The Association of Women in Finance hosted another sold out event on February 12, 2015 at the Borden Ladner Gervais offices, situated by the Vancouver waterfront. Our guest speakers for the evening were Kathy Butler, Managing Director and Head, Wholesale Banking - British Columbia, CIBC and Maili Wong, Portfolio Manager, Vice President, Investment Advisor at The Wong Group - CIBC Wood Gundy. Our guests were treated to appies, drinks, and an evening of networking and conversation moderated by Melanie Bradley, Partner, Borden Ladner Gervais.
Our guest speakers opened up to the audience on their experiences as women working in capital markets. They shared their views on what they perceive to be their strengths as women working in a male dominated industry, their personal and academic backgrounds that led them to their position today, and their thoughts on mentorship. The conversation also included how they earned the respect of their mostly male colleagues, how they dealt with interpersonal conflicts, and balancing the see-saw of work and life after they became mothers.
Kathy spoke about how she was introduced to the capital markets during her MBA program. Working closely with clients, she feels that her interpersonal skills, diligence, and reliability allows her to earn and keep the trust of her clients in her sales oriented role. Learning from her mentors, she has developed a leadership style that is “passively assertive”, enabling her to get what she wants while remaining true to herself. Kathy prioritizes her family with scheduled bath-times, ensuring they spend time outdoors, and by working unconventional hours.
Maili earned a spot in the portfolio management program at UBC and gained a highly coveted internship at Merrill Lynch early in her career. Upon graduation she started at Merrill Lynch in New York City as a derivatives trader. She learned to become more assertive, to “ask for it”, and to literally shout to defend herself during her time on the trading floor. Now working primarily with private clients managing personal wealth, she finds that her thoughtful solutions, personalized approach, and interpersonal skills help her work with individuals. Her mentors, formal or informal, have encouraged her to achieve more than she thought possible. Maili also touched on how she had to learn to set boundaries, manage expectations, and learn when to say “no” as a mother of two young children.
Thank you for the continuous support from our attendees, our sponsor, BLG, and our guest speakers for another successful event.