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"Please help, my junior fixed income sales job is very dull"

I am looking for some advice. I graduated two years ago from a top British university and I work in fixed income platform sales for a US investment bank. The job is not what I had expected.

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It's incredibly dry and monotonous, and I'm not actually learning anything. My main function seems to be helping senior staff with onboarding new clients. I'm left on my own with no direction, and it seems to be a bit like data entry. It's supposed to be a client-facing role, but really I'm just working in operations. I thought I'd be learning some technical skills, but I'm fearful that if I stay here for too long, I'll find it hard to move.

I want to raise these points with my managers, but I'm not sure how to go about it. If I air my grievances, I think they may just get upset.

Does anyone have advice? I've looked at other jobs, but I haven't developed skills for moving into the areas I'd like to work in, like private credit or private equity. What can I do? I feel very trapped. 

Sophie Arno is a pseudonym

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AUTHORSophia Arno Insider Comment
  • Ch
    Christine H
    23 April 2024

    It is a very rare person (a unicorn perhaps?) who has not felt that their first job is a) not what they thought it would be; b) boring; c) is not using his/her skills.


    My suggestion is to go your boss and say you really enjoy working with the team and want to continue learning, but feel you are not being sufficiently challenged and that you want to make more of a contribution. You then ask if there are additional responsibilities you can take on. This doesn't sound like someone who is airing grievances, does it?


    Make it positive and not about what is making you unhappy but expressing a desire to have more of an impact on the team.

  • Pr
    Pragmatic
    17 April 2024

    You are in sales and you appear to have bought the sales pitch. Get yourself a mentor, set reasonable targets under their explicit guidance. They will provide context, realism and guide you towards a pathway if they are any good. Then make a decision after some reasonable time has passed to achieve some of those targets.


    All careers are caveat emptor, a hard lesson, but one we all have to learn and at least it has only taken you two years. Sales is one of the few jobs where if you can carve a niche and find your voice and use it that is currently safer from AI than most other jobs. Please think on that before the baby goes with the bathwater.

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