!) and relax before the day begins.
Walk us through your full day and what that looks like.
7:45am: Arrive to work and immediately play catch up on emails that came in overnight and read the news. My morning round up of news is WSJ, Bloomberg, Morning Brew, Skimm and the Daily Pnut. Whatever I don’t get through by 8:20am, I read sporadically through the day as I have pockets of time.
8:30am/8:45am: The flurry of activity usually begins and from there it tends to be consistent stream of client activity via phone, email and instant message throughout the day till the market close at 4pm.
11:45am-12:30pm: I usually scoot out for lunch, going for salad from By Chloe or Sweetgreen. Every day, we rotate coffee/tea runs for the team to break up the afternoon around 2pm and give us a little extra boost to get through the last stretch of the day.
4pm: Answer any non-urgent emails that came in during the day that I have not had time to address and work on longer term projects and initiatives. I will also review and update my running to do list at the end of the day, to strategize on prioritization and next steps for unfinished tasks so I can continue making progress.
6/6:30pm: The day wraps up, at which point I’ll either go to spin or barre class or head home, sometimes coordinating with my boyfriend and sharing the walk or subway ride back together.
What’s your bedtime routine like?
I love an early bedtime and wind down routine.
Usually around 8:30 pm, I’ll do my night time skin care routine. Similar to the morning routine, I alternate between creams every other night, Dr. Bader’s Rich Cream and Sunday Riley’s CEO Cream. They are both so rich and creamy, but never leave my skin feeling greasy or like an oil slick.
Quick & Random
Favorite social media channel?
Instagram – follow me @elscanlon.
What are your favorite blogs and Instagram follows?
Barefoot Blonde (@amberfillerup), Show Me Your Mumu (and the founders @cammymumu and @colognemumu), Sarah Flint (@SarahFlint_nyc), Gal Meets Glam (@JuliaHengel), Jameela Jamil (@JameelaJamilOfficial and @i_weigh), Candice Accola and Kayla Ewell (@CandiceKayla), Cleo Wade (@cleowade)
Bad on Paper, duh! But also: LadyGang, Directionally Challenged, Second Life, Armchair Expert and any good true crime podcast.
Favorite Show to Binge?
Real Housewives (Beverly Hills and New New York), Grey’s Anatomy, Seven Days Out, Sex and the City (Sorry – no highbrow content here!)
Best Career Advice You’ve Received?
This is tough and I definitely can’t pick just one. The first advice I’d share is “Don’t Ask, Don’t Get.” I actually thought this one was a little silly/corny when I first heard it because I thought if you work hard and are a good person, success will find you. While it may, success will find you a lot faster (and easier) if you speak up for what you want and take control of your career and destiny.
Even if you are the hardest worker, no one will to hand you opportunities, and you need to know how to advocate for yourself and what you want and deserve. Not only will this get you existing opportunities, but it can lead to the creation of new opportunities that may not have even existed before. You may not always get what you ask for, but you’ll know you did all you could to be successful and that will hopefully leave you with a sense of fulfillment and ease.
The next best piece of advice is that not everyone is going to like you, and that is OK.
I generally enjoy being around people (like 80% of the time), and am surrounded by people all day, and care a lot about the feelings of those around me. That being said, it is important to always be professional and respectful and to be yourself, but sometimes you are not going to jive with another person and they are not going to like you and that is ok.
I used to want everyone to like me (and hey, who doesn’t!), but at the end of the day, it is a job and what’s important is you create and produce high quality and consistent work, not make a best friend. On the flip side, you will meet a ton of great people along your career and some of those people may become your close friends, and support system, and that is awesome.
One final rant: my default used to be saying I’m sorry for everything, and now that I’m hyper aware as I try to self correct my own behavior, I have noticed this occurrence more with other female than male colleagues. Apologizing for things that don’t even merit an apology, like “Sorry I didn’t format that PowerPoint the way you *just* told me you wanted”, when I actually had no idea. Stop apologizing, and reframe the discussion! Instead, you can say something to the effect of, “I see why that format would make more sense for this presentation and will keep that in mind for next time, thanks for this feedback.” It leads to a more productive and thoughtful conversation.
Where do you get your inspiration?
My best friends, family and boyfriend. My best friends are the strongest, most kick ass group of women I know. Every day they inspire me to find new ways to excel in my own job and further cultivate my career, self development and network. These women are my biggest cheerleaders and the greatest support system I could ever ask for, building me up after every failure and misstep and celebrating every achievement as if it’s their own. My family has also always been a huge part of my life, both my immediate and extended family. I am a part of a big Irish Catholic family (our smallest celebrations are minimum 20 people), and nothing brings me greater joy and fills up my tank like time with my family. Every minute with them is full of laughter, chaos and love (and delicious food!).
And then I have to give a special shout out to my boyfriend, who is a constant source of support and knowledge (and love!). He is the only person I know who consumes more news than me and has an insatiable curiosity for information that I am envious of. I think he is singlehandedly keeping the newspaper and magazine industry in business with his thirst for knowledge. It motivates me to be more informed and to always stay curious and keep asking questions.
Your all time, desert island favorite beauty product.
Dr. Bader the cream – for me, the change in my face is worth the price!